Like many of us, you might be thinking about ways to save money at home.
A home sustainability assessment can help you to identify where you can save money through reducing energy and water usage. A number of professional organisations and state government run programs are available.
Ordinarily they involve a qualified assessor visiting your home and conducting a physical inspection of major energy and water systems. It usually only takes an hour or two, at the end of which, you'll receive a comprehensive report outlining the actions you can take and what your expected savings could be.
How to do it now!
Find an assessor
Research energy assessors in your area. The Association of Building Sustainability Assessors has a searchable database of qualified assessors.
Check your preferred assessor’s qualifications and experience. Have a look at some of their previous assessment reports and don’t be afraid to ask questions.
Ask your assessor what sort of things to have ready for the assessment. For example, your energy bills and water usage for the past 12 months as well as any building reports or house plans.
Check if you are eligible for any other rebates and assistance.
Receive your comprehensive report
After a home assessment you should receive a report outlining a range of practical recommendations such as:
Small things you can do that won't cost you a lot of money, like saving water and energy by taking shorter showers.
Cheap solutions like installing water flow regulators and aerators to your taps or showerheads
Bigger investments like installing a rainwater tank or installing a greywater system.
Get into action
With your home sustainability report complete, you can identify which actions will provide the biggest savings and which will not. Many will cost very little to implement while others may require a more significant initial investment. In these cases you may want to think about applying for a Green Loan with a bank or credit union to fund the action.
Apply for a green loan
A growing number of banking institutions are providing ‘green loans’ to their customers to enable home sustainability improvements and support the environment. To apply for a green home, car or personal loan, check out these banking institutions:
Environment NSW is also helping vulnerable households save power and money on their bills. Through the $63 million Home Power Savings Program, 220,000 households will save up to 20 percent a year off their power use and cut carbon pollution. Households can join the program now by calling 1300 662 416 to book a free home power assessment.
Why is this action important?
Many households may baulk or defer initiating practical energy and water saving improvements due to not being aware of what they are and how simple some are to implement. A ‘Green Loan’ allows households to fast track these improvements, cutting your energy and water bills and reducing your household's impact on the environment.
In the face of climate change and environmental health concerns, the Home Sustainability Assessment program assists people to reduce their personal contribution to climate change and therefore help preserve our precious environment.
Improving your home's energy and water efficiency creates a more sustainable environment in which to live. It also produces comfort in the knowledge that you’re doing your best for the environment and cutting your household costs, a nice feeling.