How to Buy an Energy-Efficient Home
By Cole Croft | March 2023
Buying a new home is an exciting process! However, it’s not all about finding your dream home and getting to decorate it; it can also be overwhelming at times. There are so many things you need to consider in order to make sure you’ve made the right choice. For example, you need to consider the energy efficiency of your new home. This could not only help you be more environmentally friendly but also help you save money on utility bills. That’s why, in this article, we’ll discuss everything you need to know in order to buy an energy-efficient home. Let’s get into it!
Why Buy an Energy-Efficient Home?
Before we dive into covering how to buy an energy-efficient home, let’s talk about why it’s important to do so. There are a few main reasons:
#1: Lower Energy Bills
One of the biggest advantages of buying an energy-efficient home for your family is lower energy bills. Since it’s made of better materials that don’t let heat escape, you’ll have to use your AC unit less. This means you’ll also pay less each month for energy use. Over time, these savings can add up significantly.
#2: Environmental Benefits
In the past few years, we’ve seen a huge rise in ecology groups and movements advocating for energy-efficient homes. By using less energy, you can lessen your carbon impact and contribute to environmental protection with global warming heating up our planet like never before and the amount of waste in oceans and land growing every day. Every single thing we do counts.
#3: Increased Comfort
A house that uses less energy is also more comfortable to live in. There are no longer any hot or chilly areas in the house, thanks to proper insulation and energy-efficient windows. While this isn’t our main priority, it’s certainly a good bonus. This is especially true for older people who might be more sensitive to things like this.
Energy-Efficient Features to Look For
After you’ve understood the advantages of buying an energy-efficient home, the next step is knowing what features to look for. Some most common energy-efficient features you should look for in a home include:
A home’s insulation must be effective for the home to be considered energy efficient. In the winter, it keeps the heated air inside, and in the summer, it keeps the cold air inside. This makes it much easier to keep a controlled temperature and avoid high utility bills.
To ensure your future home insulation is good, hire home inspectors. They’ll make sure the walls, loft, and cellar of the house you choose have adequate insulation that will keep your home at a comfortable temperature all year long.
The building elements used to build a house can also affect how energy-efficient it is. Be on the lookout for houses constructed from eco-friendly resources like bamboo, repurposed glass, and reclaimed timber. These materials may be more environmentally responsible and energy-efficient than conventional materials.
Home Size and Layout
A house’s size and design can also affect how energy-efficient it is. Smaller houses typically use less energy to heat and chill them, making them more energy-efficient. Open floor plans in homes can also let natural light move through the house, lowering the need for artificial illumination.
For example, while having a home office is a practical idea that could help you separate your work from your free time, it’s also much more energy-consuming to use AC in one additional room if you already don’t mind doing work from your living room. We’re not saying you have to live in a tiny home, but take into account the number of rooms you use and the impact their upkeep has on the environment.
It might seem tough to believe, but the location of a home can impact its energy efficiency. For example, you should look for homes with southern-facing windows to take advantage of natural light and solar heat. Moreover, you should consider the proximity to public transportation, schools, and shopping centers to reduce your carbon footprint.
Aside from the larger things we mentioned, you also need to consider the following:
- Energy-Efficient Windows – Homes lose a lot of energy through their windows. Look for houses with low-e finishes, gas fills, or double- or triple-paned windows. Aside from insulation, these features can also help reduce energy loss and save you money on energy bills.
- Energy-Efficient Appliances – Look for houses with ENERGY STAR-certified equipment. These appliances meet strict energy efficiency guidelines set by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.
- Water Efficiency – Look for homes with low-flow toilets, showerheads, and faucets, as well as efficient irrigation systems for outdoor water use.
Home Energy Audit
Consider having a home energy audit done before buying a home. An energy assessment of your house can show you where energy is being wasted and offer suggestions for improvements. Before making an offer, you can use this to find out if there are any possible energy-saving problems with the house.
Then, after you’ve purchased the home before you move in, make sure you make all the changes you need to make. The renovation will be much more challenging once you move in and bring all your stuff with you. However, if you take a few weeks to take care of all the house’s weak spots before hiring movers, you’ll be golden. Of course, you can also take care of the move by yourself, but experts can make the move easy and seamless, even if you’re moving all the way to Toronto from Montreal.
If you care about the environment and want to reduce your utility costs, you should definitely buy an energy-efficient home. Consider features like insulation, energy-efficient windows, appliances, and efficient heating and ventilation systems when searching for an energy-efficient house. A house energy assessment and other variables like location and home orientation should also be taken into account. By taking these steps, you can find an energy-efficient home that meets your needs and saves you money.
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Please contact Broker Donna Bulika for advice on purchasing real estate in Toronto and to book your private consultation by filling out the form below or calling/texting at 416-797-6226, or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org