Friday, 27 September 2013

Top 5 Lighting Tips for Your Living Room

With the winter months fast approaching and the chilly evenings getting longer, the lighting we incorporate into our living room interior becomes all the more important for creating ambiance and warmth.

The lighting you choose for your room can have a massive effect on the feel of the space. And when the rain, wind and snow force you to spend more and more of your nights tucked up in front of the telly with your loved ones, it’s essential that you get the lighting just right.

That’s why we’ve created this all important guide to choosing your living room lighting this winter; helping you make the choice that’s practical, stylish and effective.

Warmth

As the temperature plummets, it comes as no surprise that most of us want to inject warmth and comfort into our room. The easiest way of achieving this is with effective lighting.

It goes without saying that that you should opt for yellow lighting, as opposed to harsher and colder white light. You should also look for lamps which incorporate warm colours in their shades, like this beige faux silk shade. For added warmth, choose a brass or wooden design for the bass.



(Madrid Table Lamp, in Antique Brass, £49.50, available from Mail Order Lighting.)

Luxury

As a rule, I never actually use the room’s ceiling lights, with the exception of kitchens and bathrooms. However, if for whatever reason you need to use the ceiling light in your living room, you can detract from the somewhat harsh effect this has by choosing a design that incorporates jewels or crystals, for a look that’s opulent, charming and welcoming.

Take a look at the range of Dar lighting at Mail Order Lighting, for some great examples which incorporates these design features.

Modernity

A living room’s lighting isn’t restricted to your lamps and ceiling fixtures. Sometimes, when the weather turns particularly nasty, there is nothing better than the warm glow of a gorgeously inviting fire.

These days, you don’t even have to have a fireplace to enjoy the iconic notion of sitting by the fireside. Options like this SmegFlueless Gas Fire, available to buy online from John Lewis, make it possible for anyone to bring the warming glow and subtle lighting of a fire into their home.

Tradition

Nothing says cosy like traditional interior design features. While you may not want to completely transform you room into a testament to classic design, it is possible to enhance a room’s element of tradition with the addition of lighting.

Something like the classic Tiffany lamp adds style and sophistication to a space and incorporates gorgeous warm colours, perfect for battling the winter blues.



                                 (Raindrop Table Lamp, with Tiffany Glass, £63.36, at Mail Order Lighting.)

Function

I’ve never been able to see the beauty in reading or desk lamps. Even iconic designs, such as the traditional brass base with green glass shade, while undoubtedly a classic, should be confined to the study; and modern designs with their hinges and maneuverability… well they’re just plain ugly.

However, if you spend the majority of the winter months lost in a selection of your favourite beach reads, dreaming of white sands and blue skies, then you’ll struggle to read by firelight alone. That’s why I’m a big fan of small reading lights like this one from Water stones, which can be attached to your book as and when you need it. What’s more, you can enjoy reading your favourite book in clear lighting and bask in the subtle and calming lighting of the fire. Sounds like total heaven if you ask me!


Jack Collier is an interior designer and decorator, with a passion for creating unique and beautiful room designs, writing on behalf of Mail Order Lighting

Wednesday, 25 September 2013

Luxurious Makeover for Your Bathroom

The bathroom has grown to be one of the best-loved rooms in many households. For many of us our bathroom is a place where we can unwind, allowing ourselves to take some time out from our busy lives, sit back, and relax.




Relaxation can be achieved in a variety of forms and where better to start than in your bathroom. We all need a bit of luxury in our lives so we’ve found some products that could be used as part of your own luxurious bathroom makeover.

Wet rooms


Wet rooms have become an increasing popular feature in many bathrooms. Not only do wet rooms look fantastic, giving a sleek contemporary feel, but also they are also highly practical. Wet rooms are extremely easy to clean and they are accessible for children and those with mobility problems.

A wet room can be installed in almost any home and is an ideal solution for many small or unusually shaped bathrooms. Wet rooms are a desired feature to any bathroom and can even add value to your home.

