Are you thinking about making some home improvements? Consider incorporating options that will help to improve energy efficiency and increase your property value while giving the place a new look. Here are a few effective options that may be right for you:
Plant a Few New Trees
An effective way to improve your home's overall energy efficiency while at the same time increase your property value is to plant a few new trees in the yard. Not only will your new trees shade your home from the sun when it's hot outside and provide wind protection during the winter, but you can also expect them to increase your property value by up to 20 percent. In fact, each tree you plant has the potential of being appraised at between $1,000 and $10,000 each upon maturity!
Plant your new trees in front of windows that tend to get direct sunlight in the summer and near your exterior HVAC unit if you have one. But make sure you know how big each tree you choose will get once it matures so you can plant it far enough away from your home so that its branches won't hit the roof if they break off due to a storm or some type of damage once they get big. You can plant any kind of trees you'd like, but consider planting at least one fruit tree so you can benefit from free food throughout the year.
Install a Solar Water Heater
By getting rid of your electric water heater and replacing it with a solar option, you'll save some money on power bills every month, and in the process reduce your household's overall carbon footprint by a whopping 50 percent. And because a solar water heater offers these benefits, your new unit will help increase your home's overall value when all is said and done. Replacing your water heater will also give you an opportunity to redesign and update the space in which the heater resides – you should find that doing things like repairing structural damage during this time is less costly and time consuming.
Insulate the Garage
Insulating your attached garage is a great way to maintain comfortable temperatures when it's particularly hot or cold outside and while doing things such as laundry, packing the car for a trip, or working out. A properly insulated garage will also help to increase your home value, as it's typically a major selling point for buyers. You can have the garage walls professionally insulated, or use spray foam insulation to do the job yourself and save some money on labor.
You can also apply insulation film to any windows in the garage for indoor UV protection and enhanced energy efficiency. After insulating the garage, you may find that the space is suitable to be used as an extension of your home. Perhaps it can be turned into a family room, home office, guest room, or indoor playground for the kids.
Replace Your Windows
One of the most powerful ways to improve your home's overall energy efficiency is to replace all the windows. You may be eligible to receive a tax credit upon installation of Energy Star rated window replacements, which should help keep your initial investment costs reasonable. And it's possible to recoup up to 90 percent of your window investment as the years pass due to the energy savings you'll experience.
Consider having your window trim replaced with an updated version while having the panes replaced to give the windows a completely new look that improves curb appeal outdoors and gives indoor spaces new depth. If you aren't inclined to invest in new trim, you can sand and paint the trim that's already in place to update their look a bit.
These tips and tricks are straight forward and are sure to provide you and your family with benefits for many years to come.