We are certainly living through some extraordinary times. Thanks to the COVID-19 pandemic, most of us have been forced to make significant changes to our daily lives. Rather than thinking about the restrictions, we should all be consciously deciding to make the most out of the whole situation.
It usually takes most homeowners at least six months or more from deciding to renovate until they actually begin. Use this free time to distract yourself from being quarantined by either planning major green projects you can’t do yourself or tackling any that you can.
Not only can you take advantage of hardware stores being open for business, but there are some that offer home delivery, and there’s plenty of expert advice available for free online for any topics you aren’t sure about. Below are our top 7 eco-friendly improvement suggestions at home.
People should be finding time during this quarantine period outdoors, so a backyard with freshly cut grass and a garden with a variety of beautiful plants can be a real blessing. Having access to a well-maintained garden where you can relax will always be better than trying to survive with a jungle just outside your back door.
Adding some landscaping features such as flowers, plants, and other greenery surrounding the border of a well-manicured lawn can really transform the overall appearance of your home. Consider adding plants like chrysanthemums, lavender, marigolds, and mint because not only do they look beautiful, but they also serve a second role as natural pest repellents.
Update Your Bathrooms
Giving your bathroom an update is a great way to refresh your house. The best part is that if you start working on it now, the sooner you’ll be finished and enjoying the benefits. While many people often put off renovating their bathrooms in favour of completing other rooms, getting the job done right will provide much more than just the aesthetics.
While water is essential for bathroom hygiene, toilets in many homes waste a lot of water unnecessarily. A good place to start saving water would be by replacing all water fixtures in your bathroom showerheads and faucets with low-flow alternatives.
But homes that still have toilets with traditional flush systems waste the most. By installing a dual flush toilet, not only will you save water by using the half flush option, but they also use an upgraded system that still uses less water with a full flush.
Update Your Appliances
Replace any essential household appliances like fridges, stoves, and washing machines that use too much electricity by upgrading to energy-efficient whitegoods with higher energy rating and improved power consumption. Not only is this eco-friendly, but your utility bills will also be reduced which means eventually you will make the money outlaid back over time.
When shopping for eco-friendly appliances, there are several factors to look for apart from just their energy-efficiency rating. You should also take into consideration things like the manufacturer’s carbon footprint, average water usage, and if it can be recycled in the future. Size is also important because the overall energy consumption of larger appliances can be much higher than a smaller unit, despite having a higher energy star rating.
Improve Your Kitchen
Many homeowners choose to start with the kitchen when renovating before other rooms. That’s because as command-central for most households, kitchens also consume more power than any other room. Not only will identification and installation of energy-efficient solutions be good for the environment, but it’ll also help save a noticeable amount when electricity bills are due.
Many younger generations are looking for functionality throughout their living space as well as being eco-friendly, so kitchens need to be practical, efficient, and come with some smart solutions The right eco-friendly kitchen upgrade will add value to your property and you will be able to pass on the costs when you sell.
For the highest possible energy efficiency, your home needs to use the least amount of energy whenever you are cooling or heating the inside. Protect your home from the elements by installing high-quality insulation inside the roof, behind the walls, and even underneath the floor. This will ensure that your house will stay cooler during summertime and warmer whenever the temperature begins to drop.
Clean out Junk
Our endless desire for over-consumption is a big contributor to the global climate crisis, so you should go through your storage areas and clean out any old toys or other unnecessary junk in the most sustainable ways possible. With our oceans increasingly polluted with plastic and our landfills overflowing, conducting cleanouts and decluttering responsibly is imperative.
Start the clean-out process by putting things in three separate piles. One pile for charity donation or to give to friends; the next is for creative repurposing and upcycling, the last one is for all recyclable materials like paper, plastic, or metal.
Self-isolation during COVID-19 will likely see many people spending a lot more time indoors, so it’s important for your general well-being and mental health to bring a little bit of the outdoors inside. Indoor plants have long been one of Australia’s most popular interior trends, transforming the home by bringing joy to each room.
Healthy plants have a soothing nature that feels full of life and are always best for indoors. In other words, a classic normal Monstera that is well looked after is much better than a rare and amazing variegated Monstera that’s almost dead.
For the highest chance of success keeping it alive, your best bet would be asking the experts at an independent nursery or a boutique plant store which indoor plants would be most suitable both for your home and your lifestyle.
Every single one of us is adjusting to change somehow. We’re all in this together, yet alone. Working from home. Social distancing. Not visiting family and friends. Barely leaving the house. To say that the pandemic surrounding Coronavirus has changed our lives would surely be the understatement of our lifetime.
It’s important to remind yourself that this too shall pass. But while these adjustments to daily life are only temporary, making eco-friendly improvements and green upgrades around your home would be the opposite. And not only will you be doing the right thing by the planet, but you’ll also be doing the right thing for you, your surroundings, and your wallet.