Because of their size and the amount of energy it takes to power one, tiny homes are, for the most part, more sustainable than traditional houses. The average tiny home only consumes about 914-kilowatt hours annually, compared with a traditional home that consumes nearly 13,000.
Sustainability and green living are two of the most common reasons people choose to build or live in a tiny home, to begin with. But, there are ways to make long-term living in a tiny house even more sustainable for the future. It doesn’t take much to make simple changes, but those changes can leave a lasting impact on the future.
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After you’ve saved money and energy on building materials, cut down on your utilities, and found ways to use less water, what’s left to do to make your tiny home safe and sustainable? Let’s look at a few changes you can make today that will leave a lasting impact.
Water conservation is a huge part of sustainable living. Thankfully, when you’re trying to go off the grid, it’s easy to save water and utilize what you have as much as possible. Living in a smaller space will automatically help you to save more water than you would in a traditional home.
But, you can increase your conservation efforts through specific practices. That includes things like building your home in an area with drought-tolerant greenery and letting your grass grow a bit longer to cut down on evaporation. If you have a garden around your tiny home, using a rainwater irrigation system is another way to avoid waste.
Within your home, you can also conserve water by:
- Upgrading to high-efficiency appliances like a washing machine or dishwasher
- Taking shorter showers
- Installing low-flow toilets and showerheads
- Addressing any leaks and fixing them as quickly as possible
Utilizing permaculture in your landscaping is another great way to conserve water, designing an outdoor ecosystem that works as a unit to use and waste as little water as possible.
Saving Energy With Solar Power
Solar power is becoming increasingly popular throughout the country. California recently became the first state to require all new construction to utilize solar panels. If you’re building your own tiny home, you have every opportunity to ‘chase the sun’ and utilize solar power to your advantage.
Not only will using things like solar panels future-proof your home, especially if you plan to retire there, but it can cut back on your utility bills now. Your future proof home design should include supplementary lighting. Using solar panels to power that lighting can make a big difference.
Solar panels placed on the roof of a tiny home can usually generate 100-400 watts of power. Depending on the size of your home and the amount of electricity you use, that can save you thousands of dollars each year, while reducing the amount of energy consumption from the planet.
Sustainable Design and Ideas for Tiny Homes
By nature, tiny homes are more sustainable. They use less power, less water, and take up less space without clearing a lot of land. Whether you’re living by yourself or with a family of three, designing your tiny home with sustainability in mind can be an inexpensive way of living that you can feel good about.
Sustainable architecture and design is something everyone should be making a priority when it comes to building a new house, no matter how small. The goal is to create a brighter future without damaging the planet, so future generations can enjoy the same things we have right now. Because of that, tiny home construction is a clear winner. Most tiny homes:
- Generate 14 times less carbon
- Produce minimal pollution
- Feature low utility costs
You can choose to use more sustainable building materials in your construction efforts, too. That includes things like bamboo, timber, or even recycled materials that can be given a new life and last for years to come.
Plus, if you build your home on wheels, you never have to worry about clearing away land and contributing to deforestation of any kind. You can move around all across the country with your home, exploring the natural beauty of your surroundings.
Whether you already live in a tiny home or you’re thinking about building one, it’s important to keep sustainability in mind. It doesn’t matter why you want to switch to tiny house living; whether it’s to save money or to downsize. What really matters is how your living arrangements can contribute to a better, cleaner future. Thankfully, you don’t have to sacrifice much or make many changes in a tiny home to have a big impact on the environment.
Keep these ideas and suggestions in mind as you go through tiny home living. If everyone made the same changes and lived more sustainably, the environmental issues we’re facing today could be cut down significantly.