Home Updates That Can Pay Dividends Over The Long Run
With more people spending increased time at home due to COVID-19, there’s even more reason to upgrade your space. In fact, a Harvard University study expects 8.6% growth in home remodeling and maintenance spending through the middle of 2022. While most people initially envision the design and aesthetic changes they want to achieve with home renovations, there are more aspects in the process to consider like improving your home’s energy efficiency. Whether you’re trying to save money or be more environmentally friendly, reducing your home’s energy consumption has many benefits.
Investing in energy efficient renovations can save you money in the long run by cutting down on your electricity bill. These upgrades to your home can also reduce maintenance costs, increase the resale value of your home, and make your space more comfortable throughout the year. Not sure where to start? Getting a home energy audit can determine how efficient your home is and identify areas where you might be wasting energy. Once that’s completed, here are a few energy efficient home renovations to consider.
INVEST IN NEW APPLIANCES
Common home appliances such as refrigerators, washing machines, dryers, and air conditioners can be major sources of energy consumption in your home. Since these tools are so frequently used, ensuring that they’re energy efficient can have a significant impact on your electricity bill. Especially if you’ve had your appliances for an extended period of time, it’s probably worth replacing them; they waste more energy toward the end of their life span which can cost you more money long-term on utility costs.
When researching new models, look for appliances that are Energy Star certified which means the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has reviewed and approved the product for optimal energy efficiency. To make sure your new appliances last long-term, you should also consider getting home warranty plans to protect them from future issues. This policy covers repairs and even full replacements of your major appliances and home systems which can save you money from any unanticipated expenses later on.
UPDATE YOUR LIGHTING
Updating your lighting systems is another simple way to conserve energy at home. Switching your current light bulbs to LED models is an easy way to make your home more energy efficient, and is more affordable compared to other home improvements. In fact, LED lights use up to 90% less energy and last up to 25 times longer than conventional incandescent bulbs which makes them cheaper to operate. Although LED bulbs may be more expensive than their counterparts, their extended longevity and energy efficiency make them worth the investment. Don’t forget about changing your light fixtures either. Utilizing overhead lighting rather than lamps allows you to rely on less electric light sources and can make a more dramatic change in your home’s appearance and design.
If your home tends to be drafty, it may be due to leaky windows. Especially if you have older, single-pane windows, finding a more effective replacement can help improve your home’s insulation and prevent too much warm or cool air from escaping. Energy efficient windows do a better job at keeping the interior temperature of your home regulated, which makes your home cheaper to heat and cool and reduces your overall energy usage. Newer windows can also help better protect your home from varying climate and weather conditions in your area. As the seasons change, weatherizing your home is an additional precaution that can help reduce your energy consumption and cut back on your electric bill.
While shopping, consider buying double or triple pane windows with a wooden frame to get the best value for insulation. If a full window replacement isn’t doable, you can also install storm windows over your current ones for an extra layer of protection or add caulking or weather stripping around your old windows as a less costly insulation fix.
IMPLEMENT SMART TECHNOLOGY
With the world becoming increasingly connected through new technology and devices, it only makes sense for your home to reap the same benefits. Installing smart technology in your home can not only make your life easier, but it can also lower your energy consumption. Devices like a smart thermostat can increase your home’s energy efficiency by letting you adjust temperatures from your phone and create customizable schedules based on your lifestyle and habits. For instance, you can automatically lower the temperature when you’re away from home, at night when you’re sleeping, or in other instances to save money. Additionally, using smart plugs for your lights and other devices offers similar benefits and allows you to turn them on and off from the convenience of your phone or on a schedule. Look for a smart plug that supports energy monitoring to better track your energy usage and spending.
With Payless Power’s daily usage alerts, you can easily monitor your electricity usage and find ways to reduce your consumption and your energy bill. Find a prepaid Payless Power plan in your zip code and start saving money today.