Happy Earth Day! Celebrate by making your home more energy efficient. These 5 tips to make your home more energy efficient are fairly easy and make a big difference. We have used Nest thermostats for about 4 years now and they made a significant impact on our energy bills. Our new home is nestled among many old growth trees and they keep our house cool on warmer days and block wind on colder days. (Next on our list is to check out smart light switches. )Try these for yourself!
Go Green and Get Greener in Your Wallet!
Going green at home doesn’t just help the environment – it can help your wallet, too. By making certain energy-efficient updates, you can save money on heating and A/C bills, and you can potentially boost your house’s value as well. Here are some changes to consider making.
1. Upgrade Appliances
In recent years, appliances have come a long way in becoming more energy-efficient. Some newer dishwashers and washing machines, for example, are designed to use much less energy and water than previous models. If you’re not sure which appliances are worth upgrading, get some additional information here.
Tip: And if you are thinking about selling your home, more energy-efficient appliances can increase the value of your home, in some cases by as much as 6%.
2. Install a Programmable Thermostat
With tools like programmable thermostats, you don’t even have to get out of bed in the morning to crank the air or heat up. Instead, you can pre-schedule what you want the exact temperature at home to be and when. That means you also don’t have to worry about forgetting to change the temperature before you leave home for the day.
“You can save as much as 10% a year on heating and cooling by simply turning your thermostat back 7°-10°F for 8 hours a day from its normal setting,” according to the Department of Energy. “The percentage of savings from setback is greater for buildings in milder climates than for those in more severe climates. You can easily save energy in the winter by setting the thermostat to 68°F while you’re awake and setting it lower while you’re asleep or away from home.”
3. Add New Insulation
Making sure your home is properly insulated can go a long way. If you add insulation to attics, floors and crawlspaces, you can reduce unwanted air leaks and save significantly on your heating and A/C bills.
You can add more insulation yourself or hire a home energy audit professional to evaluate your house and do the work. Homeowners can also follow Energy Star’s suggested insulation levels that match their climate and area.
4. Plant Trees
Trees are a natural source of shade, so why not plant some around your house? They’ll help cool off your home in the summer and they’ll add to your landscape. Here are some types of trees that are good to plant.
5. Install Energy-Efficient Windows
Energy-efficient windows will help insulate your house and reduce drafts and outside noise. Modern windows have different types of coatings you can choose based on the climate where you live, with some allowing more sunlight in than others. For added savings and protection from outside elements, you also have the option of choosing double- or triple-pane windows. Click here for some ideas on window framing materials.
If you’re thinking about making any big changes to your home, even if they don’t include making energy-efficient updates, we offer a variety of home loan renovation options. Contact a PrimeLending loan officer to learn more about all of your choices.
From the PrimeLending blog by Sarah Crandall