Energy Efficient Ideas for Custom House, Savings From Energy Efficiency
There are three main priorities that we always urge our clients to seek when they are looking into renovating or remodeling their house. The first is that the project must improve your quality of life – whether that be an insulation upgrade that makes your home more comfortable or building a deck which gives you outdoor entertaining space. The second incentive on your renovation is to improve the market value of your home. It never hurts to recoup some of your investment at the time of sale. Improved market value pays you back on your renovation, but so does arguably the most important of the tiers of our renovation priorities – improving energy efficiency.
The Benefits of Improving Energy Efficiency
First off, the reason you renovate with energy efficiency in mind is to lower your utility bills. In fact, we recommend that renovating for energy efficiency in Ottawa is the first investment you make into your custom house. Once you've lowered your utility bills, you can use those savings to fund other renovations – essentially putting 'free' money into your home. When you improve the energy efficiency of your home, it has a positive trickle down effect on other areas. First off, an energy efficient home is more comfortable to live in. It doesn't have drafty spots and there isn't heated air seeping out gaps. An energy efficient home that is properly sealed also has better breathing air. Less dust and debris will be kicked up every time your HVAC system starts up. Finally, your HVAC system has to strain less because of improved energy efficiency. This makes it last longer and saves you on repair and maintenance fees.
Energy Efficient Home Improvements
The best thing about energy efficient ideas for a home in Ontario is that you can gradually integrate these steps or you can do a green overhaul all at once. Even seemingly minuscule ideas can have a positive effect on the efficiency of your home. Some examples of these projects include:
- Windows and Doors – modern energy efficient windows contain two or three panes of glass, each with insulating gas in the middle to prevent air loss. Not only that, they have protective glazing for further efficiency. Newer doors are also beefing up their insulation for improved savings.
- Programmable Thermostat – an absolute must in energy efficient custom homes in Ottawa. Controlling when and how your thermostat operates saves wear on your HVAC system. It can also help improve sleep quality by lowering the temperature a few degrees after your bedtime.
- Use Solar – your custom house should harvest the energy of the Sun as much as possible. Solar energy can be used to power lights, water heaters, and appliances, among others. Placing windows strategically will also help provide direct sunlight where you need it.
- Radiant Floor Heating – radiant heat warms up objects instead of the air and when used in your floor that warmth rises to encompass the entire room. Radiant heat produced by tubes of water running under the floor will cut down on gas use for a furnace.
- The Layout Itself – with a custom home you can maximize the design and layout for maximum energy efficiency. For example, North rooms have the least natural light so it's a good spot for bathrooms and utility rooms. Sunlight is the strongest on the South wall so use that to your advantage for sunlight gain in the Winter. Living rooms and kitchens benefit the most from this.
If you'd like assistance with green-focused design for a custom home or renovation in Ottawa give us a call today.