Tips to make your home more energy efficient

Tips to make your home more energy efficient

(Updated November 2017) 

As the popularity of sustainable, greener living continues to gain traction across Australia, it could be worth giving it some thought if you're interested in taking out a home construction loan and pursuing the building of your own home. This is one of the major benefits of your own housing project - being able to tailor the property from the ground up to fit your wants and needs. Installing the right fixtures and features can work in your favour to help you achieve ongoing savings in the future.

Working towards a cleaner, greener lifestyle has a number of benefits. While saving the planet is a noble cause, adopting a more sustainable mode of living can end up helping you save a lot of money in the long run on energy expenditure. In fact, under the Building Code of Australia, all new homes have to meet a minimum level of energy efficiency. However, it could be worth speaking to your builder about achieving a seven- or eight-star energy efficiency rating for your home. 

According to, constructing a home with an eight-star energy efficiency rating adds only 3.6 per cent to your initial construction costs, but can help you save over 40 per cent on the cost of heating and cooling your home throughout the year. This is a dramatic reduction in both energy and cost, which could be a brilliant thing to achieve.

If you're wondering about the types of things that can be done to a home to help reduce the energy expenditure, here are some of the most common additions and renovations that can be undertaken. 

Proper insulation

One of the easiest ways to help reduce your energy output while retaining a comfortable atmosphere for living is to ensure you're installing insulation into your home. This works by adding another layer between the interior of your home and the exterior, trapping heat or keeping it at bay during summer. Putting this in the walls, floor and roof can mediate temperature and keep things comfortable, removing the need for excessive use of heaters and other appliances. 

If you want to take the environmental aspect to a new level, consider using glass fibre batts insulation in your home. They're made from 80 per cent recycled material, allowing you to further contribute towards waste reduction and work with the growing movement of reducing, reusing and recycling happening across Australia. 

Property orientation

If reducing your overall energy expenditure is your main goal, take the seasons into consideration. For example, in summer the searing heat of the sun can make your home stuffy and insufferable. This often means turning on air conditioners and trying to cool down the core temperature of your real estate. However, if you're constructing your own property, you have the power to reduce the incidence of summer heat. 

One way to do this is to keep your property orientation in mind. If you have windows facing the sun throughout the day, this will naturally heat your property during summer. However, planting trees in front of your windows will help provide shade, blocking the brunt of the sunlight and aiding cool down. The added benefit of this is that during winter when the trees lose their leaves, the sunlight will be able to shine through and warm your home. 

Energy efficient fixtures

Finally, utilising energy saving light bulbs and power outlet fixtures is an easy way of reducing the amount of power you use. Furthermore, investigating sensor lights that automatically turn off when the room is empty could also be a brilliant idea. 

Small things like this can make a huge difference when trying to increase your home's sustainability and reduce the carbon footprint you and your family create.

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