Feeling the urge to go green? Here are 8 simple ways to green your home provided by CNNMoney.com:
1. All about the eaves.
A roof should overhang walls by at least one foot. This will keep the sun off windows and exteriors, which will help the house stay cool in the summer. This will also protect siding from bad weather, which may allow you to go twice as long between repaintings or re-sidings.
2. Reuse and remodel.
A house that you fix up will probably be much greener than anything you may build in its place. You will consume a lot of energy and materials putting up a new structure. By tearing a home down, all the stuff that went into building the old house will go to waste.
3. Size does matter.
The average American home occupies about 2,500 square feet compared to 1,700 in 1977. But try to fight the urge to go big and high. A smaller, well-proportioned house is easier to heat and to cool. Keep these tips in mind: A kitchen should match how you really cook. Unless you are cooking up 7-course meals every night, a kitchen that is about 20 feet long, will be most convenient; Bedrooms are for beds and are designed around the spot you sleep, not around a sitting area you will most likely not use as much; and More rooms can be better than one giant space.
4. Renewable energy.
Even though you may not be putting a wind turbine in your backyard anytime soon, in many areas it is possible to sign up with an electricity provider that gets its juice from renewable sources, often including wind.
5. Get a zone defense.
Thermostats are now as smart as your iPod. You can program them to respond to your use patters, which will cut your energy bills by nearly 10% (according to date from Energy Star).
Upgrading the insulation in your home can cut your heating bills by as much as 20%.
7. Ventilate and circulate.
The key to keeping cool in the summer without cranking the air condition is to force warm air out of your house as quickly as possible. Vents in the attic space, combined with insulation in the ceiling below, keep the cool air downstairs from being warmed by the pocket of hot air above.
8. Be wise about windows.
By putting windows in the right place you can benefit from the most old-fashioned kind of solar power. Homes in the northern part of the country with most of its windows facing the south will collect more light, and therefore more heat in the winter.