If you are considering selling your home, you’ll want to consider all the possible ways to make sure your home stands out from the rest. Repairing damage or items that need maintenance is important, as well as staging your home and paying attention to curb appeal.
Appealing to today’s home buyers should be a part of your plan. As home products as well as homes themselves are becoming increasingly more energy efficient, home buyers have increased their expectations. Have you considered a Home Energy Audit?
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Should I Get A Home Energy Audit Before Selling My Home?
In a day where home buyers are concerned about the impact of energy consumption on the environment as well as on their wallets, getting a home energy audit is a great first step in finding ways to increase your home’s energy efficiency.
The average household will spend 5% and 22% of their income on energy consumption, according to WalletHub. A home energy audit will show you how you can save money on your energy bill by pointing out the areas in your home that are lacking efficiency and wasting energy.
The cost of a professional energy audit is somewhere between $300 and $600, depending on your location and the depth of the service. You can get a reference from the Alliance to Save Energy, or you can contact your electric company. If you can save 25% a year in energy costs, it’s well worth the money to have an audit.
If you make the changes to your home to save energy, you’ll also find it worth the effort and money when your home stands out among the other homes on the market.
You can also do your own DIY Home Energy Audit. For about $100 to $200 you can purchase a home power monitor and connect it to your circuit breaker. The monitor records and calculates the cost of electricity. Another alternative is a kilowatt meter, ranging from $30 to $200, which measures the energy use of any device plugged into it.
Small Changes in Energy Efficiency Add Up
Smart home and green home technologies are catching on. With each innovation, the cost of these products keeps coming down, making many of these technologies affordable. This will only increase the ROI of energy efficient home products.
If you’re considering home improvement, homework on green home building trends will be worth your time, as green home building techniques are on the rise. There are tax credits still in place for energy-efficient features in new home construction.
While many tax credits for upgrades and renovations have expired, there are still tax credits for fuel cells, small wind turbines, and geothermal heat pumps .
There are over 70 categories of Energy-Star certified appliances that will save you as much as 30% on your energy bills. Be sure to check with their websites, as well as your electric company website.
Whether you decide to have a home energy audit or not, there are many things you can do to curb your home’s energy consumption.
- A smart strip eliminates “vampire” energy your devices use when they are switched off. About $30, a smart strip plugs into the wall and works as a surge protector, but also cuts the power to devices when they are shut off.
- Insulation around doors and windows can become worn and have gaps. Check them periodically and repair with caulk or replace.
- Wrap pipes and water heaters with foam wrapping. Water heaters and exposed are usually in basements, where the air is cooler, so they have to work harder to maintain their high temperatures. Insulation around them will help them work less.
- A programmable thermostat will regulate your use of air conditioning in summer and heating in winter.
- You can save about 10% a year on energy bills by lowering your thermostat by 10% for a minimum of 8 hours a day.
- Replace incandescent light bulbs with fluorescent or LED bulbs.
- Install low-flow faucets with an aerator. Install low-flow toilets.
- Dust off the coils under your refrigerator regularly to keep it from working so hard to stay cool.
- Put thicker curtains around windows in summer to keep out the sun.
- For more tips, visit http://www.energy.gov/
Market Your Home’s Energy Efficiency
If you are planning to put your home on the market, doing a home energy audit can help you make improvements that today’s buyers are looking for. According to several studies, like this from the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB), the “most wanted” items on the home buyer’s wish list are in two themes: energy efficiency and organization/storage in their homes. If you have energy efficient features in your home, be sure to use those features in your marketing.
When marketing your home to buyers, be sure to publish your energy audit findings and any improvements you’ve made to your home. Also, you can proudly display your electric, gas, or water bills to prospective buyers. Don’t be surprised when a savvy buyer chooses your home over comparable homes because they like the savings in energy they’ll have in your home.
Where to Get An Energy Audit in Central Maryland
There are several companies that will do an energy audit for homeowners in central Maryland:
- Comfortable Home Energy Audits, 4984 Tall Oaks Dr. Monrovia, MD 21770, 202-715-9333
- Home Energy Savings Solutions, 5018 Canvasback Ct. Frederick, MD 21703, 240-422-8640
- Home Energy Savings Solutions, 5208 Ernie Lane, Frederick, MD 21703, 240-422-8640
- Atlas Home Energy Solutions, 5711 Industry Lane, Ste. 23, Frederick, MD 21704, 240-575-9104
- Home Energy Savings Solutions, 5268 Nicholson Lane, Ste. 167, Rockville, MD 20852, 301-842-8818
- Home Energy Rescue, 20506 Bordly Ct. Brookeville, MD 20833, 301-570-3626
- Energy Homes Nexus, 620 N. Bentz St. Frederick, MD 21701
- Exterior Concepts Tri-State Energy Inc. 11701 Winterset Ter., Potomac, MD 20854, 3010424-1122
- Mesco Metropolitan Energy Savers Co. BBB Rating A+, 7905 Brethren Dr. Gaithersburg, MD 20879, 301-921-0708