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Creative ways to cut your energy costs

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Manage episode 373080039 series 3424497
Innhold levert av Lee Enterprises. Alt podcastinnhold, inkludert episoder, grafikk og podcastbeskrivelser, lastes opp og leveres direkte av Lee Enterprises eller deres podcastplattformpartner. Hvis du tror at noen bruker det opphavsrettsbeskyttede verket ditt uten din tillatelse, kan du følge prosessen skissert her https://no.player.fm/legal.

With record-setting temperatures across the United States, home energy bills are skyrocketing.

On the latest episode of PennyWise, host Nat Cardona talks with Elizabeth Ayoola of NerdWallet about changes people can make to reduce their energy bills.

Read the NerdWallet article here!

About this program

Nat Cardona is host of PennyWise as well as Lee Enterprise's true-crime podcast Late Edition: Crime Beat Chronicles. Lee Enterprises produces many national, regional and sports podcasts. Learn more here.

Episode transcript

Note: The following transcript was created by Adobe Premiere and may contain misspellings and other inaccuracies as it was generated automatically:

Welcome to Pennywise Lee Enterprises podcast. I'm your host, Nat Cardona

It's summer, and pretty much anywhere you go in the US it is hot, just like with anything at this time in the economy. Energy costs are way up, but fear not. We have some steps to share with you to check that your house is working efficiently and ways to take control of your energy bill. Personal finance expert Elizabeth Ayoola joins us today with more on that.

Today we're talking about energy costs and cutting them during the summer. That dreaded bill comes every month. I literally hate seeing the number that pops up. I am very pro air conditioning and I think a lot of Americans feel the same way, especially in these summer months. So we've got about five tips to help us cut our energy costs this summer.

The first one, based off this article was really interesting to me, the idea of your electronics leaking because you obviously wouldn't think of that naturally, you think of pipes bursting and leaking and then that's a real problem. So let's let's jump into that. Taking a baseline of the electronics in your home.

So it is possible for your electronics to leak, Of course. And I am definitely a culprit of leaving everything plugged in and not unplugging things or turning switches off. So it just sometimes requires a change in your daily routine. So if you're used to, again, leaving things plugged in overnight, then you can maybe try before bed, unplugging things and taking things out, turning off all the switches.

And if you have kids at home, of course they could be culprits for that as well, with kids using so much technology. So just have them add that to their nighttime routine in terms of unplugging things and taking them out of the walls as well.

All right. And that just is a perfect segue right into establishing efficient habits. So let's talk about that, especially with your thermostat.

Again, you may want to during the winter months, obviously, you may be using air conditioning as an example. You may tend to use less air conditioning during the winter months. So maybe just consider adjusting for the temperature or the climates that you're in for whatever season you're in so that you can cut costs that way. You can also try to measure how long you have your air conditioning on and compare your bills or whether that be heating in the winter months to see basically how much you can cost by maybe reducing it by 2 hours or, you know, switching between the fan and the air conditioning or the heating at night just to kind of
see what works so well and save dimension to going right off of that is maybe upgrading to a safe thermostats. I still have an old school one in my house so it's it seems to be that's the better way to go though, to save some money.

Yes. So people might be scared by the upfront cost of that at first. But one of the things that you can do is budget for it. So you can go around and do some comparison shopping and see if there are cheaper alternatives that you can do and then save towards it. If it's not a cost that you can kind of do right away.
But remember that you're offsetting the cost long term. So it may seem like, you know, expensive upfront cost, but the change might help you save money long term.

And another thing I wanted to mention is actually I think it depends on what state and what county you're in. At least where I live in Wisconsin, there is a program where they will reimburse you for your upgrade of a smart thermostat, which is a pretty sweet deal. So probably want to check that out wherever you live respectively.

Absolutely. And the same you know, this is kind of jumping off to a kind of different topic, but the same if you want to do solar panels. There's also a tax credit called the federal Residential Solar Energy Credit that homeowners can claim to install panels and help to offset the cost as well. So it's good to do research and see if the government has any incentives. They can kind of help you offset those costs.

