Go Green–Affordably!

If you’re selling your home, or thinking about doing so, you should know that most buyers these days are looking for energy efficiency.  New homes are being built with more energy-efficient materials and appliances, but older homes may not have some of the features that help lower utility costs.  Installing some of these features can make your home more attractive to potential buyers and save you money too!  Here are some easy things you can do to increase your home’s appeal in today’s competitive market.

Replace regular light bulbs in light fixtures with CFLs (compact fluorescent light bulbs).  They use about 1/5 the energy of regular bulbs and last about 12x longer!

Install low-flow showerheads that will save on water heating and use.

Install an ENERGY STAR qualified programmable thermostat.  This helps you regulate heating and cooling so your units don’t have to work so hard when no one’s at home.

Insulate your hot water tank.

Close the damper on the fireplace.  People forget this during the summer, and it will help prevent energy loss.

Repair water leaks.  Not only do these small leaks waste water, they also make a buyer think the home has not been well-maintained.  A big turn-off!

Add insulation to an attic.

Seal ducts.  Did you know that 20% of the air moving through your ducts can be lost due to leaks, holes, and poor connections?  Do you really want to heat and air condition your attic???

These are all simple things you can likely do yourself to save energy and lower those utility costs!

You can also contact CPS Energy in San Antonio (or your local utility if you’re not in San Antonio) to conduct an energy audit of your home.  Here in San Antonio, go to www.cpsenergysavers.com and check out all the ideas there.  You can do a self-audit and get $5 off your next CPS Energy bill!  I did that and I have someone coming to my home next week to do an energy audit!  CPS has a number of rebates available for installing more energy efficient appliances, windows, etc.  so check that out while you’re on the site too!

There are lots more small changes we can all make to help lower utility costs and reduce our energy use.  Hope these will get you started!