A home is a huge investment, here in San Francisco or anywhere. But beyond the money, it’s where we spend a good chunk of our time. That’s one of the reasons it should be a place filled with love and laughter. Ideally, a home should also pull double duty as a healthy home base. Our very own David Feldman from Compass Philadelphia put together quite the list for making your home just that. From best practices to simple swaps, here are 27 easy steps to a healthier home.
A Healthy Kitchen
- Proper ventilation will keep cooking odors to a minimum. Open a window or use a vented hood when cooking, especially if you’re using gas.
- Filter drinking water. A whole-house water filter is best.
- Pests are best managed with integrated pest management (IPM), which emphasizes tiered strategies and avoids hazardous chemicals.
- Avoid plastic and non-stick cookware and opt for glass or cast-iron instead.
- Keep a fire extinguisher stashed nearby.
A Healthy Bedroom
- Turn your bedroom into a sanctuary by making it a space for rest. Keep out items that activate the brain – that includes devices!
- Use darkening draperies and get rid of stimulating blue light. This is a space for rest and relaxation.
- Consider draperies with sound-reducing linings to minimize exterior noise. Earplugs work well in a pinch.
- We breathe roughly 11,000 liters of air daily, and one-third of that breathing happens in the bedroom. Invest in a good air purifier and a few house plants. Succulents and air plants are good options if you lack a green thumb.
- As a rule, people sleep best when the temperature is between 65 and 70 degrees. Keep the bedroom cool at night.
A Healthy Bathroom
- Keep moisture levels down by opening a window or venting to the outside.
- Avoid commercial air fresheners, which use a synthetic mix to mask odors. Essential oils can be diffused effectively.
- Opt for green cleaners that are proven both safe and effective by certified third-party organizations, including EPA Safer Choice, Green Seal, or ECOLOGO.
- If you’re a label scanner in the kitchen, keep that habit going in the bathroom. Many personal products contain toxic ingredients, and chances are good that the more fragrant they are, the worse they are. Opt for products with fewer, more recognizable ingredients.
- Preventative fixtures can help you avoid falls and injuries. Nearly 250,000 of these accidents are reported annually, so consider the wisdom of strategic placement.
A Healthy Basement
- Keep this space dry with a de-humidifier. Even a small one will work wonders.
- Avoiding carpeting in basement spaces. Hard floor coverings are easier to keep dry and avoids mold.
- Don’t store chemicals in the basement, even if they’re sealed.
A Healthy Outdoor Space
- Avoid harmful pesticides and herbicides, many of which have been linked to cancer. Instead, investigate non-toxic options.
- Be mindful of air quality in attached garage spaces. Never leave a car running in the garage, and be sure it’s well ventilated.
- Air seeps into the cracks and holes in the exterior walls, floors, and ceilings of your home. Make sure these are effectively sealed.
- Be security minded and secure your home’s perimeter. Motion-detecting or outdoor lighting can be effective.
- Create an action plan and tools in the event of a natural disaster or blackout. Start with a generator, flashlight, batteries, food, water, blanket, etc.
A Healthy Home
- The importance of proper ventilation can’t be overstated. If outside air is clean, use it. If not, install interior air filtration. Without it, the concentration of air pollutants could be two to five times higher inside.
- Get in the habit of taking off your shoes at the door. It’s a simple way to avoid tracking in all of the filth you walk through outside every day.
- Make sure that smoke detectors and carbon monoxide detectors work, and change their batteries regularly.
- Let there be light! Humans as a species need it to thrive. Keep windows clean and open shades to let in natural sunlight.
If a healthier home here in San Francisco sounds wonderful, but you need to nail down the home part first, I can help. Let’s discuss your options for buying in the Bay – contact me today.