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Helping the environment while improving the style of your Santa Barbara home

7 Dec 2012 9:27 AM
Helping the environment while improving the style of your Santa Barbara home

Every year, more Wine Country residents update their homes to be more environmentally friendly. In years past, this has meant utilizing some rather bulky or otherwise inelegant features, such as large solar panels. However, as technology has improved, many people have begun to add eco-friendly features to their Santa Barbara real estate without sacrificing an ounce of classiness.

Better products
One reason that equipping your home with green products has become less obtrusive is because the products themselves are more powerful. According to Green Building Advisor, better solar panels have given environmentally minded homeowners more flexibility in terms of where they install the panels. As recently as a few years ago, the vast majority of these devices were placed high on the south-facing portion of a house's roof. Now, however, it is possible to install them more discreetly - allowing you to help the environment and lower your utility bills without marring the view of your roof.

Santa Barbara homes
This and other techniques have helped some residents of Santa Barbara design eco-friendly houses that still pass the elegance test. Steve and Dede Wood, for example, built a house in Foxen Canyon that is completely self-sufficient in terms of energy and also a shining example of stunning home design.

At first, the decision was made out of necessity, as the parcel on which they eventually built the home was quite far from any power sources.

"There was no house here before - just a dirt road and cows," Steve Wood told Santa Barbara Magazine. "We realized it would be very expensive to run electricity to the land."

Encouraged by the parcel's beauty and the plans already developing in their minds, the Woods worked with an expert to create a solar-powered system that would allow the property to attain self-sufficiency. The couple worked diligently, and ultimately the effort paid off. The system "works like a charm" and the pair could not be happier with their off-the-grid luxury home.

Apply it to your own home
The lessons learned by the Woods can easily be applied to your own Santa Barbara home. There are many consultants and green engineers in the area who can help you craft a program tailored to your specific tastes and property.