Energy efficiency is one of the solutions seen to minimize the effects of climate change. For this reason, governments and organizations are offering a variety of incentive programs. These incentives are targeted toward residential homeowners. It covers options for new homeowners and homeowners who have existing properties that need to be energy-efficient renovated. The goal of these incentives is to make energy-efficient solutions more accessible and affordable for homeowners.
Kinds of Incentive Programs
Incentives vary from one program to another. And these usually differ per state. Some of the most common incentive programs include:
- Tax incentives
- Loan approvals for energy-efficient purposes
- Discounts and savings
Incentive programs are usually offered for purchases of water heaters, lighting, building insulation, and HVAC systems. To know more about these incentives, it’s best to research the policies in your locality.
How to Make Your Home More Energy Efficient
The design and building materials used in a home contribute to an efficient insulation system. A home’s architecture can be designed in a unique way so that it makes rational use of natural light and its surroundings.
The building materials play into factor as well. There are specific materials that promote an eco-friendly and energy-efficient solution.
Unika Stenhus is one such example. This unique home is simple, practical, and energy efficient. Ola Torrång, head architect at Unika Stenhus, has designed this home with a mind for sustainability and flexibility.
Its building materials are made of lightweight high-insulation concrete elements that can store excess heat during the winter, while its heavy frame keeps the cool air inside the house during hot summer days.
Unika Stenhus’ design is revolutionary in that it requires very minimal maintenance and it is not prone to fires, molds, moisture, and any common damage most houses are prone to.
This Nordic home’s features are unique. It has a skylight dome that reflects natural light inside the home to keep it well-lit. The dome can also be opened during the summer for better insulation. In addition, it has corner windows that are designed strategically to filter light into the rooms. A clever use of natural lighting to minimize energy consumption. In addition to these, Unika Stenhus is flexible as rooms can be upsized or downsized conveniently as per the homeowner’s needs.
Home electronics and appliances, lighting
Another major factor that helps energy efficiency is the use of smart electronics and appliances. To boot, changing your home’s lighting to LED lights is highly advised.
It also helps to reduce the amount of time you use these appliances to save even more energy. For older homes that are still using incandescent bulbs, changing these into LED lighting can effectively slash up to 15% off your electricity bills. To maximize energy savings, choose LED bulbs with the ENERGY STAR seal of approval.
Another crucial step to energy efficiency is to save on water consumption. And this is where ENERGY STAR-approved appliances also come into use. Go for washing machines and dishwashers that use less water. Install dual flush toilets if you’re still the old-school ones. Practice smart gardening.
For a full list of local incentives and tax credits and rebates, you can check out the websites of the Department of Energy and the Database of State Incentives for Renewables & Efficiency. Both of these sites provide detailed information on policies for improvements in energy efficiency and other pertinent information.
Both new homes and home renovations can benefit from a lot of energy-efficient solutions mentioned above. Choose quick solutions that can be implemented right away to get started. Then, inquire with your locality about the incentives available for you as a homeowner to defer your expenses in energy proofing your home.