3 Green Home Improvements That Don’t Pay Off

The home improvement industry has come a long way in producing products and technology that make homes energy efficient and environmentally friendly; home owners are making conscious choices to select green home enhancements.  As a whole, a noticeable mind shift has taken place.  Take for example, the term “upcycling”.  The word was relatively unknown a decade ago and now it is a never-ending screen when you search for boards with this name on Pinterest.   Despite all the strides that have been made, there are still some green home improvements that do not pay off from a financial or functionality standpoint for the time being.  Here’s our list.

Solar Panels – On paper, “going off the grid” and producing your own energy sounds like a good thing.  But there are some things to note prior to signing on the dotted line.  It’s important to understand that application of solar panels can void your roof’s warranty because of the added weight, additional heat on your roof and an increased likelihood of leaking.  If the lifespan of the roof and solar panels do not coincide with each other, you can be forced to remove one prematurely which wastes money.  Furthermore, because of the cost of installation, it can take years before a homeowner breaks even; this is worth noting especially if you do not plan on being in your home for decades.  The minimal amount of homes utilizing the sun as a power source demonstrates that demand is low.  At this point in time, solar panels take a backseat to features such as school district, bed/bath count and luxury kitchens for homebuyers in almost all cases.

Vegetated Roofing Systems- This type of roof is covered in a waterproofing layer with vegetation planted on top of it.  Homeowners who install these roofs aim to insulate their roofs and purify the air surrounding their homes.  Vegetated roofing systems cost more to install than conventional types and like any garden must be routinely weeded and cared for to ensure the plants’ survival.  In addition to attracting sunlight, they can also attract mosquitoes and other unwanted pests.  If the roof starts to leak, the diagnostic process can be tedious because the waterproofing membrane is located beneath the soil.  When opting for this roofing system, plan on staying in your home indefinitely, as this home trait will likely send prospective buyers packing.

Waterless Urinals- Invented in the 1990s, waterless urinals have been seen as a more viable option in recent years because traditional urinals utilize 1-5 gallons per flush.  Seems like a win, right?  Not exactly…sealant and removable cartridges that serve as traps need to be replaced frequently and the fact that only 50% of the population can use them also cuts into their functionality.  Lastly, a lot homes use copper pipes and when used in conjunction with a waterless urinal, leaking pipes can occur because uric acid will eventually eat away at the copper piping.

Lindus Construction / Midwest LeafGuard is a full service contractor specializing in LeafGuard Gutters, GAF Asphalt Roofing, SeasonGuard Windows/Siding/Insulation, Metal Roofing, Decking, New Construction & Home Remodeling. Call us at 1-800-873-1451 or check us out on the web at http://lindusconstruction.com.  Tune into WCCO 830 every Saturday at 9am for our Home Improvement Show with Denny Long & Andy Lindus.