6 musts for a healthy home

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The pandemic has raised concerns regarding building health to new heights. From now on, priority will be given to health-related aspects of the spaces we dwell in. Achieving maximum levels of thermal comfort and wellbeing whilst reducing energy consumption to a minimum is and will continue to be the fundamental principle underlying all House Habitat’s building projects.

We have drawn up a list of six key aspects intended not only to protect people in their homes, but also to boost their health:

Bioclimatic design: During the building design phase, bioclimatic architecture, which is the basis of the Passivhaus philosophy, takes into consideration the climatic conditions of the location and makes use of the available resources, as well as the orientation, sunlight or vegetation.

Pine casting shadow on the façade of the biopassive house in Begues (Barcelona). A sample of bioclimatic design

In addition to cutting energy consumption levels, this system also guarantees enhanced levels of comfort, including greater natural lighting and ventilation, as well as the natural regulation of indoor humidity and temperature levels.

Wood: The principal material in our constructions is natural, with the capacity to store CO2 and free from environmental radioactivity. Furthermore, its porous composition prevents the build-up of radon gas and VOCs. It is an excellent regulator of humidity and temperature and provides a sense of comfort and wellbeing; it even has anti-stress properties. A further factor for consideration is its soundproofing quality, as noise is a key factor in building wellness.

Natural insulation materials. We normally use materials made of wood or recycled cellulose fibre. They present no hazards to health either during the manufacturing process or once installed.

Natural paint and varnish. Paints made from natural pigment of mineral origin and vegetable varnishes that are free from solvents, biocides or other toxic compounds. They are breathable, regulate humidity levels and do not expel into the air hazardous COVs such as formaldehyde.

Biocompatible electrical installation.  We use shielded cable in order to reduce electromagnetic pollution. This type of installation also reduces the amount of toxic compounds in comparison with conventional alternatives.

Dual flow mechanical ventilation system.  Guaranteeing indoor air quality is one of the requirements for Passivhaus certification. It is based on the extraction of stale air from wet rooms (kitchens, bathrooms or toilets) and supplying fresh air into dry rooms. It enables inhabitants to breathe clean air that is free from contaminating particles and high concentrations of CO2.

Although we could continue adding to the list, these are the absolute musts for ensuring that our homes are healthy.

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