Energy efficient homes are growing more and more popular. In fact, 84% of survey respondents said green properties are generally better places to live, according to our research. There are lots of reasons to consider going green; saving natural resources, reducing pollution and health benefits are just a few.
Did you know going green can save you money? Outdated systems and energy wasters like inefficient appliances, poor insulation and incandescent light bulbs cost U.S. consumers approximately $300 billion per year.
Here's how you can start saving green by going green.
Your first step should be evaluating where in your home you can make green improvements. The Department of Energy has a series of data-driven tools and calculators to help you determine good starting points — evaluating the size of your home, when it was built, your location, and more. Shop around for the options that best suit your home and lifestyle.
You can also hire a professional to perform energy audits on your home and they will help pinpoint where you're losing energy and what renovations will save you money.
You may be wondering if you can afford green improvements, especially some of the more extensive renovations and new technologies. There are a wide variety of programs that may help finance your ecofriendly home makeover. For example, Freddie Mac GreenCHOICE Mortgages℠ help facilitate the financing of energy efficient home improvements and repairs, helping more families across the United States attain and maintain home affordability.
If you decide to make green updates, you may be able to apply for tax credits for installing energy-efficient technologies and appliances in your home. Both government and private sources offer grants and subsidies for specific renovations. Each home is unique, and your eligibility may vary, so be sure to consult to a trusted advisor whether it's your family, friends, real estate agent, or lender.
The Green Advantage
What about renters? A recent survey revealed nearly half of renters are willing to pay more for rental properties with cost-saving water and energy features. At Freddie Mac, our Green Advantage® program helps to make rental housing more resource-efficient, which can lead to lower rents and utility costs. To date, the program's projected water and energy savings can be represented by 5,500 Olympic sized pools… or about 300 million pints of Guinness.
Whether you rent or own, we encourage you to consider the many benefits of living in a green home this St. Patty's Day.