There are many reasons why energy efficient home building is worth the extra cost up front. Energy efficiency is a major consideration when buying a home, and would positively impact your resale value if you ever decided to sell. As long as you own your home, energy efficiency means you spend less for necessary utilities. That means more money in your monthly budget.
While there are many sorts of upgrades available, only upgrades that increase energy efficiency pay you back every month. Always take energy efficient upgrades, but don’t stop there. Be sure to research energy efficiency to get the most energy efficient home possible, even if it isn’t part of someone’s energy efficient upgrade package. Energy star is a great place to start, but if you can exceed energy star that is even better.
Insulation – There are three leading types of insulation, and one extra means of attic insulation:
• Polyurethane panels
• Polystyrene panels
• Closed Cell blown insulation
• Radiant Barrier Attic
The thicker the insulation the more effective it is. Density is also important. For maximum efficiency insulation should be at least five inches thick and six is better. Some panels are even thicker.
Properly installed triple glazed windows, and energy efficient doors can really save on the utility bill. It is important that not only are the windows and doors efficient but that they are installed in such a way that air does not leak around the frames.
Energy star appliances use less electricity than other appliances. There are also very specialized appliances on the market which burn even less energy. A smaller home also uses less energy, as does a well insulated home. The HVAC system is especially crucial to energy efficiency. In order to pass the energy star examinations the HVAC system will be tested and must pass stringent requirements for energy consumption, and efficiency.
The use of solar panels to replace some or all of the electricity burned, and even create a surplus can eliminate your electric bill, or even get you a monthly check from the electric company.
Building your own home is the perfect opportunity to get optimal energy efficiency. A small home with an open floor plan heats and cools more efficiently than a large home with a lot of separate rooms. Windows and doors facing north should be kept to a minimum. Instead window walls should have a southern exposure for passive solar, and the overall percentage of wall space devoted to windows should be less than 25 percent.
It is much easier and less costly to build an energy efficient home than to make an existing home energy efficient. When built for energy efficiency your home will also be more durable than a home that was not built for energy efficiency. Extra wall thicknesses stand up better to wind, weather time and wear. Don’t waste the opportunity for lifelong savings. Energy efficient home building is a great way to save money long term and increase the value of your home in a practical way.