Remodel your kitchen or bath in your
Virgin island home with Green Ideas for greater value!
Not sure what the market will be doing once your ready to sell your Virgin Islands home? Here are some practical ways to raise the dollar value of your home with remodeling ideas to keep it environmentally sound.
According to realtors across the nation, both kitchen and bath remodeling is popular and done correctly, can bring greater and greener value to your home. Going green while thinking about remodeling your bath or kitchen makes it that much more popular. Lowering your utilities bills, reducing the amount of maintanance and just helping the environment is a great way to go.
Kitchen Remodel - First take note of the most important things you do in the kitchen. Make a list of the common tasks. Is the area set up to allow you to go easily from one taskt to another? Are all the appliances eco friendly? Besides just replacing old or outdated energy insufficient appliances, you can also change flooring, cabinets, countertops and faucets to reflect going green.
Flooring has a huge impact on potential buyers. Here are some examples of "green" flooring you may not have thought of. Bamboo flooring is becoming extremely popular for a number of reasons. Environmentally it is taking the place of wood from trees. Bamboo is a grass and grows much faster then conventional trees. The strand woven bamboo for your kitchen floor not only looks great it does not have the toxic glues and formaldhydes needed to produce non-woven bamboo.
Linoleum is another great way to replace old flooring. Linoleum is completely made of recycled natural material so it is 100% bio-degradable. Do not get it confused with vinyl flooring as they are two different things. Also be sure to try and buy locally.
Ever heard of leather flooring? Since leather is a natural by-product of one of our major food sources, if the hides were not tanned they would be laying on a land fill. Be sure to research leather flooring as it can have some drawbacks.
Cork is another fine flooring. It comes from the bark from a cork tree so tress do not have to be felled in order to obtain it. Be sure that it is properly sealed. Try to find your flooring locally as much as possible as the embodied energy to make these products needs to be considered. Some are special ordered from across the globe!
Rubber is an excellent source to use in well ventilated areas such as the garage floor. These floors can have an odor unless you are using virgin rubber direct from rubber trees. In which case you want to know how far away it has to come to be delivered to your home.
Always be sure to check for the energy star seal on all your big appliances!
Bath Remodel - Energy-efficient and water-wise designs are products you want to reduce your monthly bills and make your home more Eco-Friendly. Home components chosen for their durability and timeless appeal will last longer and cost less to maintain in the long run. When you make living spaces welcoming to a variety of ages and abilities, your home will be marketable to a larger population (a key benefit for resale) and less likely to require costly modifications.
Toilets can be extremely energy efficient. Older toilets use up to 5 gallons of water with each flush. Consider replacing with the newer .8 to 1.6 gallon use. It should say High Efficiency Toilet (HET) and then check with the local water company for rebates!
Painting the bathroom a neutral color will bring on the final touches of a remodeled bath. When looking for the just the right color be sure to use paint that says NO-VOC paint. VOC means Volatile Organic Compound. There are low VOC and zero VOC paints available from just about every brand out there. Be sure to use paint designed specifically for bath or kitchen as these have anti-mold agents in them to protect you.
Consider using ceramic for walls and shower walls. Try and buy locally as where the product is made has as much to do with the environment as does the making of the product.
Low Flow Shower head - Although older versions reduced water pressure, the new models have fixed that and only use about 2 gallons of water per minute.
Wheat board according to Natural Built Home is a distinctive composite material that is created from a rapidly renewable resource, wheat-straw. It is made from a non-toxic binder as opposed to partical board which uses powerful toxins in the glue. the natural color is a golden yellow however it is possible to stain it. Use wheat board for upgrading your kitchen or bathroom cabinets.
Good ventilation may include installing a ceiling fan which will help keep mildew away.
Again we can look to bamboo for floors and counter tops. It is anitmicrobial in nature and water resistant. Although you may want to also take a another look at linoleum. It has similair qualities of bamboo and it is also 100% biodegradable, nontoxic and easy to maintain.
US Virgin Island Resources
Virgin Island Resource Conservation and Development Council, Inc.
US Virgin Islands Recycle News
Eco Home Site