How the smart home can save you money on energy

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Vector concept of smart house or smart home technology system with centralized control of lighting, heating, ventilation and air conditioning, security and video surveillanceBy Dani Nicole

Special to the Financial Independence Hub

You know money doesn’t grow on trees, but did you know your efforts to live a greener lifestyle at home can save you money?

A great way to start is by managing your home’s energy consumption. At Home Improvement Leads, we’re always searching for innovative tech and frugal tips to conserve energy and boost savings. Here are a few of our favourites:

Make Your Home Smarter

We’ve come a long way from the first clunky cell phones. Now, you can control your home’s energy usage from your smartphone. We love innovative tech that makes our home routines more convenient — like smart thermostats. A popular homeowner favorite is the Nest, which actually learns your heating and cooling behaviors and implements an automatic schedule.

frug1You can monitor everything right from your smartphone or tablet, which means you can turn the A/C or heat down when you’re going to be gone for a while, then crank it back up when you’re on your way home.

Smart outlets are great money-savers, too. Plugging appliances and electronics into smart outlets allows you to control everything from an app. Did you leave the iron on at home? No problem. It just takes a few clicks to turn everything off and give you peace of mind. These tech solutions are inexpensive when you think about how much money you can save on your monthly utility bills.

Double Up Your Window Panes

frug3Having windows that leak energy is a “pane” in the … wallet. Single-pane windows aren’t very effective at locking in heat and A/C. That means you’ll be adjusting the thermostat only to see that energy wasted.

Make a smart move and upgrade to double- or triple-pane windows. Case your windows in a wood frame and make sure everything is professionally installed. You’ll see your energy usage improve in no time!

Keep Your Home Cozy

frug2If your A/C and heater still aren’t working well, you may need to check your insulation. Insulation materials are all given an R-value, which signifies their resistance to conductive heat flow.

According to the Department of Energy, insulation materials with a higher R-value will be much more effective at regulating your home’s temperature. Recommended R-values will vary throughout your home, so stop by the Department of Energy’s website to find the best insulation strategy.

You can install insulation yourself or hire a contractor. Either way, this fix will help save you money in the long run.

Green Habits

When you were a kid, your parents may have nagged you to turn the water off when you brushed your teeth, or to flip the light switch on the way out of the room. You may have rolled your eyes, but those smart habits were adding up to big savings on utility bills.

Look for easy ways to conserve energy, like washing more dishes in one load or filling up each load of laundry. Turn off and unplug appliances when they aren’t in use, and if you see your electronics whirring when your TV is off, be sure to flip the switch.

We don’t always think about the small actions, but they add up. Enjoy saving money on your utility bills!

dani-nicholeDani Nicole is a professional and creative writer with a habit of buying “too many” books and drinking “too much” coffee. She writes regularly for Modernize.com with the goal of empowering homeowners with the expert guidance and educational tools they need to take on big home projects and everyday living with confidence.

 

 

 

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