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  • Green Home

    Energy-Efficient Homes: What You Need to Know



February 2018


One of the best times to consider an energy efficient home is when you are buying, building, or modernising. Learn how to identify the features of a green home and why you should consider them.

Buying or building a house is exciting, but it may also come with its stresses and complications. There are many decisions to be made. These include design, insulation, heating, cooling, and appliances such as energy-efficient washing machines, dryers, and hot water systems. These decisions may improve your level of comfort, as well as decrease your electricity bill.

Of course, it is best to consult with professionals to get the best advice when it comes to energy-efficient house features. The following article contains points to consider when buying or building a green home.

What is an energy efficient home?

An energy efficient home reduces wasted energy usage, greenhouse gas emissions, and its demand for non-renewable energy resources. It may also offer healthier, cleaner living conditions. A financial saving may also occur in an energy efficient home.

Why invest in an energy efficient house?

Investing in sustainable and renewable energy systems for your home may be a large initial financial outlay. But, there are many reasons to consider it. Not only will your home’s value likely increase with these installations, you may lower your electricity bill and carbon footprint.

How to make a house energy efficient

If you choose to build or renovate your home, lots of building materials and resources may be needed. The building products that you select could affect the build quality and comfort level of your house. These materials may also impact maintenance costs in the future.

By choosing durable, long-lasting materials, you can make your home both comfortable and efficient. Some of these products include:

Insulation

Insulation creates an important barrier between the outside and inside of your house. In summer, it keeps the heat out, and in winter, it keeps the heat in. If you insulate your home properly, you may be comfortable all year round. Insulation may also cut your cooling and heat expenditure by as much as 50%. 1

Timber

Timber is a popular choice for windows and flooring. There are many plantation timbers and composites made from recycled plastic and sawdust available. Be sure to seal your timber floors properly after insulating.

Solar panels

Solar power is created using the energy from the sun. Solar panels convert light into power which can be used for appliances in your home. Although the initial cost of solar systems is quite high, they may save you a great deal of money in the future. Solar energy is estimated to have reduced Australia’s energy use by up to 40%2 in average homes.

Paint

The colour of paint used in your home can have an impact on the heat levels in a room. By using light-coloured paints inside your home, you improve the levels of light in your house. This reduces the need to use lights during the day.

Windows and Doors

Windows can be the cause of up to a 40%3 loss of cooling or heating energy. This can be reduced by up to 80%4 if energy efficient windows are installed. Double glazed windows may be the best solution for your home, particularly if you plan on having larger window panes. Ensure that your windows close to be airtight. Putting up curtains, blinds, awnings, and shutters may also serve to reduce your energy use.

The final word

When looking at buying a house, check for things like solar panels, double glazed windows, and insulation. While it may not seem important now, these products may save you money and energy in the future.

If you are building your own home, these items are worthwhile installing from the start. Efficient energy systems may also mean that you have a healthier living space.


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