When it comes to established neighborhoods, mature landscaping, and a great sense of community, older homes cannot be beat. Homes built decades, or even more than a century ago, also tend to have a lot of charm and architectural features that are hard to find in new construction homes. While there are many positives, there are also a few negatives. Energy efficiency can be a big issue in older homes. Making an older home more energy efficient can also be prohibitively expensive. Here are three relatively inexpensive ways to increase the energy efficiency of an older home.
Windows account for about 30% of heating and air conditioning loss. While energy efficient windows can cut this number in half, in many cases that only adds up to a savings of a couple of hundred of dollars each year. Window replacement can easily cost as much as $1,000 per window. Older homes also often have non-standard windows that are difficult to replicate. If the windows in the home are intact and in good condition, replacement may not be the right choice. What homeowners can do to create more efficiency is use home window tinting. Tinting costs on average between $405 and $681 and can save money on energy bills. For more information, contact companies like MidAmerica Tint.
Another way to make an older home more efficient is by adding weather stripping around windows and doors. Not only does weather stripping work well to keep energy costs down, it's a less expensive alternative to replacing windows and doors. Weather stripping works by preventing the air leaks that can lead to higher energy costs. Most homeowners spend between $131 and $373 weather stripping a home. Weather stripping tape, door sweeps, gaskets, and fin seals are all great weather stripping choices for older homes.
Remember That Older Homes Are Built Differently
One thing that can save a homeowner a lot of money is remembering that older homes are built differently. This means that new, energy efficient products may not work as well in older homes. Homes built before modern heating and air conditioning often have built in cooling and heating mechanisms. This means that homeowners should be judicious when they make changes to the home. For instance, older homes were often meant to be heated one room at a time. Making use of existing fireplaces and installing smart thermostats can help heat a home during winter.
Making an older home more energy efficient doesn't have to be a budget breaking process. Simple fixes such as adding window tinting film, weather stripping, and working with the original design plan of the home can save money in the long run.