Sisal and black doormat says WELCOME

Not only will quality home improvements make your home a more enjoyable place to live, but they can also improve home value and provide additional benefits. This year, when you are looking to invest in your property, you should consider making eco-friendly home improvements. These improvements can help you to reduce your energy bills, make your home more sustainable, and overall be better for the environment. Additionally, these improvements are often in demand with homebuyers, which means they can add value to your property as well. There are a variety of green home improvement upgrades you should consider making this year.

Go Solar

When you are looking to make improvements to your home, one great option to consider would be to have solar panels installed. When you have solar panels installed, you can generate your own electricity through solar energy. Today, solar options are particularly ideal in locations that get a lot of sun. When you have solar panels placed on your roof, you can even generate enough electricity to completely reduce your need to borrow from the local power companies. In some locations, you can generate more electricity than you need, which could allow you to sell electricity back to the power company. This can help to make solar panels one of the best investments that you can make for your home.

Energy Efficient Appliances

Another improvement that you should make for your home would be the installation of energy-efficient appliances. Purchasing new appliances is something that people generally have to do every ten to fifteen years. When you are looking for a new refrigerator, oven, dishwasher, washer and dryer set, or other appliance, you should consider getting one that is energy-efficient. While these appliances may come with a higher price tag initially, you will make up the cost difference through lower energy bills. Further, these appliances often come with the ability to get further rebates.

Smart Thermostat

When you are looking to make an energy-efficient improvement to your home this year, consider having a smart thermostat installed. One of the biggest ways that people waste their money and energy is by not having the correct temperature set in their homes at all times. When people go away to work for the day or are away from home, it can be very easy to not have their home climate regulated. This can result in higher energy bills all year long. When you have a smart thermostat installed, you have far more control at all times. With a smart thermostat, you program temperature controls ahead of time. Additionally, you will use your mobile devices to control the temperature when you are away from home. This can help you to keep your home comfortable while you are home while not spending too much on heating and cooling when you are away.

Energy-Efficient Doors and Windows

While there are plenty of benefits that come with having energy efficient appliances installed, one of the best ways to control your energy usage would be by having energy-efficient doors and windows installed. Today, energy-rated doors and windows do an amazing job of keeping your home at the ideal temperature. These double-paned windows and energy-efficient doors are also very nice looking and can drastically improve your curb appeal. These are also some of the most highly sought after home improvements by buyers. Having these assets installed could help to improve the value of your property. Additionally, there are many federal, state, and local tax rebates available to buyers of energy efficient upgrades, which could save you thousands.

Natural Wood Alternative Improvements

Having nice wood flooring or wood moldings put into your home is a nice improvement for any property. When you have these wood improvements installed, it is important that you choose a more sustainable option. While deforestation is a major concern for certain types of wood, there are alternatives that look amazing and are far more Earth-friendly. For example, bamboo, used for flooring, is one of the most renewable woods. While a normal tree will take decades to grow back, bamboo takes only a few years. Additionally, bamboo can come in a wide variety of different colors and is very durable, making it ideal for many homes. Other wood alternatives to consider include Brazilian Cherry, or White Tigerwood. Not only do all of these flooring and molding options look good, they are also strong selling points with buyers if you are looking to sell soon.

Change the Paint

One of the most common home improvements that someone will make is when they put a fresh coat of paint in a room. Adding new paint can help to transform any room in your home and make it feel fresh and clean. When you are looking to paint in your home, you should consider using a paint product that is low in volatile organic compounds (VOC). This compound is well known for contributing to overall air pollution and smog. Do your part and make sure that you are buying paint that is low in VOC. Most home improvement and paint stores offer a wide variety of low-VOC options. Additionally, low VOC paint tends to have less of a smell and is easier to clean up if some is spilled.

Ceiling Fans

During the hot summer months, one of the biggest expenses that people incur is a higher electricity and energy bill. The main reason why this happens is that certain areas of the home have poor ventilation and air flow. A much better option would be to have ceiling fans installed. A ceiling fan does a great job of circulating the air and adding some great flow to the property. This can help to make any room feel cooler and fresher. As an added benefit, you can purchase ceiling fans that are Energy-Star rated. These ceiling fans are even more efficient than traditional ceiling fans, which can additionally help to reduce your overall bills.

Smart Lights and Plugs

While smart thermostats are very popular options for people that are looking to be more energy-efficient, you should also consider other smart upgrades. One of the best smart upgrades for your home would be smart light bulbs, plugs, and other accessories installed into your property. When you have these smart accessories installed, you have more control over your energy usage. You have the ability to turn lights on and off by using your home automation system or mobile device. This means you control whether or not a light is turned on or off no matter where you are. This can help to reduce the amount of wasted electricity.

Replace Light Bulbs

If you do not already have energy-efficient light bulbs in your home, look for ways to switch them out over the next year. Energy-efficient light bulbs cost a bit more money upfront, but they can last for well over a year without the need for replacement. Furthermore, these bulbs are more efficient than other light lighting options, helping to reduce your total energy costs on a monthly basis. Today, there are energy-efficient light bulb options in a wide variety of shades and sizes.

Home Garden

Another fun way that you can make your home more green in the coming year is by creating and managing your own home garden. Gardening at your home is a great way to get exercise and spend some time out in the sun. It is also a great way to make your home greener and reduce your carbon footprint. When you grow your own produce or flowers in your home garden, you will know for a fact that they are organic and grown without any pesticides. Additionally, you will not have to spend time and gas money going to the store as often. While it can take a few years to get your home garden fully established, doing this will eventually save some money on groceries as well.

When you are looking to improve your home, making eco-friendly upgrades can be a great idea. These improvements add value to your home, reduce energy usage and bills, and provide a variety of other benefits as well. When you are looking to make any form of green improvement to your home, consider your options to figure out which choice is right for you and your property.

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About The Author

Mikkie Mills's picture

Mikkie Mills is a freelance writer who's passionate about health, fitness, organic cooking and eating, and yoga. When not writing she loves traveling, hiking, and cooking. Find more from Mikkie on Google+.

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