Great advice there going right off of that and making small upgrades. So aside from the smart thermostat, there's other things you can do. I'm seeing little house projects like adding or replacing, whether strips.

Yes, absolutely. Another thing you can do is add doors at the bottom and top of your stairs to contain heat or cooling. So that's assuming that you have a two storey house or even a one storey house. Also adding Zealand to Windows and other places that could be leaking heat or cool air like pipes, wiring holes. Baseboards can be an easy way or kind of a low cost way to cut costs as well in terms of energy leaking from your house.

And if you're not sure where the leaks are, because some people may be like, how can I check where they are? You can use an air leak detector as well as the dollar bill technique, which is where you put a dollar bill underneath wherever you think there will be a leak. And if it goes out easily, then you probably have a leak that you need to fix.

Easy enough. I like that one. I'm going to have to do that. Another scary one, perhaps, for for a U.S. customer is maybe taking a look at updating your larger appliances.

That is a scary one. Larger appliances can be extremely expensive to replace and it can be a shock bill. So it's recommended that people put aside what we call a sinking fund, which is a fund where you can save for those kind of larger expenses. So if you're saving for them, for example, throughout the year, then when you do have when it does come time to replace it, if not as much as a financial shock.
Another thing that people can do in that regard is to check when the appliances expire, because also appliances that are close to the expiry date can also consume more energy sometimes as well. So check what the lifespan of your appliance is. And if you know, hey, this has two years left or five years left or one year left on it, then you can plan ahead versus they breaking down and you just having a huge cost on your hands because especially this is summertime and I'm sure unfortunately a lot of people's ACS have broken down this summer and maybe have they kind of looked at what the lifespan of the AC was or done regular maintenance, they wouldn't have had that huge will come when it's so hot, you know.

Good tips for me, Good freaking me out. I'm going, Oh, yeah, my AC is like ten years old, so I've got to think about that. Elizabeth, anything else that you want to add before we part ways on cutting energy costs this summer?

Of course. So negotiating your utility bill, some people might not know that this is something that you can do. But if you live in a state that allows energy choice, the options to choose from various which is options to use from various natural gas and electricity providers, then you might be able to negotiate or compare between providers. You might want to also research other rates for people or rather companies around you that are providing utilities to see if you can use that as leverage to negotiate with your utility company in terms of lowering your bill.
And if you're a loyal customer, that gives you an added advantage as well, because nobody wants to lose a loyal customer, do they? So see if there's anything they can do to kind of help you lower your bill.

All right. It seems like the listeners have a laundry list of things to do to save the money, but all for the good, right?
That's right.

There you go. Well, thank you so much.

Support the show: https://omny.fm/shows/pennywise

See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

  continue reading

71 episoder

Artwork
iconDel
 
Manage episode 373080039 series 3424497
Innhold levert av Lee Enterprises. Alt podcastinnhold, inkludert episoder, grafikk og podcastbeskrivelser, lastes opp og leveres direkte av Lee Enterprises eller deres podcastplattformpartner. Hvis du tror at noen bruker det opphavsrettsbeskyttede verket ditt uten din tillatelse, kan du følge prosessen skissert her https://no.player.fm/legal.

With record-setting temperatures across the United States, home energy bills are skyrocketing.

On the latest episode of PennyWise, host Nat Cardona talks with Elizabeth Ayoola of NerdWallet about changes people can make to reduce their energy bills.

Read the NerdWallet article here!

About this program

Nat Cardona is host of PennyWise as well as Lee Enterprise's true-crime podcast Late Edition: Crime Beat Chronicles. Lee Enterprises produces many national, regional and sports podcasts. Learn more here.

Episode transcript

Note: The following transcript was created by Adobe Premiere and may contain misspellings and other inaccuracies as it was generated automatically:

Welcome to Pennywise Lee Enterprises podcast. I'm your host, Nat Cardona

It's summer, and pretty much anywhere you go in the US it is hot, just like with anything at this time in the economy. Energy costs are way up, but fear not. We have some steps to share with you to check that your house is working efficiently and ways to take control of your energy bill. Personal finance expert Elizabeth Ayoola joins us today with more on that.

