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Low Impact Housing

What is Low Impact Housing?

The majority of human habitation methods damage the environment to some extent. Low impact houses are developed to counteract and lessen these damages as much as possible.

Furthermore, it's also good to remember that retrofitting existing properties is much less damaging compared to demolishing and building from scratch. This article will discuss low impact housing further and its many benefits.

  • Building Materials

Building Materials

Most of the time, materials used for low impact housing are local or natural. They also usually don't require to be manufactured in factories and their transportation means almost have no adverse effect on the environment.

Some common materials for this type of housing include clay, timber, cob, lime, hemp, straw, and stone. Unlike those used for other housing types, the materials used for low impact housing are mostly eco-friendly.

Location Options

Low impact houses don't require great sizes of land to be built. Nowadays, productive land is very limited, utilizing the majority of it for a single property will be a waste. Most houses of this type are located close to town to minimize environmental impact.

Benefits of Low Impact Housing
Here are the benefits you get if you choose to get a low impact housing.
Water and Energy Efficiency

Low impact homes don't require huge amounts of energy to maintain their operations. This is made possible through the use of super-insulation, passive solar gain, low-impact appliances, and passive ventilation. Additionally, some low impact housing variations are designed to be passively heated by the sun, body heat, and electrical equipment.

When it comes to water conservation, several systems are implemented such as rainwater harvesting, water-saving devices, compost toilets, and greywater recycling. Once you opt for a low impact housing option, the energy and water preserving systems that come with it are usually more than enough.

Better Health Quality

Biological and chemical pollutants including bacteria, mold, fungi, viruses, and dust mites have greatly increased throughout the years. The major use of synthetic, non-hygroscopic, and non-breathable materials is the probable cause of this problem.

For the sake of our health, humidity levels ranging from 40-60% are highly advised. The utilization of hygroscopic materials that naturally release moisture fixes this issue. Fortunately, low impact housing makes use of these materials.


Property constructions contribute around 10% of energy consumption and carbon emissions in general. However, the activities of the people that live in them are responsible for about 50%, most of them related to heating.

A low impact housing reduces these damages through wise material preferences and innovative design and construction methods. While low impact houses help reduce environmental damage, most factors still depend on the lifestyle of their occupants.

The natural materials used in this type of housing tend to be hygroscopic in nature. This prevents moisture from being trapped in the property, which may cause unwanted rotting and decaying. Repairs for these natural materials are also easy, making the houses they comprise last for a very long time.

Reduced Costs

Since the materials used for low impact housing are either cheap or free, this is probably why you'll save a lot in choosing this housing type. The costs are even further reduced since the natural materials used removes the need for mechanical ventilation.

Minimal Maintenance

This housing type may require shingle replacements, fresh recoats of limewash, or repair jobs every once in a while, and that's it. Some housing options require full replacements which can be costly. As long as you do the required maintenance measures, you can expect your low impact housing to last for many years.


Since the construction of most housing types harms the environment to some extent, those who care about the environment may find choosing difficult. Fortunately, they can opt for low impact housing options to lessen the damages as much as possible.

You also get many benefits if you choose this housing option. This includes water and energy efficiency, better health quality, eco-friendliness, reduced costs, and minimal maintenance. If you are an eco-conscious individual that wants to save money at the same time, choosing low impact housing would surely be the right choice.

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