Hot tubs



Hot tubs used to be a product that you could only dream of having, now they have become readily available, even though they are still a luxury product they are now a lot more affordable to buy and run.

Hot tubs are a perfect way to de-stress and relax after a long day at work. There is no better way to spend your evening than in the tub with a box of chocolates or even a glass of wine. Let your troubles melt away as you sit back and revive your body and mind. You can read more about the benefits of Hot Tubs on iconic hot tubs blog.

Heated towel rails


As the winter months are drawing nearer we are all thinking about ways that we plan to keep warm. A heated towel rail can be an asset to any bathroom and with a large array of designs and shapes to choose from it could be just what you need over these cold winter months.

You may think that heated towel is a bit extravagant for the everyday bathroom but you would be surprised at its benefits. Heated towel rails can keep your bathroom at a reasonable temperature, helping you to save money on increasing energy bills.

Waterproof Televisions


Many people have dreamed about relaxing in the tub whilst watching their favourite TV shows and now it’s possible. There are now an exclusive range of waterproof televisions that come in a wide variety of colours and styles to suit you.

These amazing digital LCD televisions were created and tested specifically for use in wet areas, so there is no need to worry about losing picture or sound quality. The glass screens are heated to prevent condensation from forming in high humidity and they even come with a waterproof remote.

Under floor heating


Underfloor heating is a modern and high- spec feature allowing you to enjoy the luxury of warm floors when showering in the mornings and even providing a good selling point when selling your property.

You may not need this in the summer months but during our long cold winters, under floor heating can be a blessing in disguise. Underfloor heating is thought to be a more efficient way of heating a room. The room's walls, doors and windows are well insulated - because of the way the heat is distributed; it also means that you can get rid of your bulky radiators giving your bathroom a nice clean finish.

Author: Izzy Evans from Iconic Hot Tubs, interior design enthusiast and blogger.


Sunday, 22 September 2013

Five Tips for Your Outdoor Home Improvements




Maintaining your home and making improvements are crucial ways to maintain your investment and the enjoyment you get out of your home. Certain improvements can increase the value of your home, save you money on your homeowner's insurance, or qualify you for tax breaks.

Keep Up On Repairs

No one likes major projects, like residing or roofing your home, but it is important to stay on top of these repairs. Keep track of your warranties, and the expected life of important home features such as your roof, as keeping these items in good repair, can save you thousands of dollars down the road.

Look For Tax Rebates

Some outdoor home improvements, such as solar panels, have government incentive programs. Before you start a major project, especially if it is a project that will conserve or produce energy in your home, look for these incentive programs to see if you qualify for any tax rebates.

Consider Cost Versus Added Value

Many outdoor home improvements will add resale value to your home, such as landscaping, or installing a tile roof rather than a shingle roof. Do your research to compare how much the improvement will cost, against how much value it will add to your home. For example, installing a swimming pool will add value to your home, but you will most likely pay more to install it, than you will gain in resale value. The personal enjoyment of owning your own pool may be well worth the money lost, but it is important to understand all the factors before you start construction.

Improve Your Home Security

Getting a home security system does more than just improve your peace of mind. It can also significantly lower your homeowners insurance. Home automation systems can help you control lights, door locks, and alarms automatically through your computer or smart phone to make it look like someone is home at any time. Some services also offer alarms, cameras, glass break sensors, smart thermostats, and motion detectors. These features protect your home when you're away, and convince your insurance company that you are less of a financial risk to them.

Consider How Long You Intend To Stay

Some improvements, such as adding solar panels, can save you money in the long run, but only if you intend to stay in your home for a long period. Many solar panels will pay for themselves in electric bill savings within ten years, but if you plan to move in two, it may not be worth the investment. If you'll be looking for a new home soon, you may want to hold off on installing that deck in the backyard, so you will have the funds to install one in your new home.

Outdoor improvements are a great way to maintain your investment in your home, and get some new enjoyment out of an old space. Just be sure to do your research to get the best value for your time and money.


