Lots of us are thinking about what ways to live more sustainably and use resources like energy and water more responsibly. Some of them require a big investment upfront, and just aren’t realistic for many families. Don’t be discouraged if those options aren’t in the budget, because there are lots of actions you can easily take right now to start living in a more environmentally friendly way.
Back to basics
Make sure you’re doing the easy stuff: lowering your thermostat when you’re out of the home, knocking it down at night, or simply dropping it a degree or two and wearing a cardigan indoors. Another easy tip, one of several cited at howstuffworks.com, is to reduce ‘”vampire energy” by unplugging appliances or chargers not being used, so that they don’t drain electricity unnecessarily.
Instead of going to the thermostat to get that warm, snug feeling, add comfort to the home with soft furnishings, blankets, and other elements that can help you stay toasty without having to waste power. Of course, if it’s too cold for comfort, don’t put your health at risk by not turning the heating on!
Older and under-maintained furnaces can push up energy bills. And the new generation of furnaces are so much more efficient than in the past. If you’re due for a new furnace, look for rebate and incentive programs that can help you replace your ailing heating system cost-effectively. In Canada, many provinces have them; for example, B.C.-based heating and cooling company Tekclimate.ca can help customers receive a rebate of up to $1000.
Spend a bit, save a lot
Insulation is another building material that is incentivized with financial assistance. And why not? Better insulated homes help save money and the planet. Again, eligibility will differ from place to place to place, and from person to person.
In the GTA, windfallcentre.ca – a Natural Resources Canada (NRCAN) licensed service provider – guides client through the programs that incentivize insulation and draft-proofing. That could mean getting a rebate on energy-efficient technology that keeps the home warm, and saving on the installations that will retain heat in the home during the winter, and keep it out during the summer. The company describes it as a two-in-one deal at no cost to the homeowner.
Whatever costs do come with these suggestions, keep in mind that you’ll get good return over the long term. The less energy you use, the more you save, making HVAC efficiency in the home a wise investment.
Feature image by RachelW1 from Pixabay
This is a collaborative post. It was not reviewed prior to publication.