Being energy-smart is essential in today’s society. Prices for gas and electricity are rising; therefore, being energy-efficient in your home is more important than ever.
Energy efficiency does not mean giving up your usage, rather minimising your output without suffering a loss in quality. In order to fully optimise your energy, you must monitor your usage and maximise the way you use your power.
New build homes are becoming more energy-efficient as new targets and regulations are introduced for property developers to meet, so now may be a better time than ever to purchase an energy-efficient home.
Why is energy efficiency so important?
On the 1st of April, a new energy price cap came into effect that increased the amount energy suppliers can charge households in England, Wales and Scotland. This particular cap increased the amount by 54%, meaning millions of households could pay up to £700 a year more for their energy.
Smart Meters are currently being fitted in all new build homes, and energy suppliers are being instructed to install them in older households. The cap will be reviewed again in October, therefore monitoring and optimising your energy usage will benefit you financially and environmentally.
Does my home really make a difference?
Investing in energy-efficient measures can be beneficial not just to the environment but also to the homeowner. From financial benefits to improvements in physical health, optimising your energy usage should be a significant consideration.
For example, turning the thermostat down just 1°C can save up to 8% in electricity costs. More significant changes such as investing in an electric car or using a bike where possible, instead of a petrol-powered vehicle, can notably reduce the air pollution you and your family are exposed to, while upping your physical fitness in the process.
Why should I optimise my energy usage?
Small changes in the way your household runs can result in big consequences, namely reducing your carbon footprint and gas emissions. Protecting the environment is a major factor in conserving energy, and individual people can make a significant difference. UK greenhouse gas emissions rose nearly 5% in 2021 compared to 2020; small changes can reduce your gas emissions by up to 30%.
Alongside the environmental benefits, optimising your energy usage will bring a sleuth of financial ones, too. Investing in energy-efficient appliances is an excellent way to save on your energy bills in the long term. By EU law, all appliances must carry an energy-efficient label.
Some may be hesitant about investing in appliances such as this because of the slightly increased price; however the savings in the long-term far outweighs the initial cost. For example, LED light bulbs require six times less the amount of power that regular light bulbs use, meaning you’ll save six times the amount on your lighting bill.
Other measures such as improving insulation, draught protection and weatherization all contribute to maintaining a constant home environment. Environments such as this lower the risk of illness and can be beneficial for young children and the elderly.
What if I want to move?
To significantly increase your energy optimisation, living in a home that was designed to be energy-efficient is most effective. This may not be an option for everyone, but if you’re looking to move or purchase your first home, looking into energy-efficiency will be profitable.
Many property developers are committed to building energy-efficient new build homes. Darlington and other areas are seeing an array of homes built with advanced technology, sustainability and thermal efficiency at the forefront of their designs.
There are other ways to check if a potential home is energy-efficient, for example checking the energy certificate. When a home is up for sale, it’ll legally need to be available to read. Another way is to conduct your own energy audit. Factors such as insulation, thermostats and window glazing can give you a good idea about a house’s efficiency.