How climate resistant is your home?
Are you building a new home? Or are you renovating your current home to meet modern ecological standards, like installing energy-efficient light bulbs and climate-friendly windows? How about subsidence coverage on your property? There’s a good chance your home is behind on some of these updates.
A recent study revealed that up to 7,800 homes and 3,000 commercial properties were affected in the great winter flood of 2013-2014. In spite of warning by the local authorities, a good percentage of homes in the UK still aren’t climate ready.
How Do You Prepare Your Home?
You can limit your house to the effects of climate change through adaptation. Adaptation simply means taking steps to increase the resilience of your home against climate change. Some consequences of climate change are now unavoidable and as such we can only hedge against them. These dangers include the effects of greenhouse gases, air pollution, and sudden heat waves.
Some of the adaptation measures you can use to protect your home are simple and make no major changes to your property. You may actually have made some changes already, such as buying gel memory foam from an eco-friendly store like Brentwood Home or by double-glazing your sash windows. Unfortunately, there are other changes that aren’t as straightforward and require more preparation.
Adaptation usually follows a two-pronged approach:
- Managing current risks
- Climate proofing for the future
Here’s a to-do list for each adaptation:
Managing current risks
- Use restrictors to secure your open windows at night.
- Install ceiling fans.
- Set up shady alcoves in your garden.
- Register with your local Environmental Agency’s flood warning service.
- Fix waterproofing sheets on your roofs, outside walls, and doors.
- Take out a comprehensive flood insurance policy.
- Raise the door thresholds on the ground floor.
Climate proofing for the future
- Install window shutters.
- Paint your home’s exterior with brighter colours to reflect heat.
- Plant more trees for extra shade.
- Place your electrical appliances above flood level.
- Plant thick vegetation for water absorption.
- Tile your floors.
- Fix wall sockets above flood level.
- Consider relocating to a less isolated place.
Motives for our Actions
Given severe climate events taking place, like the massive 2013 floods in the North, we can’t afford to leave homes vulnerable to a similar occurrence.
Another reason to practice adaptation is to reduce exposure to financial loss. According to accountancy firm KPMG, the three-day flooding of Northern England – from Hull to Lancashire – cost a total £5 billion pounds. Unfortunately, many homes and businesses in the area were underinsured.
Finally, how environmentally conscious are you? It’s one thing to adapt your home, but it’s another to play your part in preventing further environmental damage. Ensure that you act sustainably so that future generations can enjoy the planet just as much as you.
To find out more about how you can protect your home and reduce your carbon footprint, consult your local environmental protection agency.