As the dropping temperatures of autumn pave the way for the chilling winter air to come, now is an ideal time to boost the energy-efficiency of your home. No matter how cost-effective your home improvements may prove to be in the long run, you should avoid making any residential adjustments you cannot afford.
If you are like the vast majority of homeowners, you want to upgrade your home but fear that you simply don’t have enough capital on hand to do so, but are you looking hard enough to find funding for that essential investment in your home; one that will ultimately pay dividends for years to come?
Effectively Use Your Home’s Equity for an Energy Efficient Fall
As you make regular mortgage payments each month, you are building more and more equity in your home.
Briefly defined, equity is the monetary gap between what you owe on your house and what your house is currently worth. As you close that gap, you can use the financial value of that equity to your advantage. From consolidating debts to covering major expenses, there is little a home equity loan or home equity line of credit (HELOC) cannot accomplish.
Homeowners will consider borrowing against the equity they have built to make key home improvements focusing on green sustainability and overall energy efficiency. As winter rapidly approaches, here are just a few home upgrades that you may want to consider:
- Go Solar – By adding solar panels to your home to generate clean and efficient energy, you can potentially lower your monthly electric bill. Plus, by going off-grid with your energy needs, you can do your part when it comes to combating global warming and improving environmental air quality.
- Fully seal and insulate your home – Nothing drives up home energy expenses faster than hidden structural drafts. In addition to helping retain heat this winter, sealing up all cracks and holes can greatly improve your home’s ventilation. Pay close attention to attic spaces, as this is where the vast majority of warm air escapes as it rises. In addition to ensuring that your home is well sealed, make sure that it is adequately insulated.
- Upgrade your home’s windows – Inefficient windows are one of the most common causes of heat loss in homes across the United States. Consider installing technologically advanced, multi-pane windows that will not only increase energy efficiency but keep you far more comfortable and cozy.
- Upgrade your heating system – A good question to ask yourself is, exactly how old is my furnace? If it is nearing the end of its lifespan or if you are simply ready for an upgrade, trading in your furnace for a new one can do wonders for your energy expenditure. It may cost a significant amount upfront, but moving from an outdated furnace to a new high-efficiency unit may result in significantly lower operating costs. You may even want to consider installing a clean and effective wood burning stove for a similar impact.
- Switch out your lightbulbs – As we move closer to the winter solstice, daylight hours will decrease and lightbulb use will continue to rise. By switching out your inefficient incandescent light bulbs and fixtures to accommodate green LED or CFL technology, you can prepare yourself for a far brighter winter.
- Remodel your kitchen – Refrigerators and ovens are typically major energy guzzlers. Investing in modern kitchen appliances with high energy efficiency ratings may result in immediate utility bill savings.
No matter which of these energy efficient home improvements fit your wants and needs, you can likely find a home equity loan or HELOC to fund it. From our variety of equity-based lending solutions to our traditional home construction loans, Field & Main Bank is here to help ready your home for winter.
At Field & Main Bank, we are committed to ensuring that you have the support you need while examining your loan options throughout the loan application process, up until after the loan closes. If you want to make the absolute best use of the equity that has already built into your home, contact us and let’s begin working on your home equity loan today.