It seems winter just doesn’t want to quit this year! As the colder weather persists in Vancouver, so does the drain on your wallet as we use more electricity to heat our homes. Looking for ways to offset your climbing heating bills?

If you’re thinking of listing your Vancouver house for sale, then we’ve rounded up our top tips to curb your electricity usage and prevent you from pouring more money into it while you wait to sell.


Window + Door Coverings

Keep window coverings closed to avoid heat-loss through windows. Conversely, when the sun decides to arrive for the season, this will keep indoor temperatures regulated and reduce your need for an air conditioner! Storm doors will do the same for doors.

Invest in a little weather-stripping, or a lot in proper insulation. Both will help prevent heat-loss and high energy bills.


Consider replacing your bulbs with LEDs, which use approximately 90% less energy than incandescents. Don’t forget, nightlights count! The high cost of LED lightbulbs can be a deterrent, but long-term they will save you money. Another trick is to install dimmer switches. That way, you’ll only use the amount of light you need.

Your Fridge + Freezer

Stock your fridge and freezer well; food acts as insulation so your refrigerator doesn’t have to work so hard. Also, only store covered food and dishes that have already cooled off so your fridge doesn’t have to do double-duty.

Those Other Appliance Drains

You know all those TVs and accessories, kitchen appliances and computers that glow with the time and other settings? They’re draining your electricity. Consider plugging them into a power strip, then switch it off between uses.

Other ways to stop the drain is to turn off the “Heated Dry” on your dishwasher, only do dish and laundry loads when you have a full load, and always wash laundry on cold. Also, check when your off-peak hours are and only run appliances then for cheaper electric rates.

Hot Water Tanks

Insulate it well and drain it twice per year of sediment to keep it running at top efficiency. If you install a water heater timer so the tank only runs when you need it most, you have the opportunity to see a 5 - 12% reduction in your hot water heater’s energy costs.

If you’ve just bought your dream house on Vancouver’s Westside or are calling the East Side home now, these money-saving tactics will also help you ease into homeowner bliss!


As Vancouver residents deal with one of the snowiest winters in decades, we’ve collected our favourite tips to keep your East Vancouver real estate protected from the unexpected wintery onslaught.

Shovel Early and Often

This is your #1 best bet to keeping your walkways, driveway, drains and landscaping safe and skid-free. As snow compacts, you’ll be facing ice that needs taking care of as well as slushy times ahead.


Slow Down It’s Slippery Out There!

Beware of slush! Whether you’re walking or driving around Mt. Pleasant and beyond, it has the potential to freeze so keep your front walk area free of this hazardous winter by-product. Same goes for Black Ice; this invisible peril is the result of snow melting as temperatures rise, then rapidly drop especially in shaded areas and as the sun goes down. Be aware, and go slow!

Clearing Snow Will Save your Cement

While the City of Vancouver is doing it’s best to clear roads and walkways, doing your part to keep your corner of the neighbourhood relatively snow-free is beneficial to everyone. Not only will you avoid a possible fine, but keeping walkways in front of your home and driveways clear will save the cement they’re made from. Ice can get into fine cracks and as it expands and melts, create craters in the material which will have to be filled in the Spring. So grab a shovel and enjoy the fresh air!

Salt Vs. Sand

Rock Salt lowers the freezing point of water and is traditionally used to keep snow from turning into ice. This mineral form of table salt is a relatively inexpensive and easy-to-get option. However, the salt residue can be harmful to your grass and shrubbery that line the drive and walkways. It can also eat away at concrete and steel over time, which isn’t good news in the long run for your driveway.

Sand on the other hand provides traction at any temperature without physically melting the ice. So if it gets buried by more snow, you’ll have to reapply this option more frequently. Be mindful when shoveling as the sand can clog drains which will be a problem later in the spring rainy season. Sandbox sand is your best bet for size of grain and availability.

Icicles and Ice Dams

Icicles may look lovely, but these frozen daggers pose a serious threat of injury as well as harm to your home. As it gets warmer out, they’ll start to melt and potentially break off; puncturing anything beneath them. They can also create ice dams which could lead to meltwater getting inside your home if there are any air leaks or inadequate insulation.

Share your best snow and ice coping methods with us on Facebook and from your Vancouver real estate experts: Be safe out there!

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