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Energy Efficient Home Improvements Are Good Retirement Investments


Why Energy Efficient Home Improvements Are Good Retirement Investments

As more and more baby boomers reach retirement age in the United States, many are left wondering what are good investments to make in preparation of retirement. Most individuals and families nearing retirement age already know the most publicized ways to invest, with investments such as Roth IRAs, stocks with high dividend yields, paying off home mortgages or refinancing into lower fixed rate mortgages, and other safe financial investments.  We all see the commercials saying invest in this fund, invest in this commodity, yet sometimes we fail to see the best investment right in front of us, our home.

While regular home maintenance is essential to all homeowners, complete remodels are often done to improve appearance and curb appeal to homes.  While completely remodeling a home may not be the best investment for homeowners reaching retirement age or on a fixed income, some home improvements can not be avoided, often making a remodel a sound financial investment. Some of these essential home improvements include roofing, painting, insulation, HVAC systems, and hot water heater replacements.  While roofing and painting can improve the overall appearance of the home they also maintain protection against the elements.  Insulation, plumbing, and HVAC repairs are essential to quality of life and improving energy efficiency of the home.  Either way, most of these repairs and maintenance projects are unavoidable, so the intention of this article is to make sound investments into your home that can help retirees and fixed income families save big money over the long term.  With rising energy prices and improvements in products such as paint, roofing materials, and hot water heaters; home improvement can be a wise investment for those reaching retirement age.

If you are a homeowner considering improving your home, or in need of a home repair, investing into a "green" energy saving building product could save you a lot of money in retirement.  Investing a little more money into a more durable, energy efficient product; homeowners can lower utility bills, leading to more money for food, travel, and family outings during retirement. 

Being in the energy efficient home improvement business, we have done energy efficient home improvements for hundreds of customers with the intention of saving money, however a recent customer brought to our attention that they were treating these investments in their home, as part of their overall plan for retirement   After going into further detail, the homeowners explained to us that they were trying to lower their utility and maintenance cost while still working, so that they would have more expendable money on a fixed income during retirement.  Here are some of the products and services we provided to the customer and reasoning the customer gave us for going with a better and more energy efficient product, while incurring just a slightly higher cost of material in the short run.

  1. Installing a Metal Roofing System - While metal roofs run slightly higher in cost then traditional shingle roofing systems, the customer knew that by going with metal roofing, this would be the last roof they ever had to install on their home.  In addition to being the last roof, the customer is going to have a lot less maintenance cost with metal vs. shingle roofing.
  2. Re-insulating the home - While the customer had a well insulated home with fiberglass insulation, their insulation was beginning to sag and lose R-value. The selling point of using spray foam insulation was its better R-value rating, and also the durability of the product that will last the life of the home, far outliving any human being that may occupy the home now or in the future.
  3. Upgrading the HVAC system - While the customer had the proper duct work and other hardware related to heating and cooling the home, the customer was making a unit switch to a better Energy Star rated heating and cooling unit, that will result in energy savings that will offset the cost of upgrading the unit.
  4. Installing a Solar Panel Hot Water heater - depending on whether you have a gas or electric hot water heater, this is usually number 2 on the list of appliances that use the most energy in the home.  By eliminating this cost all together, the homeowner will save big money in the long term by not having this major appliance pulling on the gas or electric bill.
  5. Installing a Energy Monitoring System - while energy monitoring systems are limited in the savings on energy they can create, they are often inexpensive and a good way to tell if your major appliances are reaching the end of their life expectancy. While some appliances may still work properly, the older they get the more energy they start to use to run at maximum efficiency.  By being able to identify appliances that are going bad or getting old, the customer can maximize the life of their current appliances, while being able to replace inefficient appliances with newer appliances with better energy star ratings. They will save money both with replacement cost and energy cost.
  6. Lifetime Paint on the Exterior of the Home - while we at MBS & Co. do not sell or install lifetime painting services, we have noticed an increase in the use of these services by homeowners that we have done work for.  Painting is necessary usually about every 7-10 years using traditional paint products, however these lifetime paint products offer a great advantage to those reaching retirement age.
As you can see from the improvements this customer made, their are a lot of ways to prepare your home for retirement.  While still working, this customer has developed a plan to lower home maintenance and home energy cost in the future, by making improvements that will show big savings in the long run and all throughout retirement.  In addition, the products and materials these customers are using will also reduce home maintenance cost in the long run as well.  While we sell a lot of our products on just energy savings alone, retirement planning is just another added benefit of making more energy efficient home improvements, that has been brought to our attention.  We all know that saving money leads to a more financially stable future for anybody. 

If your a homeowner in the North Carolina or South Carolina area looking to make energy efficient home improvements to your home, then please contact us using the information below:

MBS & Company
530 Piedmont Ave.
Myrtle Beach, SC 29577
Phone: 706-951-0158

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