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A home electrification plan will help you save money while remodeling your home — here's how

There are all kinds of efficient, energy-saving upgrades you can make.

There are all kinds of efficient, energy-saving upgrades you can make.

Photo Credit: iStock

When it comes to electrifying your home, there are all kinds of efficient, energy-saving upgrades you can make, from upgrading your electrical panel, to installing better insulation, to simply replacing older appliances

So where should you start? One of the best places to begin is with a home electrification plan.

What is a home electrification plan?

Your home electrification plan lays out the upgrades you want to make to your home and the order you should make them in to get the biggest benefit. It will help you plan for the future and avoid the need for emergency repairs and replacements.

Start by taking a home inventory using a checklist (here's a great example). This will give you an idea of what appliances you own, their ages and fuel types, and which are most in need of replacement.

Next, take stock of your electrical panel. A typical home needs at least 100-amp service and space for new circuits in order to go electric. You may even need to upgrade to 200-amp service, so check what you have. You may be able to pre-wire your panel for all the upgrades you plan to make.

Third, schedule an energy audit. This will allow an expert to assess your home and tell you where your heating and cooling energy is going. It will identify problem areas that are most in need of work, such as poor insulation, ducts in need of maintenance, appliances reaching the end of their life, and other efficiency problems.

From there, reach out to experts for estimates on the jobs you want to have done. Don't schedule the work yet, but get the information you need to make spending decisions and figure out which jobs should get done first.

Finally, you can lay out a plan for improving your home! It doesn't need to happen all at once; instead, plot out a schedule that works with your lifestyle and budget.

How will having a plan save me money?

Taking electrification steps out of order might mean you miss opportunities, waste effort, or have to redo earlier projects. For example, if you upgrade your electrical panel once, and then find that your new appliances are still too much for the new equipment, you'll have to pay again for a second upgrade.

If you have a plan in place from the start, you can avoid costly mistakes because you already know what you'll need to take into account.

How do I decide what needs attention first?

There are some projects that will depend on having a few basic upgrades finished first. For example, if you want to install an EV charging station, you definitely need to sort out your electrical panel first.

After that, though, your schedule depends on your personal priorities. If you want to improve your health by addressing your air quality, getting rid of gas appliances is an urgent project. 

If you want to save money and strongly reduce your impact on the environment, you might want to install solar panels, upgrade your car to an EV, or replace your HVAC system with a heat pump.

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