When building a new home, incorporating energy efficient features will reduce your bills, leaving you extra money to pay off that mortgage faster, or enjoy a cheeky little splurge.
Working with the climate and surrounding environment by employing clever design ideas will not only make your home cheaper to heat and cool, it will also make it more comfortable.
If you can save energy in your home during every season, you’re winning, and it is possible. The best time to start is in winter. While it might be tempting to rely on your heater, this isn’t always ideal for our wondrous Mother Earth or the figures on your energy bill at the end of the winter season.
When building or designing your new home, it’s important to keep energy-saving principles in mind. Above all, a north-facing position will allow your home to maximise the amount of warm sunlight that enters your home and provides warmth naturally. It can be as little as half the amount with east and west facing windows.
After all, there’s nothing worse than retreating to your home only to be greeted with the harsh cold. Here are three small home investments that are guaranteed to go a long way in your climate control challenges.
1. Sealing gaps and cracks
One aspect that is commonly overlooked when trying to retain heat in your home is preventing air leakage. With air leakage accounting for up to 25% of winter heat loss from buildings, it makes perfect sense to get your home air sealed!
Simply put, air leaks can be present throughout any home and are not always immediately obvious to us. Common areas where leaks can be occurring include fireplace dampers, pipes, vents, poorly fitted or shrunken floorboards and exhaust fans.
While caulk is best used for filling cracks, gaps and joints, weatherstripping is recommended for movable building components like doors and windows.
On top of the climate control advantages, these measures will also reduce the risk of water damage and pest infestations.
2. Insulating your home
Insulating your home is one of the most cost-effective ways to keep your home warm in the winter and cool in the summer.
Insulation acts as a physical barrier to keep your home warm in winter and cool in summer. It’s a good idea to maximise the effectiveness of your insulation, think about upgrading your insulation from the standard offered by the builder when building a new home.
Best practice insulation will stabilise the temperature in your home as the insulation acts a barrier to heat flow, either keeping the heat inside your home in winter or stopping the outside heat from entering your home in summer. With your ceilings, walls and floors well insulated, you’ll be set all year round and can effectively reduce your heating bills by half. That means some big dollar savings for you and your family which is worth celebrating.
3. Installing solar panels
Last but not least, every home ought to have solar panels. Take a look around as you drive through the suburbs, and you’ll notice solar panels catching the sun on the roofs of a huge percentage of Aussie suburban homes.
Trends fade, but this one is here to stay because there’s nothing faddish about the benefits on offer here. More than one in five Australian households have solar panels installed, and for good reason. As a long-term investment, you have nothing to lose and plenty to gain, including mountains and mountains of savings.
As a renewable resource, solar energy is both great for the environment and for your wallet. The best part? The electricity it generates is absolutely free!
Apart from reducing your home’s carbon footprint, the simple act of having solar panels adds incredible value to your home. And don’t forget - north-facing solar panels are best!
And with that, we come to the end of some more helpful guidance from us, to you. We hope this helps give you some knowledge and extra ideas that will help keep you family happier and more comfortable in your home, all year round.