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Greening Up Your Home for Health and Curb Appeal

Greening Up Your Home for Health and Curb Appeal

by Chris Petry

In recent years, more and more people have embraced green technology to slow the creation of non-renewable waste, save on energy bills, and create a more eco-friendly and sustainable future. Homeowners have increasingly incorporated greener building materials and fixtures into their renovations, including bamboo-flooring, recessed LED lighting, rooftop solar panels, more efficient HVAC systems, and electric car charging ports to decrease their carbon footprint. Despite tax initiatives and long-term savings, upfront installations can still cost hundreds if not thousands of dollars.
Fret not! If going completely green isn’t in your home’s near future, there are still things you can do to increase the healthfulness of the environment, improve curb appeal, and save money. In fact, it’s as easy as a little gardening and attention to landscaping.

First, let’s start with indoor gardening. Healthline.com actually posted a scientifically-backed list of some of the purported benefits of keeping plants in your home, as recently as 2020. On that list, they reference a study published in the Journal of Physiological Anthropology that found plants in our living spaces can make us feel more soothed, comfortable, and in touch with our natural surroundings. So, at the very least, one creates a more relaxed atmosphere by keeping house plants. The big takeaway from the piece, however, is the benefit indoor plants have on the air quality in your home. Ferns, spider plants, rubber trees, and bamboo reduce contaminants in the air you breathe. It’s worth noting, however, that follow-up studies indicate you’d need an awful lot of greenery to equal the ability of an air-purifying machine. Still, I ask, which method is more natural and uses less energy to perform its function? Special aside for pet owners, be sure to do your research on any plants you introduce to your home. Some plants can be extremely toxic to dogs, cats, and birds.

Now, outdoor gardening! There are numerous benefits to maintaining your own garden. For one, you can save on produce and we all know we’re in need of savings right now! Not only will you save money, you’ll be fully aware of what chemicals, vitamins, and nutrients are entering your food. As debate around the use of certain pesticides, genetically modified organisms, and growth hormones rages on, you’ll be able to sleep tight, knowing your own veggies are as contaminant free as possible.

According to Bankrate.com, landscaping can increase your home’s resell value by 15-20% and a well-maintained garden certainly qualifies. Additionally, more traditional forms of landscaping for your home, such as clean flower beds with fresh soil and mulch, stylish attractive partitions and retaining walls, immaculately-trimmed hedges, finely edged walkways, and healthy-looking grass, shrubs, and trees send the message that you A) value curb appeal B) care about the environment, and C) are likely to apply the same level of effort and maintenance to the interior of your home. These are all good things. It’s good for your neighbors, it’s good for you, and it’s good for anyone who might seek to buy your home in the future.

As we discussed at the beginning of the article, homeowners and by extension homebuyers, are more concerned than ever with the environmental impact of their homes. Doing things to mitigate that impact make your home much more appealing. Of course, a number of the steps taken to preserve the environment are also backed, to some degree, by existing science. Finally, you can save money via the utilization of environmental tax deductions, growing some of your own food, and by bolstering the value of your property.
So, this year, before you find yourself consumed with another interior-focused project, take a second to consider the value of a home that is just as well maintained outside as it is on the inside. Few will argue that they prefer higher electric bills, fuel taxes, higher property taxes, and overpriced bell peppers. So, make your home the green paradise it deserves to be. The benefits are all yours!