Eco-homes: Your home of the future
Is sustainability a factor you take into consideration when you make purchases? From food to clothing, there are companies across the world who have made it their mission to behave in a socially conscious manner, and to make their business activities more sustainable. What about when it comes to building houses though? Sure, there are ways to reduce your carbon footprint, like with solar panels or alternative energies, but what will eco-homes of the future look like? And would you want to live in one? Here are some of the features the eco-homes of the future are likely to have.
Solar panels, or Photovoltaic systems
Solar panels on the roofs of houses are now an increasingly common sight, so in the eco-homes of the future they should be a given. Having usable solar power instead of relying on fossil fuels will not only improve carbon emissions, reduce greenhouse gases and improve air quality, but it will be cheaper too – so you could be saving hundreds of pounds on your energy bills each year.
Cavity wall insulation isn’t a new idea, but in the eco-homes of the future the materials used will be a more natural, and sustainable alternative to the foam used today. Already we’re seeing homes with wall insulation using straw, recycled newspaper and sheep’s wool.
Rainwater harvesting and filtration
Using the natural resources available, such as sunlight and rainwater means having to rely less on other means of fulfilling your need for safe, drinkable water. The eco-homes of the future will have further developed the rainwater harvesting and filtration systems that are commonly used today so that you have ample water available for bathing, drinking, doing dishes and even running the washing machine.
Efficiency furnace and heating
When you need to boost the heat available from your solar panels, using energy efficient sources like wood burning stoves are the best solution for any eco-home. In recent months we’ve also seen homes installing heat pumps, which are an excellent solution for off-grid homes, although be warmed they do require a hefty up-front investment.
Triple glazing windows
Where you have windows in your eco-home, you’ll want to make them large so that you can let in as much natural daylight as possible to heat your home using sunlight, but you’ll also want to minimise draughts and heat loss through your windows, which is why triple glazing windows are likely to be the norm for homes of the future.
Green roof and green walls
When building eco-homes, the aim is make the house fit naturally within the landscape, which is why materials found in close proximity to the house site are often the best choice. For helping your home blend into the natural landscape further, you might want to consider having a ‘green roof’ which is covered by living plants and vegetation – the benefits of this include reducing the amount of rainfall runoff and adding some heat insulation to your roof.