“Brooke Chaplan is a writer and freelancer living New Mexico. She enjoys blogging about home, family, and fitness articles. Learn more about improving a home through automation at Kansas City home automation. Contact Brooke via Twitter @BrookeChaplan.”

Wednesday, 18 September 2013

Banish the Blues: Bring Warmth to Your Bedroom this Winter

It’s difficult to admit, especially after what turned out to be something of a glorious summer, but the winter is fast approaching. Dark mornings and chillier evenings are signalling the arrival of the colder weather and with it, the temptation to withdraw indoors and while away the winter months sipping tea and piling on the pounds to stave off the icy chills!


With that in mind, it’s important that our little caves are up to the job of harbouring us for a long winter of hibernation. When it’s cold, we all love to hideout in our bedrooms, where we can truly relax in our most comfortable (and often most unattractive) clothing. That’s why I've created these top tips for bringing some much needed warmth to your bedroom this winter.


Accessories


No one is saying that you have to completely redecorate your bedroom in time for winter. On the contrary, you can enhance the warmth and the inviting feel of your room with a few simple additions.

Naturally, the focal point of any bedroom is the bed - so when you’re looking to alter the design or feel of a room, this is the place to start. Adding cushions and a throw is a simple and relatively inexpensive measure that will increase the sense of opulence and comfort in your bedroom, which is just what you’re looking for on those chilly December nights! When I want to add warmth and decadence, nothing serves me better than gold. That’s why I love this range of gold cushions and throws from very.co.uk.


Function


I’m of the firm opinion that televisions should be banished from bedrooms. Your boudoir should be a sanctuary free from harsh noise and mental stimulation, which is why I despair at people who insist on having a flat screen at the bottom of the bed!

That said, I also believe that your bedroom should offer more than a place to rest your head. Armchairs are a great addition to any bedroom, and provide the perfect spot for curling up with a good book and a warm blanket, when the wind and rain are lashing the windows.

This classic leather chair from the range of designer chairs at Cult Furniture, in the iconic Mies van de Rohe style, is perfect for adding style and sophistication to your room, while providing a wonderfully warm place to snuggle up in when you’re in need of some alone time.



(Miesvaan de Rohe Style Vintage Chair, in Brown Leather, £349.00, available at Cult Furniture.)


Lighting


It’s dark for the majority of theharsh British winter, so we’re left with little alternative but to create our own lighting. It goes without saying that when you’re trying to create a warm atmosphere, lighting is a crucial tool. Opt for yellow, as oppose to harsher white light and use table lamps for a warm and cosy atmosphere.


Jack Collier is an interior design enthusiast, with a passion for creating unique and distinctive room designs, writing on behalf of CultFurniture

Tuesday, 17 September 2013

Matching Your Garden Design to Your House Architecture

Gardens are natural embellishments that can make a home so much more charming, relaxing, and homey. There’s no hard and fast rule about the kind of garden that you should maintain to enhance your house. But if you want not just another residence, but a lovely, welcoming home, take time to know which garden style you should have to matching the features of your house.

Is your house design inspired by the Victorian era?


Victorian_house
Image Source: flickr.com


There are several types of 19th century Victorian architecture, but the most popular is the Queen Anne with its “painted lady” look. It’s also made distinctive by its tall and narrow windows, pitched gable roof, and patterned shingles. Columns, turrets, porches, ornate wooden brackets, and decorative woodwork add more character to buildings of this style.

If your home is inspired by this ornate design, your garden has to have a complementary look.

·         The grass must be immaculately trimmed, the hedges well-groomed, and the flower beds neat and free of dried leaves and petals – almost like a painting.

·         Remember that Victorian homes are meant to grab attention and admired. So make your flower beds bold with an assortment of vividly colored flowers.

Or do you have a prairie-style home?


Prairie_house
Image Source: flickr.com


Prairie-style houses are generally identified with their low horizontal silhouettes, having broad, low-pitched roofs and one to two-story structures. Everything about these homes is huge – the overhanging eaves and square porch supports. This design also has an inclination to use natural materials like wood and stones. Windows typically provide the accents with geometric or floral designs.

