Creating energy efficient home designs on a realistic household budget can be a challenge. Why? Many building materials that are energy efficient are expensive and will greatly affect the cost of building a new home. There are strategies to save money to help you build an efficient home. Here are 15 strategies to get you started:
1. Get quotes from several contractors who build efficient homes. When you are on a budget, it is best to shop around for home building prices. The more quotes you get, the more likely you are to get the best price.
2. Be patient and wait for sales on materials. When building on a household budget, don't pay full price for anything. Wait until energy efficient products go on sale and then buy what you need. It may take longer to get all the materials but you will save tons of money in the long run.
3. Take advantage of tax deductions on efficient materials. There are many tax deductions you can take for making energy efficient choices for your home. Be sure that you keep the receipts and necessary paper work for tax purposes at the end of the year.
4. Do some of the projects yourself. To save on energy efficiency, choose to do some of the projects yourself. Can you install the new air condition unit? How can you be an asset to the contractor that will save you money?
5. Efficiency from the planning stages. Keep your energy efficient home designs in mind from day one. In the planning stages, make sure every aspect of the construction is chosen for efficiency.
6. Are there rebates available? Some building materials will offer rebates on large purchases. Take the time to fill out the paperwork and send it in for your rebate.
7. Buying mid grade. If you are on a budget, the best of every product may not always be the right choice. Buying mid grade is often just as good and can save you big money.
8. Energy Star appliances. Even the appliances in your home should be efficient. Look for deal on Energy Star complient. Buying these appliances will help save you money in the future.
9. Buying in bulk. Bulk products are often cheaper. The more you buy, the more you save. Choose to buy building materials in bulk.
10. Contracting out the work yourself. Don't let the contractor handle all the work. Contract out the work yourself to get the most savings. Look for those who have experience working ith energy efficient home designs.
11. Utilizing your connections. If you know people who can give you good prices on efficient materials and products, don't be afraid to tell your contractor.
12. Don't rush the project. The more time your contractor has to complete the job, the better job he will do. Rushing the project will cause him to cut corners which will greatly reduce the efficiency of your new home.
13. Do the finish work yourself. If you can, choose to do some of the finish work yourself. This can save you tons of money and you help ensure that the materials you use are efficient to your standards.
14. Don't build too large. The larger the home, the more difficult it will be to keep it efficient. It will cost more to build, more to maintain, and more to heat and cool. To build energy efficient home designs on a household budget, keep the home small and cozy.
15. Go with basic materials instead of over the top materials such as granite. Many basic building materials are efficient. Choosing lavish, over the top materials will cost you more money and make it difficult to stick to a budget. For the most efficiency on a budget, choose basic building materials offered by your local hardware store.
If you are looking for energy efficient home designs on your realistic household budget, use as many of these 15 strategies to save money as possible. If you are willing to put in the time and effort, you can get the efficient home that you are looking for at the right price. Remember, think “efficient” from the very beginning and you will quickly realize that building one is easier and more cost effective that you think.
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Guest author Rabby Kanwaldeep works for PSAL, a company that offers professional crane training in Mali, Burkina Faso, and the rest of West Africa.
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