Are you having trouble paying for exorbitant energy bills? The Energy Information Administration (EIA) reports that average monthly utility bills run as high as $95.66. Many Americans, however, are paying high amounts unnecessarily. With relatively simple energy fixes, Americans can shave hundreds off annual energy — and sometimes even have the government reimburse them for household improvements! Here’s what to do:
First and foremost, homeowners and residents need to understand how homes are wasting energy. An energy audit, or a professional assessment, pinpoints areas for improvement. Areas that are responsible for lost heat or inefficient heat transfer, such as poorly insulated doors and windows, are some of the top culprits. Consumers can ask electric utility suppliers to recommend a professional to audit their homes. Local weatherization and energy offices can also refer energy audit service professionals.
Choose Energy Efficient Solutions
Homeowners can save money on electricity by making small adjustments to their homes. Simple faucet aerators, for example, cost $10 to $20 each, according to the U.S. Department of Energy. Moreover, the same fixtures may reduce household energy consumption by 25% to 60%. Similarly, consumers should carefully compare electricity providers. Switching to clean or green energy may offer permanent energy-savings. Consumers can use free online tools for unbiased electricity providers comparison.
Get Your Money Back
The government offers incentives for green or clean energy services. Consumers can receive credits for fuel cells, solar water heating, solar-electric systems, geothermal heat pumps, and wind-energy systems. Homeowners can claim up to 30% of relevant expenses. The government will revisit legislation to credit the purchase of energy-efficient home equipment (originally approved for 2011-2013).
There are three simple steps to paying less on energy bills. Start with an energy audit, proceed by making improvements to your home (and using online tools to compare electricity providers), and finish by getting money back for your efforts.