If your home fits this description, follow the features of the prairie gardens popularized by Dutch designer Piet Oudolf, and your own greenery and outdoor area will be perfect.

·     This style makes use of melodramatic swathes of ornamental grasses together with perennials. Prairie gardens are best for large gardens, but with control and creativity, you can use the same concept in your small space.

·      Alongside the Indian grass, grow wildflowers like false blue indigo, meadow blazing star, butterfly weed, and black-eyed Susan, for instance.


What if you've got a very chic contemporary structure?


Contemporary_home
Image Source: flickr.com


Contemporary house architecture is largely inspired by the temple construction scheme called “zenshuyo,” which is actually characterized by orderliness, simplicity, and lightness, except for its decorative curved roof. This is why a modern home usually takes the minimalist approach of having clean, simple lines and open spaces. It’s stripped of all things unnecessary and focuses on the essentials.

Your challenge in creating a garden for your contemporary living style is making everything appear relaxing and effortless.

·         Remember that everything in your garden must be made to calm the mind and relax the body, creating a spiritual ambiance. You can think about your own outdoor area as your homage to nature.

·         Make sure you have the basic elements found in a Zen garden – rocks, water, sand, and bamboo. Limit your plants to evergreen trees or shrubs. This landscape type often doesn’t require a lot of flowering plants, but if you wish to have them, choose from azaleas, hydrangeas, wisterias, and water-lovers like lotuses and water lilies.


Gardens turn a residential structure into a welcoming home. If you’re planning to create or refurbish yours, look at the architectural features of your house, and take your cue from there. Let the style flow from your front lawn to the backyard.

About the Author - Raquel Merc has mainly contributed about travel and lifestyle. But she’s also started writing a variety of articles on home management and parenting since becoming a mother in 2010. Among her recent works, feature ideas and insights on food and home, including articles for Simply Sheds.

Monday, 9 September 2013

Happy Halloween to You All! Halloween Decor Ideas



Halloween is a fun holiday for adults and children. Home décor suited for occasions is a beautiful idea, there are various themes that one can do for Halloween festival! To get in the mood of the holiday!

I will show you some brilliant ideas that will make your holiday remember able!

·         The Spooky corner:
This is necessary have for a home with children and trick or treat time. Creating a perfect corner for taking good pictures and memories will go a long way.All you need is a bit of time, glue and colored paper!



·         Pumpkin surprise:
 Last year I was lucky to find a lantern (a thrift shop find I will cherish for each holiday to come!), so I will be creating a small corner in the porch for trick or treat! This looks easy to do; will be needing ribbons and of course pumpkins!




Black and orange is a lovely theme, complementing each color tone. In addition, the warmth and festiveness of Halloween is portrayed through such décor. Candles are available in many designs and themes. I love using theme shapes and fragrances, they really add a lot to the overall ambience.


Image Source                       

·         Count Dracula’s feast:
Dinner table, as no holiday is complete without a grand feast, so is the case with Halloween. Theme inspired menus and table décor create an aura of Count Dracula’s dinner table in every house. I like using colored napkins, table runners, matching cutlery and coasters. Accessorizing is necessary to make any theme complete and final. Flowers are weakness, so orange roses it is!



Using a rustic traditional dining table set and adding spider webs, rusty leaves and details will only add more flavors to the table décor. Last fall I got my dining room set from Shop4Furniture and grabbed a few black candles and net and Voila! A haunted themed dinner table, everyone especially loved my lamp lights covered in black net and I used dried flowers, spray painted black to complete the theme.


·         Easy to do décor for Halloween:
Many of the things used can be done within a budget at home, not requiring you to spend an outrageous amount of money for the holiday! My nephew makes amazing ghosts and spider webs using old white flat sheets and twine and yarn. Similar to the images below:






·         Halloween center pieces:
I like doing centerpieces within the Halloween theme so everyone really gets into the festive mood. This year I am thinking of using candles lying around home and pair them twigs and burlap for a haunted theme; it really is a great fabric to work with and has many creative uses!



