Granny Flats and Other Useful Ideas for Expansion

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Building a home that uses water efficiently

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Australia is a dry country with limited fresh water supplies. More and more homeowners are looking to build eco homes that have a high water efficiency built into the home design. Here are some of the features that you can consider putting into an eco-friendly home.

Grey water recycling

Rather than using a bucket in the shower to collect grey water you can find ways to use used water from the home in the garden. This can massively reduce the amount of water used by a household, as some sources estimate that up to 30-50 percent of the household water usage goes to watering gardens (although this obviously depends on the type and size of the garden in your household). Common places to offtake water for use in the garden include the laundry (where water comes from the washing) and showers. In order for your garden grey water system to work efficiently and not have regularly, it's best to choose water sources that do not have solids in the water stream, such as dish washing offtake which can have food scraps and sewage which can have paper and faecal matter. 

Some councils place restrictions on how your grey water can be used, so it makes sense to check any local restrictions. 

Rainwater tanks

Collecting rain water is another great way to minimise the amount of water that you use in the home. Collected rainwater can be used in the home in a variety of ways, including gardening, washing or even drinking. If you do choose to drink rainwater it's advisable to filter the water as it's common to get twigs, leaves and birds droppings collecting in rainwater tanks. 

Water efficient fittings

Within the home, you can also integrate water efficient fittings including low-pressure shower heads, taps and toilets. These appliances use a lower volume of water but are expertly designed to give a similar feel and sensation to using different styles of openings. Plumbing fittings are all sold with a WELS (Water Efficiency Labelling and Standards) star rating, so you can review any fittings to check that they have the highest possible star rating of your alternatives, 

Choosing to build an eco home that has high water efficiency is a great way to save money long term, as well as having huge benefits for the environment. By integrating these features in the design of the home you can have an uncompromised lifestyle while still saving water and having a beautiful home.