If you are thinking about purchasing or building a new home, one of your top priorities should be to ensure that your new home is as energy efficient as possible.

Having an energy-efficient home means you can save on monthly utility costs, qualify for tax incentives, and lower greenhouse gas emissions.

Here are the five energy-efficient must-haves for a new home:

1. Efficient Water Heating System
Accounting for over 15 percent of energy costs, water heating is one of the most significant expenses in any home. It’s also one of the top energy uses in a home as well.

Fortunately, there are several efficient water-heating systems on the market today. At LifeStyle, each of our homes comes with a hybrid heat pump water heater as part of our LifeStyle SunSmart℠ building package. These water heating systems are 60 percent more efficient than a standard electric water heater.

2. Use Energy-Efficient Appliances
This may sound too simple, but only use appliances that are Energy Star® labeled before installing them. When you consider that appliances such as refrigerators, microwaves, and dishwashers are placing a never-ending drain on energy usage by always being plugged in, it makes a huge difference to use energy-efficient versions.

3. Use Proper Sheathing
With a LifeStyle SunSmart℠ home, owners can expect their homes to be built with ZIP® System Exterior Sheathing, a revolutionary sheathing system designed to enhance structural durability, keep moisture out, and reduce air leakage.

4. Use High Efficiency Heating and Cooling Systems
Almost 50 percent of a home’s energy usage is from its heating and cooling system. Therefore no energy-efficient home is truly complete without a highly efficient heating and cooling system.

Heating and cooling systems that will truly minimize energy use will need to be at least 95 percent energy efficient, meaning that only 5 percent of produced energy will be lost. It’s also essential that these systems be installed correctly, or else your home’s efficiency can be reduced by as much as 30 percent.

5. Use Efficient LED Lighting
Installing LED lighting in your home has a plethora of benefits. LEDs can reduce energy waste by as much as 75 percent when compared to traditional incandescent bulbs. Apart from the waste reduction, LED lighting is safer, maintenance-free, smaller in size, and lasts longer than conventional bulbs.

Making Your Home Energy Efficient
LifeStyle Homes’ energy-efficiency tips are crucial if you want to conserve energy throughout your new home. If you are interested in learning more about all the measures taken by LifeStyle Homes to make our customers’ homes as efficient as possible, visit the LifeStyle SunSmart℠ “Behind the Walls” page.