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From floors to faucets, homeowners like energy-saving products

April 12, 2014

Hardwood FloorsHomeowners today are savvy consumers who look for sustainable products to integrate into their home design. Along with the durability of engineered hardwood flooring like the Chestnut Hill collection by Anderson Floors, efficient radiant heating and water-saving touchless faucets are among the features that pay for themselves in no time.

CBS News reported that homeowners will see a noticeable decline in their water bills when they install high-efficiency shower heads, low-flow toilets and dishwashers designed to use less H2O. Trying to fill the large, luxurious tubs that were popular a few years ago in master bathrooms proved to be an economic headache that few want to repeat when they do a bathroom makeover these days.

Durable, but stylish floors
Their parents may have loved digging their toes into wall-to-wall carpeting, but current home buyers list wood floors frequently on their must-have lists, according to Zillow. While both natural hardwood and engineered floors exude beauty and warmth, the engineered variety is excellent for rooms that see heavy foot traffic and loads of family activities.

Made of several wood layers compressed together, engineered hardwood has the durability to stand up to the demands of a busy, modern household. It often comes at a more affordable price and may increase the home's resale value when it's time to move to a new house. If homeowners decide to refinish their floors, engineered varieties take a new finish as well as natural wood flooring. They also resist stains and moisture well, so they're a great choice for kitchens where spills are more likely to occur.

Efficient heating
Radiant heat panels placed beneath all types of floors and installed in walls have also become increasingly popular in cold climates. They're not only an energy-saving alternative to traditional heating sources, but air quality is improved because they operate without baseboards where dust tends to accumulate.

When radiant heat is installed under wood floors, the greater structural stability offered by engineered woods make them a better choice over solid hardwood. While radiant floor heat is popular in bathrooms, it can be used anywhere in a house. Installing it in a three-season porch, for instance, instantly transforms the room into added livable space.

In regions that have heavy snowfall, radiant heat has also become popular for heating outdoor walks, driveways and stairs to melt away ice and snow without the need for shoveling.