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September 24, 2018
Whether you’ve just built a brand new home or you recently purchased an existing home, move-in is a monumental time in your life. As a new homeowner, you’re probably beginning to think about the costs that will be involved in owning a home over the coming years. Those costs include not only your mortgage but also utility bills, HVAC equipment, plumbing expenses, aesthetic upgrades, and so much more.
Did you know that making a few home upgrades soon after you move into your home can set you up for lower homeownership costs and greater home comfort for years to come? That’s because certain home upgrades conserve energy, stabilize indoor temperatures, lower your utility bills, and extend the life of your HVAC equipment.
If you want to make your new home as comfortable as possible and minimize the costs associated with owning it for years to come, now’s the time to consider these simple home upgrades.
1. Schedule an Energy Audit
If there’s only one thing you’re going to do right after move-in, it’s this. Scheduling an energy audit soon after you’ve settled into your home will give you valuable information about your home’s overall performance — so you know which home upgrades to prioritize.
When you have Home Energy Medics conduct a comprehensive home energy audit on your home, for example, you’ll find out exactly where air leaks are, whether your insulation is up to par, how efficient your furnace and water heater are, and so much more. You’ll also receive a retrofit work proposal which lists out which energy efficiency and home comfort upgrades we recommend.
2. Update the Attic
Usually, the attic is one of the first areas in the home we recommend upgrading. This is because when the attic is leaky and under-insulated, heat has a tendency to rise and escape through the roof in the winter. Then in the summer, unwanted heat seeps in through the roof and into your living spaces.
Sealing air leaks and upgrading insulation in the attic area will make your home more energy efficient overall and minimize temperature fluctuations. You’ll run your heating and cooling equipment less often, feel more comfortable, and see lower energy bills from month to month.
3. Check the Basement
After the attic, the basement or crawlspace usually offers the next largest energy saving opportunity in the home. We typically recommend sealing air leaks with spray foam and upgrading the insulation in the basement area with high performance, waterproof insulation. This simple retrofit work will offer valuable benefits like fewer indoor drafts, warm floors in the winter, and greater overall indoor comfort.
4. Upgrade Your Windows
If your home still has older, single pane windows, you’re going to see major temperature fluctuations in both summer and winter. This is because single pane windows let valuable indoor heat escape in the winter and unwanted outdoor heat enter in the summer. Upgrading to energy efficient double pane windows and high performance entry doors will reduce heat transfer into and out of the home, giving you more consistent indoor comfort and lower utility bills.