Have you been thinking about making your house GREENER?
I just finished a class on Sustainable Housing and Building Green and learned what it means for you to own a Energy Star house. It pretty much comes down to how well the house is sealed.
The normal buyer thinks that windows and doors are the only items that need to be sealed in order to keep the utility bills low. Energy Star builders make sure that all of the seals around the air vents, attic areas that are adjacent to the house, attic access points and baseboards are properly insulated and sealed. They bring in a separate inspector to pressurize the house to make sure that the house is sealed well enough to qualify under Energy Star's standards.
What can you do to live GREENER?
Here is what everybody heard for the last decade..."change your air filters, don't use the lights and preserve water!!!!!" We have heard this so much that it has been drilled into our brains.
Lets talk about making our houses so energy efficient that they are eventually self sustainable. (Wouldn't it be nice if the electric company paid you monthly for the excess energy your house produces)...learn more about self sufficient houses here.
Most of the energy that your house uses is coming from your HVAC system (over 60%). If you have a system that is more than 10 years old then you probably should get a new one. The newer heat pumps and furnaces are much more energy efficient.
New houses are more efficient because they are using sprayed insulation in the walls, the duct work is better/tighter and the appliances are more efficient.
Investing in new windows can help make it easier to hold a set temperature in your house. This will keep your bills much lower.
Energy efficient washer and dryers are becoming very popular as well as tank-less water heaters.
As an agent it is easier for me to see the changes that are taking place. People are GOING GREEN and this will become an important factor to the normal buyer.