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10 Homeowner Tips for Going Green

Going green illustration of houseWe all know the importance of environmental stewardship. But what are some important rules for those of us who own our homes? Just follow these simple homeowner tips for going green:
1. Replace old appliances 
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) says that if just 10 homeowners replaced their older appliances with EnergyStar®-qualified ones, it would be equal to planting 1.7 million new acres of trees.
2. Install and USE your programmable thermostat 
About 6 out of 10 households have programmable thermostats, but few use the automatic function. Maintaining a certain temperature in your home is one of the many ways you can save the planet (and some $$$).
3. Insulate your hot water heater
A simple insulating jacket placed around your hot water heater can help cut down on energy use.
4. Clean your air filters monthly
Remembering to clean your HVAC (heating, ventilation and cooling) air filters monthly can make a big difference.
5. Plant shade
Focus on the east and west facing areas of your home and plant shady trees there to prevent the most brutal heat intrusion during summer months.
6. Install dual-pane energy-efficient windows
If you haven’t already, replace your windows with dual-pane energy-efficient ones, focusing on those that receive the most intense sun exposure first.
7. Wash your dishes after hours
Try and use your heat generating appliances in the cool evenings.
8. Install aerators on faucets 
Especially here in California, drought country, installing aerators on your faucets, toilets and showerheads can cut your annual water consumption by more than half. Aerators can be simply screwed onto the faucet head, creating a non-splashing stream and often delivering a mixture of water and air.
9. Make sure your toilet is a low-flow model
Do you know that toilets installed 15 years ago use more than twice the amount of water than the newer low-flow models?
10. Replace your lightbulbs 
Using the EnergyStar®-rated compact fluorescent light bulbs all over your house can reduce greenhouse gas emissions by one trillion pounds.
I recommend getting an energy audit to find out what else you can do to help our planet. Visit the online resource of home owners and home buyers, the Partnership for Advancing Technology in Housing, for a list of inspectors in your area.
With my more than 20 years in the industry — ranking in the top 1% of Sotheby’s agents nationwide during most of them — I must keep up with the trends for homeowners. Going green is one of my priorities. Please check my website then call me at 805.886.9378 or email me at Cristal@montecito-estate.com for more homeowner tips for going green!

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