Adulting: here’s how to do it right

Let’s play “You know you’re getting older when…”

Your beloved MP3 player is now considered “vintage.”

An exciting date with your partner means canoodling on the couch in your fuzzy socks rather than hitting the restaurant district in those uncomfortable but oh-so-fashionable shoes.

And you finally understand why your parents insisted on turning down the thermostat when they went to bed at night: they were the ones paying the heating bills.

Ah, to be an adult.

Your priorities have changed, along with your idea of a good time. But that’s okay. It’s even something to celebrate for all the opportunities that await.

Here’s one way to embrace your newfound appreciation of adulthood: switch your home heating to natural gas. It helps you save you money on utility bills so you can spend it on the things that bring you joy — especially being warm and cosy in your home.

Heating with natural gas is one-third the cost of electricity. Not only will your energy bills be lower, but when it’s cold and dark outside, you won’t feel the need to go out to have an enjoyable evening.

The warmth from natural gas feels, well, more natural. Forced-air natural gas furnaces provide comfortable, evenly balanced warmth while natural gas hydronic heating systems use radiant heat to keep you cosy. And who doesn’t want to feel radiant?

The conversion to natural gas doesn’t need to be a daunting project, either. Natural gas room heaters and wall furnaces are compact and economical. Remember when, as one of your first steps towards adulthood, you figured out that Santa doesn’t really need a chimney to do his job? Well, neither do you if you want to enjoy that warm, seasonal glow. The heaters can be installed on most exterior walls. No chimney required.

There’s more.

By reducing your energy usage (and, therefore, your utility bills), you can contribute to a lower-carbon future for BC.

A new ENERGY STAR® natural gas furnace is almost 100 per cent efficient. Here’s the math: when the furnace is installed correctly, for every dollar that you spend on natural gas, between $0.95 and $0.99 is used as heat. Since we’re now a penny-less country, when you round it up that’s a near-perfect system for wise use of our resources.

After you have it installed, you can make sure your natural gas furnace is working as efficiently and safely as possible by having a licensed contractor service it regularly. You can find qualified contractors in the Trade Ally Network Directory here.

Yes, but... (Sigh. Isn’t there always a “Yes, but…” in life?)

When you become an adult, the things you want tend to cost more than the running shoes or concert tickets that you simply had to have when you were younger. You might want to save money by switching to natural gas, but what about the cost?

There’s good news. You can get rebates up to $1,000 on high-efficiency natural gas furnaces and $1,500 for high eligible efficacy space and water heating systems. Here’s how.

And, finally, if becoming an adult means taking pride in your own do-it-yourself skills, here are a few handy things you can do to ensure you’re literally not throwing money out the window.

  • Draftproof your home by applying weatherstripping where exterior doors and windows meet.
  • Look for caulking for windows and doors at the hardware store. You can apply an acrylic/latex interior caulk around windows where the trim meets the wall.
  • Install a connected thermostat that lets you be as cost-smart as your parents without having to hear their voices in your head — “Don’t forget to turn down the heat!” — every time you settle down for the night. BTW, the recommended temperatures are 20° when you’re at home and 17° when you’re sleeping.

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