Hope you guys enjoyed these great easy to do Halloween ideas for décor! I sure enjoyed sharing them. Thanks for having me Chelsea! Wish you guys have a great spooky holiday season!
xo

Eva
Hello dear readers. I am Eva Stephen from Home Décor and am pleased to be here. Chelsea has been kind enough to welcome me to do a special guest post for Halloween, so today I make sure*both*Home Décor readers (interestingly we have the same blog) enjoy decorating for Halloween!

Thursday, 15 August 2013

Summer Time Fun: How to Prepare Your Yard for Warm Weather

Now that the weather has started to warm up, it's time to start thinking about how to prepare your yard for the summer. You may think that you know everything you need to do; however, there are some things you may not be aware of. Learn as much as you can about taking care of your yard. To make it will look beautiful throughout the entire summer.

Garden Greens

Find out what types of plants are not only going to work well with your climate, but also which ones will grow well together. Plants like certain conditions better than others do and when you can put your plants next to others that work well together, you are certain to have a combination of amazing plants. Put some compost in your pile. You can even start on your own compost pile in your backyard, just throw some eggshells or even potato peels down into your soil. This will give your plants the nutrients that they need to thrive. If you are trying to increase the amount of earthworms in your garden, you can use your coffee grounds to attract them. The worms are excellent for your soil.

Tree Time

Now is the best time to prune your trees back. If you can do it before the leaves come on, they will be easier to dispose of. Trimming your larger trees isn't generally something that you want to do on your own. Pay someone to come out and do the job for you to avoid any injury. Find a tree service in Atlanta to come do the hard work for you when you don't have the experience. The result Will be healthy and beautiful trees.

Go Unconventional

Consider getting some chickens to roam your yard, as it is a great way to make sure you never have to buy eggs again. Another benefit of having chickens is that they produce fertilizer to give you an amazing garden. Even using the chickens as a meat source can be something to think about. Find out if your yard and budget can support a coop.



Having a beautiful yard isn't something that has to cost a lot of money. If you are on a budget, you can still use these techniques, so don't be afraid to get out in your yard and spend some time gardening. Before you know it, your yard will look amazing just in time for summer. As you continue to garden, you will start to learn new things to help you in your future gardening endeavors. You will have the opportunity to find out what works and what doesn't. Make this a hobby you find enjoying for your yard, your health and your wallet.

Saturday, 20 July 2013

5 Grill Accessories Every Home Owner Needs This Summer

Rotisserie grills are easy to work, and offer you with a very simple way to make flavorful and delicious meals for your entire yourself, family, or even an entire dinner party. Having the correct accessories for your grill is essential so you can maximize your various cooking options your grill will offer you, and get both convenience and variety. While many people think golden brown, delicious, and juicy rotisserie style turkey or chicken when they break out their grill, when you have the proper accessories, you can nearly cook any types of meat with it.

Source: http://www.flickr.com/photos/okrad/7542996082


1. Thermometer

Having a decent meat thermometer is important to prepare your meals successfully with your grill. This does due to you not know if your chicken, beef, ribs, or turkey, are cooked fully and safe enough to eat unless you find out if the internal temperature is adequate enough. There are several different types of meat thermometers, and although you will not have to buy one that is loaded with all the bells and whistles, it is a good idea to do so. Some types of thermometers provide indicators that tell you if your dinner is cooked fully based on the meat type, and tell the temperature too.

2. Grill basket

Source:http://www.flickr.com/photos/cooking-outdoors/8051298194/

Although wrapping your fish and vegetables in foil on your grill offers heat insulation, it does not always allow for that smoky grill flavor to get inside. Having a grill basket will help since it holds small and delicate food intact and allows for the smoke to permeate inside the basket to provide that delicious BBQ flavor.

3. A good flipping tool

One common BBQ tool used to flip food on a grill is a pair of tongs or a spatula. These are both fairly inexpensive and you can get great deals on them with Home Depot Coupon Codes. You can try both to experiment which is better for different food types. Tongs are ideal for most food; however with either of the two, you will need to take care when flipping delicate food like fish. Another tool for flipping is a fork; however, this does pose the risk of piercing the meat which releases moisture while cooking.

