Green homes are appealing for their efficiency and low environmental impact, but while energy-saving improvements make a house more cost-effective to own, some can compromise a property’s appearance. Whether you are preparing a home for sale or looking for ways to save money and be kinder to Planet Earth, these three eco-friendly upgrades put more cash in your pocket without sacrificing valuable aesthetics.
Solar Panel Roofing Tiles
Solar Estimate explains that traditional solar panels look clunky and detract from the look of an otherwise high-end roof, but they also mean significant energy savings. If you live in an area where using sun power pays big, then consider installing solar panel roofing tiles instead. Also known as solar shingles, these small, low-profile units are made to look like asphalt tile, and once installed, they look like a conventional roof. Wires are hidden in the attic, and the effect is smooth and sleek.
The sole concern, for now, is the price. Solar shingles use thin-film technology that’s relatively new to the market, and their cost is higher than old-style panels. EnergySage explains, the good news is that shingles can cover more of a roof, offsetting the initial expense, and with an extension of the federal solar tax credit for 2019, now is an excellent time to consider an update.
Zero-scaping, better known as xeriscaping, is a landscape design philosophy that emphasizes the use of plants and other features that require no irrigation. By using choices that are well-adapted to the native climate, it offers two distinct benefits. Chileno Bay Resort & Residences explains that plants thrive with minimal care and look their best with less intervention, and zero-scaping helps minimize water usage. If you have a home for sale, then it makes landscaping both environmentally friendly and less expensive to maintain.
Proper insulation is key to controlling both heating and cooling bills, and as an investment, it has a low initial cost and virtually no impact on your home’s appearance. Start with extra layers in the attic and walls, and if your budget allows, consider replacing older windows with new, energy-efficient models.
Investing in your home’s energy efficiency pays off whether you plan to stay or are looking to sell, but you do not have to sacrifice its good looks to save money. Start with these three eco-friendly upgrades and watch the savings add up. Your checkbook and Mother Nature will thank you.