What Is a Green Home? It is More than a Trendy Concept ...
Have you wondered "what is a green home"? Whether you are a first-time home buyer or not, purchasing a home that is ecologically friendly and energy efficient is worth the investment. In fact, having a “green home” is currently a very trendy concept in the real estate market.
According to the U.S. Department of Energy, 115 million American households spend at least $2,200 annually in utility bills. The high cost can largely be attributed to leaky windows and doors as well as energy-sucking appliances and heating/cooling systems.
If you’re in the market for a green home, or looking to make some upgrades to your current home, here are a few places to get started with your green checklist.
Double-check the appliances
A telltale sign that a home can be considered a green home is whether or not it features ENERGY STAR appliances throughout, according to BankRate.com. So don’t be blinded by the beautiful stainless steel refrigerator that may be in the home currently. If that fridge is not an ENERGY STAR certified product, chances are that you will be paying for this from a utility bill perspective.
If you currently own a home and do not have ENERGY STAR appliances, you should consider upgrading when you have the funds available. According to the U.S. Department of Energy, ENERGY STAR appliances can cut your home’s energy use by 10-50 percent while reducing greenhouse gas emissions, water consumption and our reliance on dwindling fossil fuel resources.
Do you feel that breeze?
If you went camping on a cold summer night, only to find yourself using a blanket covered in holes as your only source of keeping warm through the night, chances are you would not be happy. The same can be said about your home if it is not properly insulated, resulting in a significant increase in your utility bills.
A leaky home can certainly cost you, which is why getting an energy audit before purchasing a home can really be a smart thing to do. If you currently own a home and are looking for a quick fix, grab a tube of caulk and seal cracks, seams, openings and worn weather-stripping throughout your home. If that doesn’t do the trick, it may be time to get a professional to check your insulation levels throughout your home.
Consider alternative heating solutions
You do not have to be helpless when it comes to heating or cooling your home. There are many different solutions to heating and cooling your home, many of which can be considered significant improvements to your home’s ecological footprint. Options include:
Although these usually tend to have a high initial price tag, if you plan on being in your current home for longer than 10 years, chances are that you will make your money back and more from the savings in your utility bills.
Just because you are in search of a green home doesn’t mean that you will automatically need to shell out more cash. Adjustments to your wish list when house hunting, or simple upgrades within your current home, will allow you to be efficient and environmentally friendly.
Speaking of environmentally friendly ...
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