As spring approaches, you’re probably planning to clear-out dust bunnies and let in some fresh air. But homeowners who set their sights a little higher are likely to find themselves saving money on utility bills while preserving the structural integrity of their home.
“Although they may be out-of-site, your home’s roofing and siding should be top of mind as warmer days approach,” Heller said. “Your roof is your first line of defense against many of nature’s elements, so it’s a good idea to have an expert inspect it annually.”
Heller, owner of Heller Building and Remodeling, has overseen building additions and remodeling in Montgomery County for more than 25 years. It takes his team of roofers only a day to update the average roof with quality materials, he said, and two to four days to replace siding. The payoff for the homeowner can be huge, reducing a home’s energy consumption by up to 30 percent with updates such as insulated siding and a housewrap or roof vents and solar-powered exhaust fans.
“A home’s exterior will sustain an amount of natural weathering over the years, and sometimes extreme elements like hail and strong wind cause damage that requires immediate attention,” Heller said. “Beyond that, there are some basic, affordable updates we recommend to reduce heat build-up and lower utility bills.” With the help of Heller’s team everyone home owner can build additions.
Heller’s top recommendations for money-saving exterior improvements are:
- Ridge vents – A ridge vent can be added running the entire length of the roof peak which will allow the roof to breathe naturally, prolonging its life. Ridge vents blend into the roofline for a more attractive home and have consistently proven to be very efficient.
- Skylights – The addition of energy-saving solar operational skylights to your home bring a variety of benefits and they are eligible for a 30 percent tax credit on materials and labor. Skylights brighten your home and are rapidly growing as a favorite, natural and efficient alternative to interior lighting powered by electricity. They also make rooms appear larger and provide outstanding levels of daytime light with vibrant color. Vinyl-framed skylights transfer very little heat and cold virtually eliminating condensation and are therefore the top choice for many homeowners.
- Exhaust Fans – Solar roof exhaust fans are powered entirely by the sun so they run at no charge to you during the day. They’re so energy efficient that models installed on residential homes qualify for a 30% Federal Tax Credit. Beyond that, attic venting can reduce the load on your AC system saving money on your utility bills during the hottest months of the year.
- Siding and Housewraps – Replacing standard siding with insulated vinyl siding is an easy way to regulate temperatures in your home. Installing a housewrap beneath siding provides added benefit, keeping outside water from entering the walls and sealing in your home to keep outside air outside.
All homes require updates and improvements during their lifespan, so it’s important to know your options and choose environmentally-friendly products and materials when possible. Doing so allows you to reap the benefits of lower utility bills and applicable tax credits while saving the planet in the process.