7 Design Tips for an Eco-Friendly Beach House

Building or remodelling a house near the beach? Consider these green and innovative designs.
Design Tips for an Eco-Friendly Beach House

According to the Bureau of Statistics, many of Australia’s coastal regions experienced population growth since 1996. Homeowners find it hard to resist the view of our country's stunning beaches. If you're planning to build your home near the coast, consider these tips that will help you build an eco-friendly beach house:

Design and build with the trees

Your architect/designer must strive to create a design that limits the number of trees you need to cut during construction. Include the trees in your home design. In return, the trees will provide you with shade. It cools your home for free.

Embrace glazed doors and windows

Most people who decide to build properties near the coast are after the view. Having large and low-emissivity windows can help. Low-e windows are energy-efficient because it uses a glass that emits low levels of heat inside the house. The glass has a thin and transparent coating which reflects long-wave infrared energy, preventing unwanted heat absorption.

Tip: Angled windows will allow more light to come inside the house. Don't forget to install operable windows for those aid in ventilation. Louvre windows and shutters look great in outdoor spaces. When opened, these catch the cool sea breeze, reducing the need for air-conditioning. Read: How to Choose the Right Glass External Doors for You

Choose durable timber

Using timber inside and outside the house is highly sought-after when it comes to building beach houses. It provides warmth and a touch of nature in the design. We personally like the look of weathered wood for it adds an interesting texture to the structure.

When choosing timber, go with varieties that are resistant to pests and water. Opt for something strong and low maintenance like cedar. It will develop a beautiful grey patina, which makes it a look like beautiful driftwood. Refrain from repainting them so you can enjoy them in their natural state.

Don't want to use timber because it's high maintenance? Consider using floor veneers or wall cladding material that looks like timber. You'll achieve the same aesthetics without compromising the durability of the design. Read: How Timber Battens Add Flair and Function to Your Home

Use natural materials that emit low VOC

Volatile organic compounds (VOCs) are harmful chemicals emitted by certain materials and mixes with the air we breathe. High levels of VOC indoors are extremely hazardous and pose dangers to our health.

One way to improve indoor air quality is through using natural fabrics like cotton, linen, cashmere, wool, silk, and sisal. Natural fabrics emit lower levels of VOC compared to synthetic carpets, rugs, furniture covers, etc. When paired with wood, natural fabrics enhance the room's warmth. These make the Earthy vibe stronger, perfect for beach houses.

You should consider using low-VOC paints too. Paint releases harmful chemicals into the air as it dies. So, choose varieties with low-VOC labels in the packaging. We strongly recommend Benjamin Moore paint products for this. 

Design and build homes with a small footprint

The more land your home occupies, the more change it makes on the landscape. Building near the beach, you might stress and displace certain flora and fauna.

One way to reduce a home’s footprint is to give it a smaller base and build more space upwards.

Move bedrooms to the lower level

When you live in a tall structure beside the beach, you will have wonderful views on the higher floors and the roof.

If you want, you can move some of your bedrooms on the ground floor. This will allow more living space with wider views of the surroundings. No worries, you can still have a view of the beach from your bedroom. Here, the designers even built a pool on the upper level of this home.

Enjoy an open-plan layout

Building a beach house, you've done efforts to improve daylighting and natural ventilation. You can enjoy your efforts more when you follow an open-plan interior.

As we all know, the open-plan trend encourages homeowners to design one large space that you can use flexibly. Ideally, there are no walls and partitions in an open-plan space, allowing natural light and air to flow freely in the house. ◼️

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Contact our Brisbane-based building designers for more info.



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