Call your energy provider
Many energy providers offer ways to reduce your monthly bill. For example, you could start the conversation by saying, “I’m reviewing my bill and it’s really expensive. What can I do to lower the cost?” Your energy provider might offer a variety of options, including:
- Home improvement rebate programs: If you’re going to improve your home’s air quality, fix uneven temperature spots or make sure your equipment is running efficiently, call your energy provider first. When you talk to your energy provider, you might learn that they offer rebate programs for home improvement projects, like sealing ductwork or installing a high-energy saving HVAC system (Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning). In addition, you can go to the Database of State Initiatives for Renewables and Efficiency’s website, type in your zip code and see what energy-saving programs you might qualify for:
- Energy-saving products: See if your energy provider has an online store where you can get discounts on LED (light emitting diode) lighting products, smart thermostats and more. According to the U.S. Department of Energy2, LED products use 75% less energy and can last 25 times longer than traditional lighting products. In addition, a smart thermostat can save you money by instantly adjusting your cooling and heating when it’s not needed.
- Sign up for energy-saving opportunities: According to the U.S. Department of Energy3, many electric companies offer power management programs that can help reduce energy use during peak times.
- Ask for a home energy report: Some companies offer this report as a way for you to understand and conserve your energy use. The report shows your home’s energy use over time and a comparison to other homes near you. It might also include tips on how to cut back on energy use.
- Budget billing options: Instead of your bills fluctuating month-to-month, a budget billing option allows you to have predictable monthly bills.
Invest in a smart thermostat
Powered by Wi-Fi, a smart thermostat automatically adjusts your home’s temperature for the best performance. For example, a smart thermostat can learn your temperature preferences, establishing a schedule that automatically adjusts when you’re asleep or away. Depending on what brand you buy, it could also diagnose problems when there’s something wrong with your HVAC (Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning) or remind you when to change your air filter. If you’re tech-savvy, you might like controlling the thermostat through your smartphone, tablet or smart speaker. (But you can still control the smart thermostat on your wall — just like how you did with your old thermostat, too.)
Remember to make sure your home’s HVAC (Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning) and electrical systems will work with the smart thermostat before you buy it.
Weatherize your home
The U.S. Department of Energy4 explains that weatherizing your home can help you save money and make your home feel more comfortable. Before you start a project or hire someone, do a home energy audit first. Fixing insulation, moisture control and improving ventilation are the main ways to increase energy savings.
We know that as energy bills rise, your stress levels might, too. If you’re having trouble paying your utility bills, replacing a furnace or making energy improvements, financial help is available through the government’s Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP). Learn more: