One of the most common priorities when it comes to home construction or renovations today is the ability to reduce energy usage and conserve valuable natural resources. This can have many upsides for the individual property owner, while also of course benefiting the environment overall.
There are a wide variety of advantages for people who build or own energy efficient homes. These properties tend to be more comfortable, with temperature stability inside the living areas. Depending on the types of materials used to establish the energy efficient state, the home may also be well-protected against leaks, drafts, the elements and exterior noise.
However, the primary benefits of energy efficient properties—and the factors that are generally the main motivations for people to choose energy-saving materials and building tactics—usually boil down to financial issues.
With so many costs and household expenses going up at a fast pace, it is understandable that property owners are eager to find any possible solutions to help them save money when maintaining their home or business. Of course, the most obvious source of savings would be in the form of the reduced utility bills made possible by lower energy consumption. These building tactics can also help property owners avoid the costs involved with leaks and damage caused by storms.
But there are also some other financial upsides to energy efficiency that many people may not realize. One important example: there are special, very attractive financing options that are specifically geared towards energy efficient building or improvements. These programs can be a huge help for people who want to buy an energy efficient property or make energy-saving improvements to their current property.
One of the most popular financing resources is energy mortgages. Energy mortgages offer favorable financing terms or loan savings based on anticipated energy savings. There are two types of energy mortgages: an energy improvement mortgage involves an existing property, while an energy efficient mortgage is generally related to new construction. These energy efficient mortgages allow the person to borrow more money (at more attractive terms) than they might be able to otherwise. The VA and FHA are among several government agencies and national organizations that offer energy mortgage programs.
AFC First is a national lender that runs the EnergyLoan program, along with other financing programs and initiatives designed to help homeowners finance improvement projects involving energy-saving elements.
For business owners that want to buy or renovate properties with energy savings in mind, the U.S. Small Business Administration offers a number of programs to help with access to the capital needed to finance these building purchases or improvements.
Many states including Pennsylvania, North Carolina and Georgia have lending programs for residents who want to buy an energy efficient property or make energy-saving renovations to their current home. Municipalities and other regional or specifically-targeted organizations often also sponsor or oversee lending programs that reward or promote energy efficient building strategies or upgrades. For example, Renovate America sponsors the HERO program that provides special financing for owners or builders of energy efficient properties in California. Utility companies also have lending or assistance programs that help homeowners make energy-saving upgrades to their residences.
In addition, there are a variety of rebate programs and tax incentives that may be available from the federal or state government, depending on the location of the property and types of improvements involved.
While many of these programs are designed for property owners, there are also a number of programs (both national and regional) that provide lending and other financial incentives to help contractors or builders create jobs that support energy efficient building.
One of the most popular energy efficient building materials is spray foam. This can be used in interior or exterior walls, within ceilings or to reinforce the roofing surface. The incredible difference in energy usage and the resulting boost to the budget that spray foam can help property owners realize is well-known. As a result of this incredible energy savings, upgrades such as the application of spray foam can often quickly pay for themselves. But the initial project still requires an upfront investment, which is where these lending programs can be such a big help. The sooner the properties can be renovated for efficiency purposes, the sooner the owners can start seeing the benefits to their monthly budget.
Contractors who want to help their customers to qualify for these special energy efficient lending programs need high-quality spray foam equipment—which they can find at Intech Equipment & Supply.