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HOW TO MAKE YOUR HOME MORE ENERGY EFFICIENT

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Becoming more energy efficient isn’t just for people who want to save the environment. It is also a great way to keep your household budget in check. When you cut back on how much energy you use, you are able to cover both benefits with one action. There are many steps you can take to make your home more energy efficient. Some energy-efficient changes are one-time investments. Others are things you can do every day! It can be something as big as installing solar panels, or something as small as turning off the lights.

Energy efficiency is one of the easiest ways to reduce your impact on the planet and have a positive effect on your community so have a look at these 7 opportunities to make energy saving improvements at home.

1: Insulate your home. During the freezing winter, you can add new or additional insulation to your ceilings, attic and walls along with using caulking or weather stripping to make sure doors and windows are properly sealed, it will prevent cold drafts and air leaks to keep warm air inside. When the weather heats up, these same improvements will help trap the cool air from air conditioning inside your home, thus meaning you won’t have to leave it running quite so long or at temperatures that are too low.

2: Revamp your windows. Your windows are a major source of heat loss in a home.

  • Replace aluminum frames with upvc frames which are more resistant to heat transfer.
  • Have multiple panes. Double- or triple-glazed gas-filled windows are great for keeping the heat in and the cold out.
  • Tint your windows. It’s surprising how much unwanted heat and cold you can keep out by having tinted windows. You could opt to just do the back windows if it doesn’t look great on the front of the house.

3: Replace old appliances. Older appliances are less energy-efficient than newer models. When shopping, look for models that are labeled as “Energy Star Certified”  or A+++ to ensure you’re getting an energy- and money-saving appliance.

  • Get low-flow fixtures and appliances. Low-flow toilets, shower heads, and washing machines can save a lot of water.

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4: Use your appliances efficiently. Study the operator’s manual for each appliance so you’re familiar with the proper operating methods. Minimise their energy expenditure by minimising their use. Do full loads of clothes and dishes each time. Since your fridge is the one appliance in your home that’s always on, maximise its efficiency by turning the temperature to the “energy-efficient” setting. Most modern fridges have a vacation setting that you should use when away from home for extended periods of time. When you go on holiday don’t just turn off your appliances, unplug them. Even though they’re off, there is still energy that’s being wasted.

5: Keep your water heater warm. The “warm” range (50 to 60 degrees Celsius) is fine. In fact, newer water heaters will turn the temperature down to 60 if you turn it up past that. It just doesn’t need to be that hot.

6: Switch from old incandescent bulbs. Compared to traditional incandescents, energy-efficient lightbulbs such as halogen, compact fluorescent lamps (CFLs), and light emitting diodes (LEDs) typically use about 25%-80% less energy. They can also last last 3-25 times longer. In many locations now, it is impossible to even purchase incandescent bulbs.

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7: Add solar panels. Adding solar panels to your house can help you cut down on energy costs by helping you produce a little bit of your own electricity. In a country like Malta, that sees lots of sunshine during the year, you might even generate enough electricity to sell back to the energy providers for use on the national grid.

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Energy efficiency is a feature that is becoming more and more sought after in the sale and purchase of properties nowadays. In fact all property purchases in Malta today include the requirement for the property to have an energy efficiency performance certificate awarded. An Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) is similar to a household electrical appliance energy label. The EPC has scale bar/s showing the energy rating of your building and its carbon emissions, with zero being the most energy efficient and the other extreme being the least efficient.

You might want to try those some of the energy saving measures suggested above to improve our home’s energy efficiency before putting it on the market.  This will make your property more attractive as it will provide the new owners with savings over conventional homes and allow them to save energy, and greenhouse gas emissions.

You can ask the experts at Dhalia Real Estate Services for advice on energy efficient buildings when buying or selling your property.  They will be happy to guide you on the best options for you to make your property truly saleable or buying the most energy efficient house available on the market.

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