Going green isn’t just a way to address the climate crisis — it can also be a sound investment. The right eco-friendly projects not only make your home look and feel better, they save you money and up your return if you decide to sell.
Sure, you’ll have to spend a little now, but these energy-saving upgrades are worth it. They benefit the planet, help your home work more efficiently, and make big bills like heating, cooling, and water so much smaller.
So, go green (and save some green) by adding these sustainable projects to your to-do list:
Green Your Roof
Consider investing in a metal one. These highly durable roofs are Energy Star-certified to help you control heating and cooling costs throughout the year. The interlocking metal is also wind-resistant, so you don’t have to worry about drafts. Plus, they come with a lifetime warranty and the company claims you net 65 percent return on investment if you ever decide to put your home on the market.
Upgrade Your Windows
Much like a new roof, replacement windows can do wonders for your home’s aesthetic. Even better, installing Energy Star-certified windows can make your home more weather-tight. Wind and cool air will be no match for the weather stripping, plus the rooms in the house may better retain heat or air conditioning. While this is another costly project, you may get as much as 68 percent of that back if you sell.
Get a Tankless Water Heater
Though they’re more expensive than traditional water heaters, these systems are 24 to 34 percent more energy efficient, according to the U.S. Department of Energy. That’s because an electric component or gas burner warms the water as it travels through a pipe and into the unit, resulting in a constant supply of hot water which requires less overall heating.
Switch to Smart Thermostats
Swap out old thermostats for modern smart models. They’re affordable (you can get a good one for less than $100), plus they’re relatively easy to install without a pro. You can program the unit — at its base or via your smartphone — to turn the heat or air conditioning on and off at various times throughout the day in different zones of your house. Some of the pricier models will even learn your behaviors and adjust automatically.
Unveil a New Front Door
A new front door can also help you save on heating and cooling costs — particularly if you opt for an Energy Star-certified steel model. They’re incredibly durable and fit snugly in their frame, making it harder for air to escape in or out. Also nice: an attractive new door instantly boosts your curb appeal according to experts and may aid in hitting your asking price, and isn’t that what this is all about? Oh, yes, and saving the planet too.