Whether you are listing your home for sale, or seeking to update your current home, environmentally friendly features are updates that will only increase the value of your home. One simple step to go green is to replace your older appliances with energy-efficient versions. Appliances with the Energy Star certification are 10-50% more efficient, on average, than traditional appliances. Energy Star refrigerators, for example, use 40% less energy than refrigerators produced in 2001, for example. And, while you are updating these appliances, make sure they are stainless steel (silver, black or slate are all on trend and will stay on trend for years to come). Motion sensor light switches in all bathrooms and closets are another easy way to update your home while increasing both the value and the efficient use of energy.
Another quick way to go green is to install a digital thermostat. These new thermostats are programmable, have no moving parts (thus need no repair), and they increase the efficiency of the energy used to heat and cool your home, which is better for the environment, and your wallet. Water is another area in which conservation is key. Low-flow showerheads, faucets and toilets are all easy ways to reduce the amount of water used in everyday life. Drinking water is another area where a small investment can pay big dividends for the environment. Water filtration systems such as reverse-osmosis will eliminate reliance on wasteful plastic bottles and containers, and will reduce one’s carbon footprint. These systems will also be touted as an upgrade if you do decide to put your home on the market.
Finally, whether you are painting your home to prep it for sale, or freshening up the paint in your current residence, low or no VOC (volatile organic compounds) paint is an easy way to reduce the toxicity of your environment. The EPA has determined that inside air is 3-5 times more toxic than outdoor air, thanks to the toxic compounds in paint and finishes in your home. Low or no VOC paint is also beneficial for health reasons, and people with allergies or sensitivities to chemicals will also appreciate these paints.
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