Making your home more energy efficient will not only save you hundreds of pounds over the long run, it will also give you the satisfaction of knowing you are playing your part in reducing the emissions that lead to global warming. Installing cavity insulation, double glazing and a new ultra efficient condensing boiler are obvious but expensive options. They may also be unnecessary if you use some or all of the design advice given in this very article!
The average U.K. home uses 44% of its energy on heating alone. Therefore by insulating your home sufficiently in key areas you could be reducing your energy costs quite drastically. Choosing carpets and a thick underlay in the bedrooms is a sensible first step and besides providing a little under-foot comfort on a cold morning, could actually help keep your ground-floor rooms a little warmer too. How can this be possible? Heat, as most of us are aware, rises so be covering the upstairs in carpet you are effectively trapping the heat below much in the way as your loft insulation does. If you prefer wooden flooring, you can still create sufficient insulation by laying mineral wool padding underneath.
Doubling up on your windows will also drastically improve the heat keeping powers of your home. By this I mean having Curtains and a blinds system. A set of horizontal Blinds correctly angled will help keep out the cold whilst allowing light from the high winter sun to enter the room. Then as the evening draws in you can close the curtains to really keep cosy. Whilst on this topic, don’t underestimate how much the look of a room can actually make you feel warmer. Really layer up the Soft Furnishings in your home for a warmer atmosphere that costs nothing to heat! Similarly the colour you choose for a room will have a strong effect on how cold you feel. Avoid cool colours and opt for warmer shades. Not only will this help beat the gloom of the winter months, it will make a large cavernous room feel smaller and therefore cosier.
When it comes to lighting, choose the fluorescent bulbs over the old fashioned filament variety. They may cost a little more but they last up to six times longer and use much less energy. In terms of décor, light up feature areas with floor and table lamps rather than whole rooms with rows of spotlights. Not only will this save energy but it is a much more dramatic design statement and will really bring your furniture to life. With a decorative floor standing next to it, an old single seater becomes a really appealing reading corner- lighting really defines the use of an area when used sparingly.
These all may seem like small ineffectual measures, and to an extent when used alone they are. But the cumulative effect really does add up to big savings, not just for you but for the environment around you. Never underestimate the power of the individual; the biggest changes this world has seen all happened one person at a time.