When planning on building a new house, consider taking steps to make it as green and energy-and water-efficient as possible.
- Talk to your local municipal office as well as your contractor about measures to make your home energy-efficient and choosing green building materials and design. Ask about the different types of walls, pipe systems, wiring, insulation, heating and cooling systems, windows, lighting and interior materials that will help in energy efficiency. It might cost a little more but it will pay off in energy savings and conservation.
- If you are building a new home or are replacing your windows, consider installing windows with double-glazing and spectrally selective coatings that reduce heat gain and help maintain the house’s temperature. Select windows with air leakage ratings of 0.3 cubic feet per minute or less.
- Don’t have large windows all around the house - they will let in a lot of heat.
- If you are considering having a central air conditioning system, make sure you have a separate operation switch in each room.
- Get appliances (such as refrigerators, washing machines, dishwasher’s etc.) that are efficient or have the best energy rating.
- Invest in good-quality exhaust fans.
- Make sure taps and shower heads are fitted with flow reducers or invest in taps or shower-heads that have restricted flow.
- When planning out your garden, make sure it is landscaped keeping in mind, water and energy consumption.