So you just bought the house of your dreams. If you are like me you just can’t wait to put your mark on this new project. Have you noticed that? Everyone has that one thing that marks the house as “It Is Now Mine”.  And when that is complete it is ok to take a breath and let the rest of it fall into place as we go. For me it’s a red door. I can’t rest until that front door is a rusty old barn red.

Another great thought might be looking at all the areas that could use a little updating to save you several dollars over the coming years.  What is also helpful is several improvements not only save over the years but also are tax deductible as well as having rebates, just make sure you check yearly to see what new types of each product are accepted for tax credits and which have new rebates. Any green energy improvement adds value to your home. Solar Array can cut costs up to $2500.00 per year. They are energy panels and they come in all sizes now prices vary and rebates and tax credits apply. Solar Water Heaters ranging $2000 to $5000 but pay for themselves in 2 years.Wind Generator, a small version that has several prices and kits and they are worth it as they can offset energy costs by 90%. Rainwater Harvesting systems are simple to connect to the gutter. Rain is collected and stored in a barrel and can save you money on your outdoor watering costs.

Then the HVAC system, if your unit is old it can cost 30% more to use. Heating and cooling runs 43% of your energy bill. A new one HVAC system may run $4000 and take 7 years to recoup that price tag. Compared to your energy bills and repair costs it may be a good option for you to plan along the way. Besides checking the insulation in your new home your windows may need a little touch up because they have huge energy losses. One single pane window can allow 25% of your energy to go skipping across the lawn. Installing double pane windows is a great idea and the average cost can run around $600 and save you $500 per year. Then the weather kits on windows is an option. Made of plastic film that covers the window and run about $15.00 per window.

Energy Star Appliances do use less water and power and come with different ratings per maker. Some of those makers even thought of turquoise appliances, yes they did. Even the new smart power strips save around 20% on energy bills. There are even smart power strips that help save energy by shutting off as soon as all items are fully charged or not in use and has surge protectors. Now that is smart!

In many cases it is a great idea to upgrade and make life more affordable and also increase the value of your home at the same time. In the long run there will be more funds for all the fun decorating like that Chili Pepper painted cabinet that would sing, “I am awesome!”, to all that see it.