Everyone is becoming more and more aware of their impact on the environment. With only one world, we have to do everything we can to protect it for future generations.
It’s important that we try to minimise our environmental impact, and this is particularly important when building houses. There is nothing better than building your very own home; brand new and exactly what you want, it can be a dream for many to have this opportunity. However, when building your own home, you should be aware of the impact you’re making on the environment and try to find ways to minimise your impact.
To help, we’ve created our list of top things to consider when building your own home, to help reduce your environmental impact.
Don’t build from scratch
When you buy a piece of land that already has a house built on it, it can be tempting to rip down the whole thing and start from scratch. But this can have a negative environmental impact. In order to try and be as sustainable as possible, you want to reduce the demand for these materials. Therefore, trying to use the existing structure where possible will reduce your need for new materials, reducing the demand and making your more environmentally friendly.
Choose building materials with a low environmental impact
When choosing what to use to build your home, make sure to consider materials with as low environmental impact as possible. Do some research into different material types and suppliers, to make sure you’re making the best choices possible. You’ll want to choose a sustainable building material, and this can be defined as one that does not negatively impact on non-renewable resources, the natural environment or human health. Whilst it is likely to be impossible to find a material that doesn’t have some kind of negative impact, you can still find one with the lowest impact.
Make sure to look at all stages of the materials life style. This includes the upstream stage, where materials are extracted and manufactured, the in-use/operational stage, and finally the downstream stage, when materials are disposed of or reused.
Look to use recycled materials
When looking for sustainable materials to use, also consider materials that have already been recycled. This will help to reduce the demand for new products, and increase the demand for recycled ones. For example, you could look to utilise recycled concrete on a garden path or walkway or for retaining walls. Using a material like this helps to minimise waste and increases environmental sustainability.