Interior Design & Flooring

Green interior design trends

Wed, 10/17/2012 - 15:02

Americans are increasingly turning their focus toward investing in green technology. The advancement of energy-efficient technology has allowed the average homeowner to install affordable modern solutions to reduce a house’s carbon footprint, while not forgoing style.
According to the National Home Builders Association (NAHB), the green building market has increased from 2 percent of properties meeting energy-efficient standards in 2005 to 17 percent of homes in 2011. Real estate researcher Zillow claims that the American Institute of Architects has reported similar market predictions.
An energy efficient technology that may assist a homeowner is radiant heating. By supplying heat directly through the floor, a radiant heating system can deliver warmth through the surface via infrared radiation. According to the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), radiant heating is more energy efficient than traditional forced-air heating because it removes duct losses. In addition to requiring less electricity to run, the technology allows a homeowner to remove the bulky and unflattering presence of radiators from an interior’s decor.
Every appliance within a home uses energy, which is why selecting a product that is efficient can reduce a property’s carbon footprint. For example, the average American family washes approximately 300 loads of laundry a year. By installing an ENERGYSTAR approved washer, a homeowner can reduce energy use by 20 percent and use 35 percent less water, according to the DOE. A full-sized ENERGYSTAR certified washer uses about 15 gallons of water per load - down from the 23 gallons required by standard machines.
However, this is not the only energy-efficient appliance that can be installed in a home. A water-saving toilet can save the average family of four 14,000 to 25,000 gallons of water per year.