As if you needed one more reason to go green, new research shows that energy efficient home improvements can actually increase the value of your home on the market! The study found that using green labels such as Energy Star or LEED increased home values by an average of 9%, whereas high efficiency HVAC systems led to an average price increase of 5.8%.
How can you take advantage of the high demand for energy efficient homes? Make a few of these easy DIY upgrades:
Change the water flow.
One of the easiest green home improvement projects that you can tackle on your own is making the switch from regular faucets and showerheads to newer, energy efficient models. This simple switch won’t affect the quality of your showers, but it will reduce the amount of water that you use by about half! Considering the number of faucets and showerheads that most homes have, this little change could add up in a big way on next month’s energy bill, and on the selling price of your home.
Install crawlspace insulation.
No one wants to move into a home with cold, drafty floors, so install crawlspace insulation to make your home cozier and more valuable. Without this insulation, your heating and cooling system could be working overtime since so much energy is lost through the unprotected flooring.
This energy efficiency improvement can be done on your own, or with the help of a professional. Simply purchase insulation materials from a local hardware store, and apply them between the floor joists underneath the subfloor. Make sure to insulate any plumbing or ductwork that resides within the crawlspace to maximize the energy savings.
Install Energy Star windows.
Energy Star windows will pay for themselves with the amount that they’ll save you on monthly energy bills, plus they will increase the value of your home if you decide to sell. These green windows will prevent air from leaking out and creeping in, increasing the overall energy efficiency of your home. When picking out the windows to use in your home, be sure to research which kind you should get based on your location and the direction that the window faces. To install these windows, all you have to do is carefully stick to the instructions. For an added dose of energy efficiency, place draping around your new windows so you can prevent the room from overheating in the summer. That way, you won’t have to turn your cooling system on full blast to feel comfortable.
Replace your thermostat.
New models of thermostats can be programmable, allowing you to control the temperature of your home when you’re not around. This way, you can turn the heating and cooling system off while you’re at work, but program it to restart with enough time to make your home comfortable before you get home. Having a thermostat that lets you control settings like these can reduce your energy bill by as much as 15% per month! Fortunately, this energy efficient home improvement can be easily done without the help of a professional.
Even if you don’t plan on selling your home in the near future, making these energy efficient upgrades are an investment that will be sure to pay off, whether you’re the homeowner or not!