Building your own home presents a great opportunity to build in a sustainable way.
There are so many sustainability considerations which are relevant for building your own home.
We have listed a few key considerations below to help get you thinking:
Site Selection and Design:
- Choose a site that minimizes environmental impact as much as possible.
- Design your home to take advantage of solar heating, natural ventilation, and daylight where possible.
- Insulate walls, roof, and floors to reduce heat loss.
- Consider opting for a compact and efficient building shape to minimize surface area and therefore reduce energy consumption.
- Incorporate energy-efficient appliances and lighting, such as LED bulbs.
Renewable Energy Integration:
- Consider installing solar panels to generate electricity or solar water heating systems for your hot water needs.
- Explore options for other renewable sources like wind or heat pumps if suitable for your location.
- Choose sustainable materials and consider locally-sourced options.
- Prioritize materials with recycled content and avoid toxic substances. For example, when using wood, you should look to use wood which has been certified as sustainably sourced by the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC)1.
- Consider installing water-efficient fixtures and fittings such as low-flow toilets and faucets.
- Consider rainwater harvesting systems to collect and store rainwater for non-potable uses.
- Plan for efficient waste separation and recycling within the home.
- Consider integrating composting systems for organic waste.
Monitoring and Control Systems:
- Install smart systems that control lighting, heating, and cooling based on occupancy and time of day.
Certifications and Standards:
- Aim to meet the requirements laid out by sustainable building certifications like Building Research Establishment Environmental Assessment Method (BREEAM).2
- Regularly maintain systems to ensure they operate efficiently.
Find a Trade Professional
Use our partner directories from CIAT, FMB, RIBA, or RTPI to find an chartered architectural technologist, builder, architect or planning consultant to help with your project or development.
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