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Gift Efficiency This Year: How to Boost the Comfort of Your Home (Affordably)

With the holidays just around the corner, maybe you fall into the 60% of United States consumers who got an early start on their shopping, beginning between the months of September and November. If you’re not in this boat, however, no need to fret — according to a 2023 Gallup poll, 20% of shoppers reported waiting until December to shift into holiday-shopping mode. 

Whether your gifts have already been purchased, wrapped, and placed underneath the tree, or you’re waiting until the last minute to shop the holiday sales, consider investing in your home this year by gifting efficiency — a present that will last long after the holidays have ended.

The National Energy Improvement Fund (NEIF) is a U.S. Department of Energy Home Improvement Expert Lender partner and Certified B Corp whose organizational mission is to make energy efficiency an affordable reality for home and business owners alike.

While maybe not the most “glamorous” gifts to wake up to Christmas morning, upgrades and other devices that improve home efficiency can result in savings of up to 30% on utility bills. And as a homeowner, is there really anything more attractive than having to pay less each month?

NEIF partners with almost 1,700 quality contractors nationwide who are authorized to offer fixed-rate, low monthly payment financing for qualifying home improvement projects. Additionally, NEIF has formed relationships with utilities, manufacturers, and green energy funds in the industry to deploy and combine capital, bringing affordable financing to the forefront for customers.

Items to Consider For Your List(s):

  • Smart Thermostats
    Although smart thermostats vary in price range, all models operate with the same goal in mind: regulate your home’s HVAC system while maintaining a comfortable interior temperature. This article on Sealed’s website explains how these devices connect to Wi-Fi and can ultimately be controlled via smartphone, tablet, or computer. The neat part, though, is that overtime, they pick up on user preference and your home’s pattern to save energy. 


  • LED Lights for Home Fixtures
    Generally speaking, light bulbs are not created equally. LED bulbs come in a variet6y of color temperatures (denoted by its Kelvin rating), watts, and even “smart” capabilities that include color-changing features, dimming features, etc.  Not to mention that residential LED bulbs use at least 75% less energy than traditional bulbs, and became the new U.S. standard for lighting, courtesy of legislation that took effect in August of this year.

    When it comes to types of LED lighting, the rule of thumb is: opt for warmer hues in bedrooms, for wall lights, and for your living room, and cooler whites for bathrooms, offices, and other workspaces. Click here to learn about NEIF’s financing options — and eligible projects — for homeowners. 


  • Cozy Area Rugs
    Placing area rugs in and around your home (especially if your floors aren’t carpeted) adds more than just ambience, but helps to insulate and further warm a space. Some flooring types, such as tile, hardwood, and concrete, allow heat to escape more easily and can feel cooler to the touch. In these cases, rugs serve as an added level of insulation and comfort.

    Drafts can also present themselves in flooring, meaning that there might be gaps and/or fissures that allow cool outdoor air inside. In more serious cases, air leakage issues should be addressed by an expert to help stabilize indoor air temperatures, further reducing your home’s energy usage. Find an NEIF-Approved Contractor today. 


  • Home Improvement Projects
    Don’t wait until you’re in a pinch to consider upgrading the efficiency of your home! It’s never too early to reassess the needs of your home, as well as your family, and determine any improvements that might significantly improve quality of life and monthly savings. And the best part of financing with NEIF for projects that qualify? Affordability remains a top priority even after the holiday sales and shopping windows have passed. Learn more about NEIF’s mission of empowering customers to Go Greener, Affordably here.


Happy (energy efficiency) shopping — and happy holidays from NEIF!