They say money doesn\’t grow on trees, but a tree can definitely add value to your property (and put a few extra dollars in your pocket if you aren\’t planning on selling). Not only do buyers love great landscaping (we can\’t say more about the importance of curb appeal) but there are so many benefits to planting a tree (or several), you should be asking yourself why you haven\’t done so already!
A shade tree does more than provide a cool spot to sit in the middle of summer. It can also reduce your annual heating and cooling costs.
According to Ryerson University research following 577 Ontario homes, trees saved homeowners about 77,000 kWh in energy over a 10-year period. Per tree, the savings are equal to the amount of electricity needed to run an average Canadian home for about a week, with benefits increasing over time as trees grow larger. You can use the Ontario Residential Tree Benefits Estimator to get a more custom estimate of energy savings for your home.
If planting a sapling it can take anywhere between 5 and 7 years for it to reach maturity and the size needed to provide that measure of shade for your home, but it\’s worth the wait.
The Center for Urban Forest Research says that a new tree planted on the western side of your home will reduce your energy bill by about 3 percent in five years, and by close to 12 per cent in 15 per cent. And trees planted on the north and northwest sides of your home can block cold winter winds and lower your heating bill.
Covetable Curb Appeal
A property that features healthy, mature trees can easily earn an extra 5 per cent on top of the asking price. A well-maintained tree in the front or back yard offers shade, a home for wildlife, a place for children to play, can improve the quality of the air and add beauty and interest. In general, a tree delivers a healthy return on investment in exchange for relatively low maintenance.
As you can see, the benefits of including a tree in your landscaping plans are clear, but the key is to plan before you plant – the wrong type of tree can actually cause the value of your home to decrease by as much as 50 per cent. Ideally, you want to opt for a slower growing tree, such as oak, offers the most value as they provide more shade and tend to stay healthy longer.
It\’s hard to know what will be right for you, but many online resources, like www.treescanada.com, offer invaluable tips and advice on choosing the right tree, where to plant, and how to care for them so you can benefit from them for years to come.