Texas Cash Back Real Estate
Jill Aylwin - Real Estate Broker, Realtor, MBA
Ph: (281) 334-CASH
Investing in the Home: Energy Savings
Whether you are shopping for a new home or considering refinancing your current home loan, here are some energy saving measures to consider that may reduce your energy and water bills.
Are you thinking of upgrading your current home?
If you'd like to increase the energy efficiency of the home you're living in, an energy audit or home energy rating report might make sense. Want to audit your own home? Check with your utility company, as many offer self-audit packets. You answer the questions and send the information back to the utility company, which, in turn, provides you with feedback based on the information you've provided.
Are you planning on building a home?
If you're planning to build, ask an energy expert for help to see if the home design is as energy efficient as possible. Trained utility company employees sometimes conduct energy audits for free or at a small cost. There also are home inspectors, energy raters, and private consultants who can help.
Are you planning on buying an existing home?
If you're planning to buy an existing home, a close look at the home's past utility bills may be a sign of things to come for your utility costs. Ask the sellers if you can review their utility bills over the last 12 months. In some instances, you may be able to obtain this information directly from the utility company by providing the street address to the utility company. Keep in mind, however, that high past utility bills may not be due entirely to the home itself. Family size and lifestyle also affect utility bills. As mentioned above, you may find it helpful to have an energy audit performed. With the results, you'll know the energy efficiency of the home in its current state and learn about the most cost-effective improvements you can make to upgrade the home.
Here are some energy efficiency measures to consider whether you are purchasing a new home or refinancing your current home loan:
How efficient are the heating and cooling systems?
Are there any water leaks?
What are the usage patterns based on past utility bills?
How is the insulation in the walls, ceilings, attic, floors, and crawl spaces?
Are there holes or cracks around the walls, ceilings, windows, doors, light and plumbing fixtures, switches or electrical outlets? Weather strip and caulk wherever needed as these can be the source of energy loss.
Are the appliances and equipment energy-efficient?
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