Is your home feeling a little too cold, drafty, or outdated? Or are you looking for ways to cut down on energy costs? What if you could have both? A comfortable and energy-efficient living space? Unfortunately, many homeowners think they must choose between one and comprise on the other. Therefore, they refrain from making changes to their home and continue living in a space far from being cozy, and end up with higher energy costs than necessary. They don’t even feel at ease in their homes – not to mention the emotional stress and anxiety it can bring.
Your home’s comfort sets the foundation for a better lifestyle. Not only it improves your mood and well-being, but it also reduces stress. On the other hand, making an energy-efficient and comfortable living space also comes with economic benefits. If you reside in a state with higher electricity costs, such as Michigan, it’s your best chance to save hundreds of dollars annually by making your home more energy-efficient. After all, Michiganians pay 19.5% more on electricity bills than the national average.
Let’s take a look at some tips that can help you maximize your comfort while reducing energy costs:
1. Install Energy-Efficient Windows
Those who think windows don’t have much to do with energy efficiency should think twice. Windows are one of the primary reasons for energy loss at home.
Fortunately, energy-efficient windows are available to make your home more comfortable and efficient. They are designed with thermal-resistant frames and special coatings that prevent heat loss during the winter and keep the wind out during summer. Some models yield 7-15% annual savings on household energy bills. Learn how energy efficient windows benefits your home and hire a reliable window replacement company to install them today.
2. Choose the Right Furniture
Imagine a cozy living room with soft, comfortable furniture for you and your family to relax after a long day. How about a bed with just the right balance of firmness and cushioning? The right furniture can make all the difference in achieving optimal comfort levels at home.
When choosing furnishings, always go for quality over quantity or price. Choose quality materials that will last you for years and stand the test of time. Also, pay attention to details such as texture, colors, and patterns to ensure your furniture is comfortable – physically and visually.
Regular dusting, vacuuming, and cleaning will help keep your furniture looking and feeling its best.
3. Upgrade Your HVAC System
Heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) systems account for up to 50% of a home’s energy costs. So, if yours is wearing out, it’s time to replace it with an Energy Star-certified system. These advanced systems use 15% less energy than conventional models and have higher efficiency ratings.
In addition, make sure to keep your HVAC system clean and well-maintained. Changing the filter regularly, servicing it at least once a year, and cleaning the ducts will help ensure your system runs efficiently and that no energy is wasted.
4. Insulate Your Attic
The attic is one of the critical areas of a home to insulate if you want to maximize your comfort and energy efficiency. Attic insulation helps regulate the interior temperature, keeping your home warmer during winter and cooler during summer. It also prevents air from seeping out and prevents mold from forming, something that is especially important in humid climates.
You should look for a high R-value insulation material when insulating your attic. The higher the R-value, the better the heat resistance and the better it will keep your home insulated.
5. Invest in Smart Lighting
You might have heard about smart home techs like Amazon Alexa or Google Home, but did you know they also help increase your home’s comfort? You can command these devices to “turn on the lights,” and they will do the rest. You can also set the lights to turn off automatically when no one is home to save more energy.
In addition, modern smart lighting technology can adjust the lighting in your home depending on the time of day. It can create a warm, inviting atmosphere for evening family time or brighten your mornings with natural daylight-like hues. Plus, you can customize it according to your mood and lifestyle.
Make sure to have good lighting and use LED bulbs to ensure that you get the most out of your investment.
6. Install Programmable Thermostats
Thermostats can help keep a home comfortable. Programmable thermostats allow you to set specific temperatures and schedules. You can set a timer to turn the system off when you’re away and automatically turn it on when you get home.
Modern smart thermostats can also be synced with your phone, allowing you to monitor and adjust the temperature remotely for added convenience. It can also learn your usage habits and create a customized schedule to keep your home comfortable. You can reduce your energy usage by up to 10% by avoiding unnecessary heating or cooling when the house is empty or when you’re asleep.
7. Consider Adding Some Greenery
Few people realize this, but having plants in your home can positively impact comfort levels. Houseplants are the perfect choice for indoors. They look aesthetically pleasing and help purify the air.
Choose easy-to-care-for houseplants like succulents, ferns, palms, peace lilies, aloe vera, and snake plants. Place them in areas that receive sufficient sunlight throughout the day and ensure they get enough water regularly.
If you have pets at home, avoid potentially toxic plants and opt for pet-safe plants such as gerbera daisies, hens and chicks, and blue echeveria.
What’s a home if it’s not comfortable? Or, worst, eats away at your hard-earned money? Luckily, you don’t need to spend a hefty amount to make your home more homely. Installing energy-efficient windows, purchasing quality furniture, upgrading the HVAC system, and insulating the attic are some essentials you should focus on first. Other tasks include investing in smart lighting, adding greenery, and installing programmable thermostats. These are also great for transforming your home into a cozy place while optimizing energy efficiency.