green your home and save $$$

(October 15, 2014 )

Here are 50 ways to green your home and save dollars in Greater Vancouver!

Choosing Where you Live...

1 Green neighborhoods
Buy a home in a neighborhood close to work, transit, shopping, community centres and other services.

2 Transit-oriented density (TOD)
New, compact, complete green neighborhoods are being built with transit as their focus.  Instead of owning a car, join a car share cooperative, take transit, cycle or walk.

3 Lower Cost Luxury
If it's features such as a gym or pool you want, buy a strata unit with these amenities and share costs.

4 Score your location
Walkable neighborhoods offer health, environmental, financial and community benefits.  Enter your address or the address of a home you want to buy at  This tool calculates a walkability score based on the home's proximity to transit, grocery stores, schools and other amenities.

home improvement
Heating and Cooling...

5 You choose, you save
BC Hydro and FortisBC offer a variety of incentives and rebate programs for home upgrades and rebates.

6 Install a high-efficiency heating system
Make sure it's ENERGY STAR rated.

7 Weatherize your home
From windows to doors to insulation and weather stripping.  Don't forget to seal your ducts.

8 Insulate your pipes
It will prevent costly head loss.  Here's how.

9 Insulate your hot water heater
Buyer a pre-cut jacket or blanket for $10-$20.  You'll save up to 10% on heating costs.  Learn more.

10 Install programmable thermostat
Set it lower at night and during the day when you're away.  Lower the temperature.  Each degree below 20C saves you 3-5% on heating costs.

11 Replace your furnace filter
This optimizes performance, as clogged filters reduce airflow, forcing your furnace to work harder.

12 Get the most from your fireplace

13 Use curtains
In the daytime during summer, close to help cool your home.  Learn more.

14 Install ceiling fans
The energy it takes to run a fan is less than an air conditioner.  In summer, make sure the fan's blades are rotating anti-clockwise for a cooling effect.  In winter, the fan should be running clockwise, pushing the warm air down.  Learn more.

15 Use an electric fan
Skip the air conditioning.  On hot summer days, place a bowl of ice in front of a fan to cool down.

16 Fix leaks.  Fix leaking taps
One drop per second equals 7,000 litres of water wasted per year.  Learn more.

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