WEEK

Why houses in which we live should change

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The kind of buildings in which we spend time has an impact on quality of life. However, we are not conscious of this. On the other side, houses significantly influence surroundings and the environment. More and more often we hear about houses in the context of the most burning problems like air quality, smog, global warming, and energy efficiency. Research conducted by the company Velux points out problems with buildings in Europe. It also indicates how much one can gain by modernizing house.

60 percent of Europeans have single-family homes. These are mostly buildings which require modernization. It is a serious problem because one in six Europeans says that building in which he or she lives is unhealthy. It’s the number of people that is equal to twice the Poland’s population. On average, with the current mode of work, people spend even 90 percent of their time in rooms. When it is humid, cold and lacks natural light, and fresh air, we not only harm our health but also we are far less productive. It turns out that we make our lives more difficult when we deprive ourselves of light, and fresh air. Research shows that only fresh air in a room we work better by 10 percent. Europe loses overall €82 billion because of unhealthy buildings.

European buildings affect the environment significantly. They are responsible for 36 percent of CO2 emissions, and 40 percent of total energy consumption across the EU. This second problem is related to energy efficiency. Heating in Winter and cooling in summer generate high costs in not modernized buildings. Energy efficiency is one of the two (apart from comfort) reasons why Europeans modernize their homes.

According to climate summit, energy efficiency should be gradually increased. However, only two percent of inhabitants living in the European Union decide to renovate their home, and this rate is the same among all EU member states. The modernization of a building is also a contribution towards the fight against global warming and smog. Reduction of energy consumption is also lower CO2 emission produced by the heating system in buildings.

It turns out that people lack awareness of how much renovation can change. In addition to lower energy costs, which may be reduced even more when adding smart home elements, it is also fresh air and more comfort. It is also better health for all of us.