Older homes can be a real challenge when it comes to energy efficiency. You have a choice of starting over with a new house design and building a completely new home, or with making major renovations and extensions to any existing home to make it more efficient. Which way should you go?
Talking to Experts to Increase Your Confidence
The starting point in your decision making process should be talking to experts in creating efficient homes. This will usually mean an architect, engineer, or a qualified draftsman. The lowest cost option usually comes from drafting services staffed by people highly trained in environmental house design. One company which fits that definition is Drafting Concepts Pty Ltd in Brisbane.
When you sit down with the experts discuss your current problems and your long-term dreams. You can be sure they will explain a new home will be the most efficient option, but does that really fit into your hopes and dreams? If would really like to stay in your existing home there are many types of renovations which can be planned to increase the efficiency. A few examples would include:
- Increased Insulation
- Adding Skylights
- Installing More Efficient Heating and Cooling Systems
- Replacing Windows with High Efficiency Windows
- Installing Solar Panels for Hot Water, Electricity, or Heat
- Installing Dual Flush Toilets
If you need more room in your existing home at the same time it is the perfect time to make extensions which can be placed strategically to increase overall efficiency. If the summer sun beats down on a section of your home then placing a highly efficient extension in that area can increase overall home efficiency. This is an item to discuss in depth with Daryl Wood of Drafting Concepts. He can explain options for increasing your existing homes efficiency or a new home design.
Leaving Behind Inefficiency When You Build a New Home
If you are selling your existing home as you plan to build a new home there is something you should highly consider. Offer to sell your existing appliances with your home as an option so you can buy new appliances for your new home.
This is another area of your new home design which can have a major impact on overall efficiency. Higher efficiency refrigerators, freezers, washing machines, and dishwashers will greatly reduce your electrical and water usage. This is important to consider as you work with the drafting services team at Drafting Concepts or another firm since you may need to allow for the proper size openings for your new appliances.
As you do your planning with the drafting services firm make sure you plan the home carefully. Choose lighting systems which are more efficient like fluorescent fixtures in place of incandescent. Choose to have more lighting fixtures with independent switches rather than one higher powered light. This allows you to turn on only the amount of light you need for any situation and reduce your electrical cost.
In both renovations and new home design it is important to use the highest quality insulation possible. Insulation will impact your fuel use more than any other item in your home. Talk to your drafting team about options and have them specify the highest quality possible. It will pay for itself rapidly.
The most important thing to remember when doing an environmental house design, renovation, or extension is partner with a team who understands your needs. The company you choose for your drafting services must understand your goals and be able to provide you plans which work. Drafting Concepts is ready to give you a free environmental house design quotes to see exactly what you should expect.