Let’s face it, in years past a man cave wasn’t built for energy efficiency or to boost sustainability. But today’s home buyers are more eco-conscious than ever before and more and more home builds are centered on the idea of reducing your home’s carbon footprint. Here are some ideas to help you design your ultimate man cave, without compromising on your environmentally conscious values.

Design Ideas

The Rustic

When going rustic, you don’t always have to be “roughing it.” When designing this type of cave, feel free to add convenient touches such as kitchen style appliances, a bathroom, or even a wood burning stove.

When designing your rustic cave, using reclaimed wood is the way to go. Reclaimed wood is wood that has had a previous life; it could have been an old barn, wood that was burned during a forest fire, or part of a century old house. Besides being extremely eco-friendly, reclaimed wood has a rich history.

One of the ultimate man cave favorites is a bar. To make your rustic cave bar more eco-friendly, use reclaimed wood for the frame and top and use natural stain with low or no VOCs. Bar stools can be covered using recycled foam and synthetic fiber.

The Player’s Den

One of the main reasons for a man cave is to have a place to hang out and play some of your favorite games. If you want to keep your cave energy efficient, forget big screen TVs and your 1980 Collector’s Edition Packman machine and go old school. By old school, we mean poker, pool, and darts.

Eco-friendly poker tables should be made of 100$ FSC certified wood, the facing should be constructed of natural linoleum, and the padding should be made of synthetic fiber and post-industrial recycled, re-bonded foam.

Pool tables used to be constructed of high grade wood, formaldehyde, and real leather. These days, eco-friendly tables are considered 92% sustainable and are constructed using low-VOC water based adhesives, synthetic fiber, pre-industrial recycled foam and plastics, and 100% FSC certified wood. So go ahead, save the planet while you shark your friend for cash.

Couples Therapy

A man cave is essentially an area where the adults of the house can sit back, relax, and recharge. The couple’s therapy cave should include items that both you and your partner can enjoy.

One of the number one additions for our design of the couple’s therapy cave includes and energy efficient hot tub. Eco-friendly tubs should be made of 100% natural or recycled materials, should be fully insulated to retain heat and reduce energy usage, and electrical components should be rated according to the highest energy efficiency standard in your state.

What’s a couple’s cave without cocktails? A great idea for a eco-friendly wine rack is re-purpose unused PVC pipe. Simply cut the PVC into wine bottle size pieces and attach using heavy duty glue. Paint and place your rack on a shelf or hang it on the wall.

Selecting the Right Contractor

When selecting your contractor, be detailed when describing which types of materials you would prefer to use. This will ensure appliances, building materials, and electrical components used in the building of your cave will be energy efficient and made of sustainable materials. In addition, be certain your contractor is licensed, has contractor insurance, and can produce solid references.

In some cases, your contractor may need to secure bonds and acquire permits for certain aspects of the build. The regulations regarding licensing, bonding, and contractors insurance can be complicated and vary widely from state to state. Make sure your contractor has the right information regarding regulations before the build.

Building your man cave or couple’s retreat should be an enjoyable and fun experience. If you decide to go eco-friendly, you can rest assured you are building the most sustainable, energy efficient addition possible. Build it green – the environment will thank you.