Every year, I field all kinds of questions from homeowners who want to know how they can save money on their heating and cooling bills. I can’t blame them. Because of my line of work, I love HVAC systems more than the average bear, but I’d still rather spend my hard-earned bucks on more exciting things than utility costs.
The best way to save big on heating and cooling bills, I tell folks, is to invest in a whole-home approach to energy efficiency. Essentially, this means that you incorporate several strategies at once to maximize your home’s efficiency and make sure conditioned air stays inside your home, rather than seeping out. This helps your furnace or AC burn less energy while still comfortably heating or cooling your home.
The top priorities that I always recommend investing in are smart thermostats, attic insulation, and, first and foremost, energy efficient windows. A lot of folks kind of balk at this because, let’s face it, getting new windows is a big investment in and of itself. At this point, a natural question seems to be, “Can I get help to pay for new windows in California?” Fortunately, I’m here to tell you the answer is yes, you can get help paying for new energy-efficient windows to be installed in your California home.
For the sake of helping you save some big bucks (and conserving energy, of course), I’m going to fill you in on the best kind of windows for a whole-home energy approach—and the ways you can get some significant financial help for the upfront costs of paying for them to be installed.
Double Pane Windows for Energy Efficiency
In my experience, people are always a little skeptical when I tell them that double pane windows are the key to slashing their monthly energy bill; it’s hard to understand how a few panes of glass could save you much money until you know how double pane windows work.
Double pane windows lower your energy bill by making life a whole lot easier for your furnace, AC, and entire HVAC system. The gas-filled cavity between the panes effectively reduces the transfer of heat through the pane. This means that your air conditioner and furnace don’t have to constantly compensate for fluctuating temperatures in your home caused by drafts from rickety single pane windows. In fact, double pane windows do such an amazing job at regulating the internal temperature of a home that they can actually save you roughly $340 a year (if not more) on heating and cooling costs.
…double pane windows do such an amazing job at regulating the internal temperature of a home that they can actually save you roughly $340 a year (if not more) on heating and cooling costs.
Of course, aside from energy efficiency, there are other amazing advantages of double pane windows, including, but not limited to, noise reduction, blocking the sun’s ultraviolet rays, and increasing the value of your home. When I say they are a great investment, I really mean it!
California’s Options for Paying for New Windows
The truth of the matter is, double pane windows don’t come cheap, and cost can be a huge deterrent—especially for those who are looking to save money rather than spend it. But, like I mentioned above, it is possible to get help paying for them.
HERO offers 25-year fixed-rate terms and typically allow homeowners to borrow up to 15% of the total value of their home.
For most folks in Northern California, Hero Energy Efficiency Financing (HERO) offers help paying for upfront costs of energy efficient home upgrades, such as installing double pane windows. In some cases, HERO will actually cover 100% of the cost of a homeowner’s energy efficient upgrades. They offer 25-year fixed-rate terms and typically allow homeowners to borrow up to 15% of the total value of their home. Sounds pretty great, right? The only catch is that qualifying for financing can be a bit cumbersome, so I recommend that you get help with the paperwork. I work with my clients on their HERO applications all the time and I’m sure that most professional window installation companies would do the same—just ask!
SMUD offers rebates for energy efficient home upgrades, including double pane windows.
If you live in Sacramento, be sure to also check out Sacramento Municipality Utility District (SMUD) residential energy efficiency loan program. Essentially, they offer rebates for energy efficient home upgrades, including double pane windows. Of course, there are other great financing options available to folks here in Northern California as well, so be sure to chat with your local window installation company about your options.
Perhaps the best part about investing in energy efficient double pane windows, aside from the savings and the great financing options available, is the fact that you are also investing in the future of our planet. After all, our environment depends on us conserving energy and reducing harmful emissions. And if each one of us does our part, we can make huge progress together.
At Bell Brothers, our trained window installation professionals would be delighted to help you make your home more energy efficient by installing double pane windows—or s smart thermostat. Contact us today to schedule a free consultation.
Wondering how to finance new windows—or even a furnace or plumbing upgrade? HERO is a unique financing option that helps California homeowners afford energy efficient upgrades to their home. Contact Bell Brothers, a HERO-approved contractor, to learn more. Our local HVAC, plumbing, and window specialists will walk you through the entire process, from applications to installation.
Image courtesy Unsplash user Olu Eletu