Reducing your property’s environmental impact comes with multiple benefits. For one, it typically means lower operating costs. By increasing your home’s efficiency, you reduce the amount of energy it requires — as well as the monthly bills that energy comes with.
At a deeper level, you can also lessen the ill effects your household has on the world. That means lower emissions, less energy consumption, and a smaller carbon footprint all around.
Fortunately, achieving both these feats isn’t too difficult — nor expensive, in many cases. Here are seven easy ways to reduce your home’s environmental impact and save cash in the process:
1. Install a smart thermostat.
Smart thermostats — like the Nest and the Ecobee — are great ways to reduce your home’s environmental impact. These high-tech devices automate your home’s heating and cooling schedule, adapting it to your unique needs as a household. Some can even adjust depending on time-of-use energy prices and local demand, too.
They’re also big money-savers. Ecobee is reported to save homeowners 23% on their annual HVAC costs, while the Nest saves anywhere from 10% to 15%.
2. Opt for Energy Star appliances.
Appliances with the Energy Star logo are proven to meet certain standards for energy efficiency. A nice bonus? They can save you money on operating costs and, in many cases, qualify you for valuable rebates and tax credits as well.
You can find Energy Star models of virtually every appliance and home system out there, including washers, dryers, refrigerators, furnaces, and more. There are even ceiling fans and light bulbs that qualify. See Energy.gov for a full list of products you can choose from.
3. Increase shade.
Planting trees and increasing the shade around your house can also help. Not only will it keep your home cooler in the summer, but it will also cut down on your energy needs in the hotter parts of the year. Adding tinting to your windows can also have similar benefits.
4. Install solar panels and solar-powered systems.
Depending on your home’s placement, solar panel systems could be a good option to reduce energy use and your monthly electricity bills. You can use a tool like Project Sunroof to get an estimate of how much carbon dioxide the switch could eliminate at your household, as well as the money it’d save you and the average costs you can expect for the project.
If you’re looking for a smaller change, you can also look into solar-powered ventilation fans and solar water heaters.
5. Low-flow toilets and showers
Low-flow toilets, showers, and other systems use significantly less water than traditional models. In fact, many low-flow toilets use as little as 1.6 gallons per flush (five times less than a typical toilet). This means that adding just one low-flow toilet can make a big dent in your household water consumption. But adding them throughout your home? That can have serious impacts — both on your water usage and your utility bills.
6. Use LED lights
Swapping your lightbulbs for LED versions is another incredibly affordable way to make a difference. LED bulbs use anywhere from 25% to 80% less energy than traditional incandescent bulbs, and they also last three to 25 times longer, too. The result is a better investment, a reduced impact on the environment, and less spent on energy, too.
The bottom line
There are lots of ways to lessen the impact your home has on the world around it. And many of them? They’ll save you cash, too. Need help financing some of these upgrades? Get in touch with Premier Nationwide Lending today. We’ll walk you through your options.
Premier Nationwide Lending is an Equal Housing Opportunity lender. Sponsored by NTFN, Inc. 6201 West Plano Parkway, Suite 100, Plano, TX 75093 | NTFN NMLS 75333.