4. Outdoor Fridge

Imagine the convenience of owning an outdoors fridge. You can keep prepared food next to the grill and get to it easily when you are ready to cook. The outdoor refrigerator comes in different sizes and prices. You can also find different accessories to go with it such as the beverage cooler, the drop-in ice chest, beverage cooler, pull-out drawers to easily store utensils and beer tap fridge!

5. Rib-o-lator

A common tool that is highly recommended for BBQ grilling is the rib-o-lator. This accessory easily converts your grill into your own rotisserie and is easy to install. It features a 4-tray design that is not typical of the ordinary rotisserie. It has trays which hold food that may be cooked by indirect heat. It also retains the meat's juices, tenderness, flavor and moistness while you cook a few meals at once.

Author's Bio: Criss Evan, a gaming freak and a blogger. In his spare time he loves to write on various topics. He is a passionate writer.

Monday, 15 July 2013

Change Your Mood, Change Your Flower

Flowers have been a symbol for happiness for as long as anyone can remember. Flowers represent joy and friendship—but now there is actual proof that this is true.

With technology constantly growing and impacting our everyday lives, it’s essential to try and get away from it all, and regain the peace and calmness you need in your life. What better way to do that than have flowers in your home, or yard? It’s a simple fix, and results in an overall better mood, and a less-stressful state of mind. 


Not to mention, flowers are gorgeous.

Flowers give an immediate impact of happiness, and can be easily shown. Where do people usually place or plant flowers: where other people can see them. Flowers have turned into representation of “sharing”. Having flowers throughout your home also present you as a welcoming and giving person.
When flowers are shared amongst friends, it creates a stronger sense of friendship and intimacy between people. You can see and feel their true love and happiness come out as soon as you share this moment. 

Not only do flowers do all of this for you, but it helps connect you better to your social life. When given flowers, people are more likely to keep in touch with friends, or invite/be invited to social functions. Who knew flowers could also represent another platform for social media? 

By having flowers sporadically placed throughout your home, it can also give you a sense of permanence. Flowers take care and needing over time; because of this, it can make your apartment, rental home, or current state of living, seem more like a “home” for you—enhancing your positive mood. 

Flowers are also shown as helping the elderly retain memory longer! The powers of flowers are real—both in healing, and in overall mental happiness. Even placing them at your work environment can help you become more productive and less anxious—tell that to your employer! 

In all, flowers are the perfect remedy to any depression or lack of excitement in your life. By receiving or giving one simple flower, you are exchanging positive and rewarding moods to help enhance your day! So do the right thing, and pick the flower. 

Staci Thomas is an interior design specialist and gardener. When she’s not busy disrupting her dog’s latest archaeological exploration in her garden, she writes for Gaddy’s Plant Hire, specialists in office plant supplies.

Thursday, 4 July 2013

5 safety tips for your kid’s bedroom

When you are thinking to plan for your kid’s room you should be very much careful and selective while procuring their bedroom accessories. The room should be colorful and attractive but along with being eye catching it should also be secure and comfortable. To make their bedroom applicable from both aspects i.e.; the decorative and the functional you should be well aware of the main points which are related to the kid’s room décor.  

Among all of the points the most important yet essential point to ponder is their room should be safe and secure for your kids. The very simple test to check the safety of their room is, while leaving your kids alone in their room you should be fully relaxed. You cannot stay all the time beside your kids, so plan their room in such a way that there won’t be any risk when they are alone in their corner. 

Following are some of the tips regarding planning the kid’s room with all of the safety measures. You can check them all and it will guide you in a proper way.
Have a look!



 
Furniture selection:
 
While selecting furniture for your kids always consider their age level. Do not purchase bunk bed or a mid sleeper beds for kid less than 7 years. Though these beds are provided with safety rails and the staircase is also very secure to climb up on the beds, but the kid under 7 years cannot handle the staircase safely. They are gamy and are thrilling so they will definitely try to play randomly with the bed. So, instead of any sort of undesired situation in the future you should be very selective.

