Interior Design & Flooring

Find a balance with cost-effective remodeling projects

Tue, 10/29/2013 - 16:24

Homeowners decide to renovate for a wide range of reasons. Some people want to remodel their home to improve its style and look, while others want to increase the value of the property and some wish to increase energy efficiency. 
By purchasing sustainable materials that will increase the look and energy-efficiency of a property, a homeowner can accomplish all three of these tasks if smart investments are made. 
The News Leader reported that sustainable construction projects may include materials like recycled glass or bamboo floors, but there is much more to it than that. 
"The main thing is, there's kind of two trains of thought for sustainable materials in your home. Some people do it because it's the right thing to do. They want to reduce their carbon footprint… and there's also the energy-efficiency side of things," Korina Branson-Jones, who with husband David Jones owns GreenStick Energy Efficient Construction, told the news source.
There are other options available to a homeowner who wants to go green with a renovation. 
"I might not be a popular person for saying this, but bamboo, it is a great choice when you strictly look at the environmental impact that it's a fast-growing product, but we don't grow bamboo in the United States for flooring," she told the news source.
The material may be green, but the process and carbon footprint associated with shipping it to the U.S. is not. Instead, she recommends selecting materials that are both green in the process of harvesting and in shipping and transportation if possible. For her home in Missouri, Limestone was an eco-friendly material because it has an all-around low carbon footprint. 
"There's locally quarried limestone just north of Springfield … you're making a local purchase and you're saving that cost in the transport. You can actually get a higher-quality product because you're not paying for it to be shipped across the country or around the world," she told the news source.
Homeowners who are looking for an investment remodeling project that will increase the energy efficient of a property may want to consider the value of a radiant floor heating system. This eco-friendly utility improves the comfort a homeowner and his or her guests without burning a lot of fuel, whether it is natural gas or oil. Heat loss is reduced because the system applies warmth to a room with the power of conduction. Instead of pushing heat through a traditional system that uses radiators, vents or baseboard units, the warmth is applied directly with thermal power. This improves the quality of the warmth and the consistency - allowing a homeowner to reduce the temperature the thermostat is set to without ever feeling the difference.
By investing in the right combination of materials and technologies, a homeowner can easily increase the value of his or her house, improve energy efficiency and the look and comfort felt within a space.