While the building and buying of homes in some parts of the country slowed in recent years due to the challenging economy, some who have built or bought homes have done so with energy savings in mind.
Unlike some older homes that need major renovations in order to remove energy-robbing areas of the residence, those building new homes today can do so with saving money in mind.
So, should you be about to or in the process of building or buying a home, how can you go about saving money on your energy needs?
Among the ways:
1. Focus on your heating and cooling needs – One of the normal routines that you will go through with your house is heating and cooling it during the year. In the summertime, you want to keep it as cool as possible, meaning knowing where windows in the home will receive the least bit of light and heat. For those that will be getting their fair share of light, make sure to install blinds or other window covers to keep the heat out. In the wintertime, the goal is to have as much light as possible coming into the residence to heat it;
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2. Insulation is key – Another important factor in reducing your energy costs is having the proper insulation in place for things like walls and attics. By having the proper insulation in place, you reduce the rate whereby heat escapes the home in winter or enters in the summer. Should your home not have wall insulation in place, you can use blown-in insulation for areas that in essence are more-or-less continuous wall cavities. In the event you have an attic in the home that is unfinished, it may be best to upgrade the insulation there;
3. Check those windows – In the event the insulation around those windows is not good, make the proper corrections, especially before leaving cracks and openings to suck away your winter heating expenses. You can replace those outdated and leaking windows with energy-efficient models, allowing you to save money. The home’s resale value also increases with each upgrade you make should you decide to sell at some point down the road;
4. Replace aging hot water heaters/furnaces – One of the costlier energy expenses can be a furnace or hot water heater that is taking money right out of your wallet. Quite simply, a heating service tech can help you determine when building a new home or buying a home on how efficient such appliances are. In the event you have a residence with boilers and/or radiators/baseboard heat, look to modern condensing boiler featuring outdoor reset or likewise feedback controls for improved savings;
5. Zero in on the proper lighting – Another area that can put the spotlight on savings is your home’s lighting. The goal here is to replace incandescent light bulbs by opting for compact fluorescent lamps. You will find that the expense for CFL is less than one-third of the expense put towards incandescent. Keep in mind when setting up the lighting that usage impacts how much time it will take to recoup your investment;
6. Review your needs – If you are operating a business out of your residence, do you have items like computers, printers, fax machines and more running on a regular basis? If so, are you turning them off at night “sleep mode” in order to save money? Whether you are building that new home that will include office space or taking over an older one, make sure to review your needs on a regular basis so you can maximize your energy savings.
With all the expenses that come with building or buying a home, along with maintaining it over time, are you an energy efficient home owner?