Other then this the bed for less than 7 years old kid should be provided with a short height and with smooth edges. This will prevent your child from falls and injuries. 




Windows and doors:
 
Kids love climbing activities and they even try to climb over windows which results in injuries and damages. To prevent your kids from such an undesired situation keep your windows high, means they should be away from your kid’s reach. Other than this you can also fix additional protective iron grill.
In case of doors, do not fix any locks within your kid’s range, they might try to lock them up which could be hazardous.  




Flooring:
 
Kids often sit and play on floor surface they are more informal in their behaviors. It’s kind of unhygienic to let them play on a plain surface and may cause injuries upon falling accidently. So instead of marking boundaries on his activities, always keep their room covered with a smooth carpet which will be safe for your kid health. 




Electricity outlets:
 
Most of the kids try to insert fingers in switches which is undoubtedly harmful. So, firstly try to keep all of the switches out of their range and if there are any switch boards or light fixtures within their range, then keep it covered with a reliable tape. 




Toys and games:
 
Kid’s room cannot be imagined without toys and games but it’s your duty to pick all safe toys. Do not add up edgy toys; try to pick all soft stuff toys for them. 

So, these were the few safety tools which should be added to your kid’s room. 


Author Bio:
Alisha is a young and talented interior design specialist who likes exploring newer avenues of interior design. In addition to pursuing a rapidly progressing career at a multinational interior design firm for past 3 years, she also write for a reputable online furniture mart named Our World Of Interiors, which offers a comprehensive range of bedroom furniture; beds, sofa beds and mattresses being their specialties. 

 

Tuesday, 18 June 2013

Turning Our Homes into Low Energy Houses

If you were to visit my home at around 7.30 every morning then you would be sure to think that it was one of the most low energy efficient houses that you had ever seen. The children are still trying to sneak out another 5 minutes in bed and my wife is trying to recharge herself in the shower. I’m no better as I am using the morning paper as an excuse to try and doze for a bit on the sofa. Yes our house is incredibly low on energy first thing in the morning. However, unfortunately in reality it is not got to win any low energy houses awards, because the televisions are on in three rooms, the heating is turned high so that the bathroom is cozy and the kids have left their phone chargers plugged into the wall all night. So what can we do to make our homes into future low energy houses (or as the Danes say fremtidens lavenergihuse)?

Well first of all we need to start at the beginning and educate our families into understanding how to lower the amount of energy we use. Leaving an electrical appliance on standby is hardly going to finish off the world, but when we all do it makes a massive difference. Even the longest journey starts with a single step and just getting the kids to turn things off when they are not using them and unplug chargers that are not charging is a step on the right path.




We also need to look at our homes and decide whether we can improve them to make them more energy efficient. Obviously the best low energy houses use green energy to power everything and everything from sunlight to wind is utilized in the process of running a toaster. The problem with green energy is that it generally costs a bit to get started. Solar panels don’t come cheap and, just like wind turbines, they are not easy to place unless you have a large property.

But rather than making the energy we use greener we can make our homes use less energy. To turn our homes into low energy houses we need to make the property more energy efficient and this can be done in many ways.

Roof insulation is a cheap and easy way to reduce the amount of energy that your home uses to stay warm. The more insulation that you have in your loft or roof the less energy your heating will use. So look at improving the insulating quality of your roof and make your home part of the ever growing number of low energy houses.

You can also look at windows and doors in the same way. There are now some wonderfully manufactured energy efficient models that keep the heat in and the cold out and will reduce the amount of energy that is needed to keep you and your family warm in your homes.

So although my family is hard to motivate early in the morning this is exactly what we need to do. Because the sooner we sort out our homes the sooner we make a difference and that is what low energy houses are all about.

This article is written by Mark Neyton. He is a writer curently living in Denmark. He is mostly interested in topics like home improvement, real estate and family. For more of his works you can find him on Twitter.