June 20, 2014
How to Protect Yourself from Rising Energy Costs
The best way to keep your energy costs low is to use less energy. The more energy efficient your home is, the less you will pay in monthly energy bills. But, do you know where to start? Should you replace your windows? Should you upgrade your insulation or should you just turn down your thermostat?
Get a Certified Energy Audit
The best way to focus your money is to have an energy audit completed by a Certified Energy Auditor. A Certified Energy Auditor evaluates and tests how energy efficient your home is through an energy audit. The Certified Energy Auditor will determine where and how energy is being used in your home which allows them to prioritize the various energy upgrades that can give you the best energy savings results. The prioritization ensures you don’t spend money on energy upgrades that will yield low results. An energy audit will provide you with recommendations for improvements that can maximize your home’s energy efficiency, reduce your energy bills and increase home comfort.
Energy Savings Programs
Currently, Enbridge Gas Distribution has various energy conservation programs to help homeowners save money and energy. The Enbridge Community Energy Conservation Program provides homeowners with a monetary incentive for completing a minimum of two energy upgrades from a list of eight measures and saving at least 25% annual gas savings. A Certified Energy Auditor will perform an energy audit and determine how much natural gas you can save with renovations or energy upgrades which will be translated into a dollar amount.
Another program is the Enbridge Home Rating Program for those who are in the market to purchase or sell a home. If you are selling your home, Enbridge will send you a $100 Lowes card and an Energy Savings kit ($100 Value), if you choose to post your energy audit rating or energy label on your MLS listing. If you are purchasing a resale home, Enbridge will provide you with a free energy audit (valued at $350). Home buyers have to include the request for an energy audit in their purchase and sale agreement. The energy audit is for informational purposes only and will not affect the sale or purchase of a house.
For more information on both Enbridge programs, please visit www.knowyourenergyscore.ca
By Steve Ramoul, The Home Inspectors Group