Aside from adding draft excluders to doors or bundling up in blankets to save on heating costs during the winter, there are plenty of long-term, sustainable and cost-effective improvements you can make to your home or rental property.
These improvements help reduce your energy consumption and make your home more sustainable as you invest in long-term changes.
Here are our top 3 sustainable, cost-effective home improvements:
Perhaps one of the simplest, energy-efficient and cost-effective ways of improving your home is through loft insulation. According to recent stats, you could be losing 1/3 of your home’s heating through ineffective loft insulation, costing the average UK detached home an extra £250 a year.
For loft insulation to be effective, the insulation should have a depth of at least 270 mm, between and above the joists. Improving your loft insulation can save you hundreds of pounds a year for the foreseeable future, making it a worthwhile investment.
Aside from the roof, two of the biggest thermally ineffective items in the home are single glazed doors or solid material doors. These types of doors have a low U-value - which measures how energy-efficient the door is at conserving heat within the home.
Replacing your door's single glazing with double glazing or changing your solid material door for one made out of composite materials (which are designed to reduce heat transfer) are both long term ways you can reduce your energy and heat consumption.
Note - doors installed before 2002 should have their U-value reviewed as they are likely to have a low rating.
Hot Water Tank Thermostat
Installing a hot water tank thermostat or checking your existing one for faults is a quick and easy way to ensure your hot water tank is working effectively. A faulty thermostat can cause problems for your home as you could be left with no hot water or water that’s heated beyond safe temperatures.
We recommend employing a trained professional who can check your thermostat's and boiler’s efficiency in under 30-minutes safely. Avoid checking the thermostat's quality yourself as exposed wires and high voltage appliances can cause harm when incorrectly handled.
Planning for sustainability
Though these changes could save you money for years to come, it can be difficult to find the money to pay for them in the first place. However, with the introduction of UK government’s Green Homes Grant, you may be eligible to receive money towards making these improvements.
Homeowners and landlords have until 31st March to take advantage of the grant, which covers two-thirds of the home improvement costs for up to £5,000, or £10,000 if you are also receiving additional benefits. The grant covers labour, materials and VAT.
Each of the sustainable, cost-effective improvements listed above are included in the Green Home Grant, along with many more that can save you money in the long-term. Check your eligibility and the additional improvements that the grant covers here.