As a real estate professional, I can remember the time when at the top of a homeowner’s wish list were things like a master bedroom suite or a gourmet kitchen, but times have changed, and so has the buyers wish list.
While buyers still have these wonderful amenities on the list, they are asking for energy-saving options as their must have items on their list.
Here is a list of options that are affordable and provide immediate savings. Some of these items are: 2×6 walls, house wrap, energy-efficient windows and energy-efficient appliances.
Make sure the walls of the home are framed with 2×6 lumber. Using 2×6 lumber for framing allows extra room for more insulation, which will keep the home warmer in the winter and cooler in the summer.
It is installed right after framing, and it literally “wraps” the entire house to create a thermal barrier that keeps the house warm in the winter and cool in the summer. The wrap also acts as a vapor barrier between exterior materials and the framing lumber.
More home buyers today love windows, as they bring in more natural light, open up rooms and provide a connection to the outside. But there is thermal transfer with windows. A quality builder will know how to balance the homeowner’s desire for “walls of windows” while still meeting the new more stringent code requirements.
Appliances account for for a sizeable percentage of electric usage in a home, especially the refrigerator, dishwasher and clothes dryer. Buyers should make sure to use ENERGY STAR rated appliances or an equivalent.
Attic Fan: an attic fan greatly reduces the amount of work for an air conditioner by getting rid of the heat generated from roof absorption.
Energy-efficient hot water heater:
Almost 20 percent of energy use in a household can be attributed to a hot water heater, and the more family members in the house, the more you use. A quick recovery gas hot water heater tends to be more energy-efficient than electric models. Buyers also should consider an-on-demand gas unit where you pay to heat the water as it is used.
This energy-savings list should be part of any conversation you have with your real estate professional, especially for new construction. Your goal should be to build a high quality, energy-efficient home at an affordable price that is with-in your budget.
For more information on energy-efficient ideas when building a new home, be sure to contact a Real Estate Professional before meeting with the builder.