4 Worthwhile Energy-Efficient Upgrades
By David Hutton, Mundy Mill, a new home community in Oakwood, Ga., near Gainesville, Ga., committed to providing high quality, efficient, single-family homes in Hall County
If you’re a new homeowner or considering a renovation it’s important to consider ways of putting more money back in your pocket by making you home more efficient. With more emphasis being placed on eco-friendly homes and high efficiency technology improving over the past few years, it’s a good idea to consider a few worthwhile energy-efficient upgrades to your home.
1. Your Most Used Appliances
It’s common for homeowners to consider upgrading appliances. Often it’s the appliances they don’t replace that have the largest impact on their home efficiency. Those most used appliances in a home tend to be your refrigerator, laundry machine and dishwasher. Replacing these with new, more efficient models could be a great investment and save you mounds of money in the long run. Also, these appliances, although more energy efficient, have improved on what they do, keeping food better, longer, being kinder on clothing and cleaning glasses and dishes more easily. When considering the long-term impact of energy efficiency and less wear and tear on your most used household items and clothing, it’s a true investment worth making.
2. Insulate Your Pipes
You use water daily, most times without even thinking about it. Of course, cooking, showering and washing your hands are the most common uses. Imagine if you could reduce the amount of water used every time you shower, or washed your hands, simply and cheaply. Would you do it? Insulating your water pipes can do just that. By insulating pipes, not only do you not have to wait as long for hot water, you can reduce your overall hot water temperature setting. You’ll use less water, and your hot water heater won’t run as much. That’s money saved.
If looking for a new home or upgrading your own home, windows are a worthwhile upgrade. Although it may lead to slightly higher building costs or install costs, the money you’ll save by installing new windows in your home is important both for winter and summer efficiency. New window applications are focusing on making homes more efficient year round. If you’re wondering if your windows and doors are working efficiently, have them tested for tightness. You might be surprised by how drafty those cheap windows are.
Many think landscaping is an aesthetic feature only. Although landscaping can make your home look more welcoming and provide an attractive surrounding to your home, landscaping can also affect the efficiency of your home. Not only are trees healthy for the environment, by shading your home, less energy will be needed to keep your home cool. Landscaping can also provide shelter to your air units, allowing them to function more efficiently and effectively saving you money. Landscaping, if done by a professional and well maintained can increase the value of your home, which never hurts. Over the long run, having landscaping in place can contribute to the aesthetic and economic impact of your home.