Most of us want to own a home, but it’s an expensive exercise. We often settle for a house that needs work to get a better deal.
The challenge with buying a property that needs renovating is its cost.
A top recommendation is to put off making the cosmetic improvements that make your house look nice. Instead, an excellent place to start is with upgrades that save you money over the long term and make your home more energy efficient.
2 Upgrades To Reduce Energy Costs
Energy, like taxes, keeps going up. Investing in energy-efficient solutions in your home will reward you immediately and over the long term.
If you haven’t had a building inspection done recently, start with getting a report done. The information will tell you where your house is vulnerable to the weather, including gaps that prevent your home from staying warm in winter and cool in summer. Work on fixing these issues first.
An old heating system like a heater or boiler is less energy efficient, which can drive up your heating bills. Check the age of your heating system. While it may still operate, it may cost you a fortune in energy costs. For example, any heating system over 15 years old will cost more than a new, more energy-efficient solution.
Types of Efficient Heating Systems
Did you know there are many energy-efficient ways to heat the water you need in your home? Research these options and install the system that works for your home.
Heat pumps are known for their energy efficiency, as they can provide more heating or cooling energy than the electrical energy they consume. They are considered environmentally friendly, mainly if the electricity used to power them comes from renewable sources. But what are they, and how do heat pumps work?
Heat pumps move heat from one location to another using a small amount of energy. They are commonly used for heating and cooling purposes in buildings. There are two main types of heat pumps: air-source heat pumps and ground-source (or geothermal) heat pumps.
The most common type of heat pump is an air-source heat pump. It extracts heat from the air and uses it to heat water. They are more energy-efficient in moderate climates.
Another option is a ground source heat pump. It works by using the stable temperature of the ground to heat water. It is more energy-efficient but may have higher upfront costs.
If your environment allows it, a geothermal heat pump may be ideal. These heat pumps use the earth’s stable temperature below the surface to heat a home.
Heat pumps can result in substantial long-term savings and even be eligible for government incentives in some areas!
Solar Heating Systems
Solar water heaters use the sun’s energy to heat water for domestic use or space heating. Plus, if you use a passive solar design, you can use your home to maximize natural heating through sunlight.
High-Efficiency Gas Furnaces
A condensing gas furnace extracts more heat from combustion, making it more efficient than traditional furnaces.
Or you can consider a pellet stove that burns small pellets made of compressed biomass materials, providing a renewable and efficient heating source.
If a boiler resonates with you, consider a condensing Boiler. Like condensing furnaces, these boilers extract more heat from combustion.
Using smart thermostats and zoning systems will allow you to heat specific zones of your home based on occupancy, reducing energy waste.
Insulation reduces energy costs by minimizing the transfer of heat between the interior and exterior of a building. It acts as a barrier, slowing the movement of heat through walls, ceilings, floors, and other structural elements.
Improving the insulation and sealing of your home can enhance the effectiveness of any heating system by minimizing heat loss.
Winters can be cold, and heating isn’t the most affordable thing to have to have on all day and night. However, one of the most effective ways to increase energy efficiency in your home is by upgrading your insulation.
Proper insulation can significantly reduce heat loss during winter and keep your home cool during summer.
One area that is often overlooked is the loft. Upgrading your insulation in this space can significantly impact your heating and cooling costs.
While the upfront insulation costs might be a lot, it’s worth it for the long-term savings on energy bills. The government may even offer incentives and grants for homeowners who improve their home’s energy efficiency!
It’s important to note that the effectiveness of insulation depends on factors such as installation quality, the type of insulation used, and the overall building design.
The two recommended home improvements that will reduce energy use and provide long-term value are an energy-efficient heating system and insulation. Additionally, before you invest in either, ensure your home is weathertight. Replace the cladding and seal gaps that will leak the air inside your home.