When most homeowners think of home improvement, all they might see are flashing dollar signs; that’s because many home renovation improvement projects cost big money. What many people don’t realize however is that some home renovations and upgrades can actually save you a lot of money in the long run. Here the top five home upgrades and improvements that will eventually save you big bucks while preserving the value of your home.
A Low Flow Shower-head
When the winter chill seeps right into your bones, a long steamy shower might seem like the perfect solution to keep you warm. However, this could be wasting precious water and driving your utility bills through the roof.
The good news is you don’t have to forego that steamy shower; in fact, you can still enjoy it while reducing your cost by half. By installing a low-flow shower-head, you will be able to reduce both the amount of water and electricity used for each shower. There’re many inexpensive low-flow heads that you can buy and simply fix by yourself.
Clean Your Gutters and Look for Structural Problems
Water is one of the main causes of expensive home repairs. By fixing and stopping water leakage around your home, you can eliminate the need for repair and renovation. A few twigs and leaves in the gutter may not sound like a big deal, but gutters form your first line of defense against leaking roofs, water problems in your basement, cracked foundations, wood-destroying insects and fungus, rotten wood fascia and other serious problems.
The first thing you need to do is clear the gutter and install gutter guards to prevent water damage in future. This is also the best time to take a walk around your home looking for signs of foundation cracks, loose shingles, mildew or mold in the basement and other areas, and pest infestations.
Update Your High-Energy Appliances
Updating you home appliances to energy efficient versions can give you the highest return on your “home improvement” buck. Your primary target here should be the air conditioning, heating system, hot water heaters, refrigerators, and dehumidifiers.
You can easily adjust the energy usage by these appliances using measures such as installing a programmable thermostat. However, to get the bottom of the matter, you should consider replacing these appliances with energy saving versions.
Smart Lighting Home Improvement Upgrade
Smart lighting today comes in different forms and shapes, from compact fluorescent lamps, halogen incandescents and energy-efficient lightbulbs to automated lighting systems. Occupancy or motion sensors, for instance, will help you avoid leaving the lights on in dormant home sections and empty rooms; they often turn the lights on and off depending on movement.
Light automation saves on energy consumption by allowing you to preset lights and remotely control them. Replacing your bulbs with energy saving lightbulbs can also go a long way in cutting down your power consumption.
Air-seal your house
That includes installing weather-stripping windows and doors, and most importantly; sealing any penetrations in the attic floor such as chimneys, around pipes, wiring and light fixtures in the ceiling. Small cracks and gaps can significantly increase your cooling and heating costs without you noticing.
Bottom line As you can see, most of these “home improvement” upgrades and renovations are pretty simple and inexpensive. A majority of them are great DIY candidates so you don’t even have to worry much about labor cost. The best part is you don’t have to implement them all at once, which helps your budget and time.