The Basics of Creating an Eco-Home

Creating an eco-home can be complex or simple. It depends on the type of home you have, its age, and your willingness to make some changes. Solar panels and improved water management are among the basics, extending into areas such as smart technology. Making some of these changes is easier when starting a project from scratch. But there is no reason you can begin making your home more eco-friendly in some minor ways as a family.

Self-Sufficient Herbs and Vegetables

Becoming self-sufficient is a dream for many people. Growing your own vegetables and herbs will make a huge difference to your health, happiness, and wallet. Of course, the weather isn’t always favorable, but a sustainable polycarbonate greenhouse offers a safe and practical way to cultivate what you need all year round. This means less trips to the store and less reliance on imported goods. As a result, your bills and your carbon footprint will both come way down.

Creating an Eco-Home with Solar Panels

One of the first things people think about when we talk about eco-homes is solar panels. The solar panel has become almost the official symbol of environmentalism and sustainability. And this is for good reason. Solar panels are no longer unaffordable, and the technology has improved a lot. Modern solar panels can produce between 250 and 400 kw/h. That’s almost enough to become completely reliant on solar panels under the right conditions and energy use.

Sustainable Insulation Materials

Insulation is a key part of energy efficiency and can make a huge difference to your heating bills and energy use. Attic and wall insulation are among the most common, and these need to be replaced around once every 20 years. Modern insulation is also much more sustainable than the older types. Additionally, it also works efficiently. It is an investment, but the savings you will make compared to poor or no insulation far offsets the cost of having good insulation installed.

Low-Consumption Everyday Appliances

Almost all of us use certain appliances on a daily basis. The fridge, washing machine, and TV are among the most common. And the energy these use can be pretty substantial, especially if they are older. When an appliance needs replacing, you can begin the process of installing energy-efficient models. These can save you a lot of money down the line as they use much power. New models of common appliances also come with “eco modes” for saving even more.

Recycling and Reusing Where You Can

Recycling is one of those habits that is hard to begin but becomes much easier and has huge positive advantages once you get into it. There are tons of websites that can provide detailed information on recycling, but to begin, here are some handy suggestions that aren’t too hard:

  • Use only old bags for shopping and never purchase new ones to reduce plastics.
  • Come up with meal plans that use similar ingredients to cut food waste.
  • Pass clothing along to household members or donate them in good condition.
  • Use food scraps for composting if you have a garden, herb, or vegetable patch.
  • Take electronics and batteries for safe and secure disposal at your local depot.
  • Repurpose glass and plastic containers for other uses around the home.
  • Get crafty and upcycle household items or create unique works of art.
  • Separate garbage waste and recyclable materials for collection or disposal.

Getting into the habit of reusing shopping bags helps reduce the amount of plastic needed to produce more. Given that food is one of the most wasted products, we can do more to prevent this, and meals with similar ingredients ensure nothing goes to waste and be used for compost.

Install Gray Water Systems

If you have a garden for growing herbs and vegetables, then you will need a lot of water to keep them alive and well. But we all use water anyway, most of which is wasted. Gray water systems catch water from sinks and other non-contaminated sources. It is then possible to reuse this water after it has been filtered and cleaned. Some systems allow you to reuse gray water for showering. But it is mostly reused in the garden to save on using fresh water that costs more.

Make the Home Airtight

Insulation is one of the top ways to make your home more efficient when it comes to heat. But it isn’t the only solution and is not 100% effective. An eco-home should also consider airtightness. An airtightness massively improves the thermal efficiency of the structure. It works by minimizing gaps in the building. Gaps allow cold air to seep in and warm air to escape. Air gaps are a top cause of heating problems in almost all standard homes, even some of the new ones.

Use Light when Creating an Eco-Home

Starting a project from scratch, it is likely you will design a home around letting more light in. Light makes any home brighter and more inviting. But there is also a practical side to letting in more sunlight. It is still sunny, even in winter. And on the right days, sunlight can be a big help in maintaining a steady temperature of around 70°F without having to switch on the heat. There are also other benefits of sunlight, such as reducing anxiety and promoting an improved mood. 

Embrace Smart Technology

Smart technology isn’t essential for an eco-home, but it can be a massive help. Smart thermostats can help maintain a steady temperature and control when heat comes on and goes off. Even something as simple as voice control can ensure all lights are turned off to save energy. Smart technology isn’t that expensive these days either and is affordable for pretty much everyone. Additionally, most devices will work with your personal smartphone.


Self-sufficiency when it comes to food is a priority when creating an eco-home. This will save carbon emissions and a lot of money. It also helps to begin with a solid recycling routine to reduce waste. And affordable smart tech will help save on the costs of energy and heating.

Posted in Homeowners, Sustainability on Jan 19, 2024