What to Know About Winterizing Your Home


The temperature is dropping and your energy bill is rising, but where does that leave your home’s value? With some quick and easy winterization tips for today, you can retain or even add value to your home in the long run.

What to Know About the Value of Your Home

With a professional inspection, an energy audit (check with your utility provider to see whether one can be done at no charge), regular maintenance, and some simple adjustments and improvements, you will be sitting pretty knowing your home is maximizing its value throughout this winter season. An inspector can discover hidden problems that could negatively impact your home’s value (and cause energy costs to soar) or lead to a big surprise bill down the road if left undiscovered now. Similarly, staying on top of regular maintenance today eliminates many issues down the road should you decide to sell. More importantly, you can maximize your home’s value by maximizing the energy efficiency of your home.

The temperature is dropping and your energy bill is rising, but where does that leave your home’s value? With some quick and easy winterization tips for today, you can retain or even add value to your home in the long run.“An energy-efficient home will save you money now, which can be applied to other updates, and is a more valuable and marketable asset in the long run,” write the professionals from HGTV on the network website.

How to Save Energy by Winterizing

Making your home more energy efficient this season can be quite simple. Here are a few quick tips for winterizing your home:

Caulk around windows

Little gaps between your window and door frames and the walls let cold air in and allow warm air to escape. Even if you’ve caulked before, the caulk will deteriorate over time, leaving costly holes for escaping air. It costs a lot of money to heat the outdoors.

Replace weather stripping

“If you can see light around the edges of your doors, you need new weather stripping,” says personal finance writer Teresa Mears in U.S. News & World Report.

The biggest culprit is between the bottom of your door and the floor. Dodge the draft by replacing weather strips or investing in a handy “draft snake.” Another option for both of the above is to install storm doors or windows.

Improve Insulation

Like caulk, insulation deteriorates over time, so you will want to double-check yours every year.

“An insulated home loses a quarter of its heat through the roof, according to Energy Savers,” writes Vivian Giang of Business Insider.

In addition to adding insulation to your attic, you may want to do the same in any crawl spaces you have, and create a false ceiling in an unfinished basement by insulating between that ceiling and the living area.

Install a Programmable Thermostat

These can be quite sophisticated, but even a simple one that you can purchase for $25 at your local hardware store will get the job done. You can program the thermostat to run 15 degrees or so lower while you are out of the house, and have it raise the temp again for when you return.

Lower Your Water Heater Temperature

Water heaters are typically set at 140 degrees by default, but 120 is the temperature recommended by the Consumer Product Safety Commission, Mears says. By lowering it 20 degrees, you will feel no real difference but end up saving about 10 percent on your energy bill annually, along with permitting your water heater to work a bit easier.

It’s possible you have already gotten a head start on some of these tips before the first real cold spell of the winter season, but even if you haven’t, it’s never too late to begin saving money while retaining or adding value to your home.

 

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