When your home is need of an upgrade, think green. Even the smallest eco-friendly change can have a large impact in the long run. To get the biggest bang for your buck, there are a couple things that you should consider.

One thing to keep in mind as you reduce your energy consumption is the complexity of the project. You can do most of the small tasks yourself, but the larger, more time-consuming projects should be reserved for professionals. Once you’ve thought about the basics, you’ll be ready to choose a project. There are many ways for you to conserve energy in your home, and six of them are listed below.

  1. Lighting. Nearly ten percent of energy bills are attributed to lighting, so using compact fluorescents (CFLs) or light-emitting diodes (LEDs) can save energy and money.

  2. Programmable thermostat. Adjusting your home’s temperature by 10 to 15 degrees while you’re away can save up to 15 percent on heating and cooling costs. A programmable thermostat can help automate this process so you won’t need to think twice about it.

  3. Cool roofs. Cool roofs reflect sunlight and reduce heat absorption. A cool roof can keep traditional roofs 50 degrees cooler, which saves on energy and air conditioning costs.

  4. Insulation. Energy bills run high when a home is poorly insulated. To reduce heating and cooling loss, consult an expert on the best types and placement of insulation.

  5. Windows. Older window frames or glass can let in unwanted air and raise heating and cooling bills. Energy-efficient windows can stop this problem.

  6. HVAC. The older an HVAC system gets, the less efficient it becomes. Investing in an ENERGY STAR- qualified HVAC system can cut heating and cooling costs by up to $200 and save on energy.

Conserving energy is just one way for you to save money and the environment. Conserving water usage is just as important, and there are many options for you to consider. Fortunately, with the right tips, you can make all kinds of energy-efficient upgrades throughout your house.

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