5 Ways to Make Your Atlanta Home More Energy-Efficient

5 Ways to Make Your Atlanta Home More Energy-Efficient

  • Molly Carter Gaines
  • 02/28/23

Energy efficiency is a popular topic in today’s world. Many homeowners are concerned with rising fuel costs, especially during a time when inflation is as high as it’s been in several years. Energy efficiency is also a hot issue among people who shop for homes in Atlanta, such as Morningside real estate.
One of the most common questions a potential homebuyer will ask about a property is regarding the home’s energy efficiency. If you want to make your home more energy-efficient so that you can save money on fuel costs and increase the level of your home’s appeal, you have come to the right place. Here are five ways that you can quickly make your Atlanta home more energy-efficient.

1. Improve your attic insulation

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The Department of Energy recommends that homes in Atlanta be insulated to the point where they have a minimum R-value of R-38. This measurement has to do with how thick the insulation in your attic is, and assessing the R-value is a common recommendation for homes across the country. Many homeowners report that increasing their insulation to R-38 can save as much as 30% on the costs of heating and cooling the home.

You can calculate your home’s current R-rating by multiplying the thickness of your insulation by the current R-value of whatever insulation you have. Most homes have insulation that rates between 2.5 and 3.5. For instance, if your insulation is currently four inches thick and your insulation has a value of three, your R-rating would be 12. To achieve a rating of R-38 with a similar type of insulation, the insulation would need to be around 13 inches thick.

If you want to make your home even more energy-efficient, you can raise your insulation up to R-60. This is on the higher end of the amount of insulation recommended for your home, but it will help a great deal during the colder winter months.

2. Add roof ventilation

Have you noticed how hot your attic can feel during the summer months? It’s because your attic likely has little to no ventilation. When this happens, you spend more money on your A/C bill as heat becomes trapped inside your home, and your unit works harder to cool things down.

Reach out to your roofing contractor and ask if they can give you an estimate for what it would cost to add vents into your attic. If you currently have vents, you may still want to work with a company that can evaluate their current condition and make sure they are the proper size for your roof. If your attic is fitted with vents that are the wrong size or type, they won’t function as effectively as you would hope, and they won’t do much to keep your energy costs down.

3. Replace your windows

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Your attic is only one of the areas in your home where you should be concerned about insulation. The amount of heat gained and lost through your home’s windows accounts for 25 to 30% of your overall energy use. Replacing your windows can save you a great deal of money on your home’s energy costs while also helping to boost your home’s exterior appearance.

There are also steps you can take to reduce the amount of heat gained and lost through your windows, even if you aren’t ready to do a full-on replacement. You can start by checking your windows for any possible leaks. Add caulking or weather stripping to the sides of the windows where the existing sealant may be starting to wear down. Consider using storm windows or panels for extra protection. You can even add exterior shading or blinds or purchase energy-efficient window coverings if you want to go the extra mile

4. Buy a new garage door

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Purchasing a new garage door is another way that you can improve your home’s level of insulation. Like attic insulation, garage doors also have an R-value. Most experts recommend looking for a garage door with an R-value of at least 10.

Another term that often comes up is the U-value. This number measures how effectively heat can move through the material for thermal efficiency. This gives you an idea of how much heat you’ll lose through your garage door and how easily energy can pass through. Lower numbers are better than higher numbers when you’re looking at U-value.

The other benefit of purchasing a new garage door is that you’ll improve your home’s curb appeal. This will come into play down the road when you choose to sell your Morningside home.

5. Upgrade your appliances

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Around 40% of your energy costs come from heating and cooling your home. It’s important to address these things, but there are still more steps that you can take to improve your home’s energy efficiency and lower your utility bills.

Your appliances account for almost 10% of your total energy bill. Besides your heating and cooling costs, the only greater energy expense is heating water for showers and laundry. The easiest way to spend less on operating your appliances (besides using them less often) is to purchase newer, more energy-efficient models. A new washing machine will use 25% less energy than models that were built 20 years ago. They also use far less water than older models.

Perhaps you want to see what your home could be worth on the open market after you incorporate a few of these tips and make your home more energy-efficient. Expert agent Molly Carter Gaines boasts a wealth of experience helping clients buy and sell amazing properties. She understands what it takes to find success in an ever-changing real estate market and will work hard to represent each individual she works with to the best of her abilities. Reach out to Molly if you’re thinking about shopping for Morningside homes for sale.

*Header photo courtesy of Molly Carter Gains

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