5 Energy-Efficient Upgrades with a High ROI
Every expense for the home is an investment. Homeowners who want to get a good return on that investment often compare what they will spend to what they are likely to get in use or resale value. Upgrades for energy efficiency are popular because they decrease energy consumption, make the home feel more comfortable, and help the property maintain relevance to future buyers. The following improvements in particular have a reputation for the highest ROI.
Installing solar panels can be an excellent way to cut energy costs by providing a renewable source of energy for use in the home. Solar panels are usually installed on the roof of the home or other outbuildings. They may connect to battery systems that allows excess energy to be stored for later use. This project is a larger investment, but has a growing ROI due to buyer demand. Experts estimate that installing solar panels increases resale value by 4 to 10 percent. Homeowners may also want to look for local, state, or federal rebates on the installation of solar panels. These might help to cut the cost of the initial investment.
Heating and Cooling
For most homeowners, the vast majority of energy usage in the home relates to heating and cooling. As such, one of the easiest ways to reduce energy consumption without compromising comfort in the home involves the machines that condition the indoor air:
- Heat pumps
- Air conditioners
Appliances with the EnergyStar rating tend to cost more, but they run more efficiently. Therefore, many home buyers prefer to choose homes with EnergyStar appliances. It is difficult to put an ROI on appliance purchases in relation to resale value, but these options make the home more competitive.
In some cases, the investment does not need to be large to make a positive difference in resale value. Most homes could benefit from the installation or addition of attic insulation, which helps minimize heat transfer. Apart from the purchase of efficient heating and cooling appliances, adding insulation is one of the best ways to increase home energy efficiency. Homeowners may notice that their energy bills are lower once the project is complete, and they can also expect a boost in their overall resale value similar to what they paid for the insulation itself.
Windows and Doors
Installing new windows and doors can raise resale value for reasons other than increasing energy efficiency. Old windows and doors make a home seem older than it is. They are also more likely to have gaps around the casing, which creates air leaks that decrease heating and cooling efficiency. Replacing them gives the home a fresh face, which improves curb appeal. Certain types of new windows even cut down on non-solar heat gain. As a result of these benefits, the ROI on new windows and doors is about 70 percent of the cost of installation.
Lighting may be an excellent way for homeowners on a budget to lower their energy consumption. New lighting can be as simple and inexpensive as replacing old incandescent or compact fluorescent bulbs with LEDs. Compared to incandescent lighting, LED bulbs use a tiny fraction of the energy for the same output in lumens. For people who are looking for a higher return on investment, installing a smart lighting system may be a logical next step. Existing homes with smart home technology have an easier time competing with new construction, which often offers these tools by default. Built-in systems with the ability to upgrade are more likely to maintain relevance after a few years.
Focusing on ROI is a practical choice for homeowners, particularly when making energy-efficient home improvements. By trying these options, people save money and may also increase their resale value.