Today we're talking about energy costs and cutting them during the summer. That dreaded bill comes every month. I literally hate seeing the number that pops up. I am very pro air conditioning and I think a lot of Americans feel the same way, especially in these summer months. So we've got about five tips to help us cut our energy costs this summer.

The first one, based off this article was really interesting to me, the idea of your electronics leaking because you obviously wouldn't think of that naturally, you think of pipes bursting and leaking and then that's a real problem. So let's let's jump into that. Taking a baseline of the electronics in your home.

So it is possible for your electronics to leak, Of course. And I am definitely a culprit of leaving everything plugged in and not unplugging things or turning switches off. So it just sometimes requires a change in your daily routine. So if you're used to, again, leaving things plugged in overnight, then you can maybe try before bed, unplugging things and taking things out, turning off all the switches.

And if you have kids at home, of course they could be culprits for that as well, with kids using so much technology. So just have them add that to their nighttime routine in terms of unplugging things and taking them out of the walls as well.

All right. And that just is a perfect segue right into establishing efficient habits. So let's talk about that, especially with your thermostat.

Again, you may want to during the winter months, obviously, you may be using air conditioning as an example. You may tend to use less air conditioning during the winter months. So maybe just consider adjusting for the temperature or the climates that you're in for whatever season you're in so that you can cut costs that way. You can also try to measure how long you have your air conditioning on and compare your bills or whether that be heating in the winter months to see basically how much you can cost by maybe reducing it by 2 hours or, you know, switching between the fan and the air conditioning or the heating at night just to kind of
see what works so well and save dimension to going right off of that is maybe upgrading to a safe thermostats. I still have an old school one in my house so it's it seems to be that's the better way to go though, to save some money.

Yes. So people might be scared by the upfront cost of that at first. But one of the things that you can do is budget for it. So you can go around and do some comparison shopping and see if there are cheaper alternatives that you can do and then save towards it. If it's not a cost that you can kind of do right away.
But remember that you're offsetting the cost long term. So it may seem like, you know, expensive upfront cost, but the change might help you save money long term.

And another thing I wanted to mention is actually I think it depends on what state and what county you're in. At least where I live in Wisconsin, there is a program where they will reimburse you for your upgrade of a smart thermostat, which is a pretty sweet deal. So probably want to check that out wherever you live respectively.

Absolutely. And the same you know, this is kind of jumping off to a kind of different topic, but the same if you want to do solar panels. There's also a tax credit called the federal Residential Solar Energy Credit that homeowners can claim to install panels and help to offset the cost as well. So it's good to do research and see if the government has any incentives. They can kind of help you offset those costs.

Great advice there going right off of that and making small upgrades. So aside from the smart thermostat, there's other things you can do. I'm seeing little house projects like adding or replacing, whether strips.

Yes, absolutely. Another thing you can do is add doors at the bottom and top of your stairs to contain heat or cooling. So that's assuming that you have a two storey house or even a one storey house. Also adding Zealand to Windows and other places that could be leaking heat or cool air like pipes, wiring holes. Baseboards can be an easy way or kind of a low cost way to cut costs as well in terms of energy leaking from your house.

And if you're not sure where the leaks are, because some people may be like, how can I check where they are? You can use an air leak detector as well as the dollar bill technique, which is where you put a dollar bill underneath wherever you think there will be a leak. And if it goes out easily, then you probably have a leak that you need to fix.

Easy enough. I like that one. I'm going to have to do that. Another scary one, perhaps, for for a U.S. customer is maybe taking a look at updating your larger appliances.

That is a scary one. Larger appliances can be extremely expensive to replace and it can be a shock bill. So it's recommended that people put aside what we call a sinking fund, which is a fund where you can save for those kind of larger expenses. So if you're saving for them, for example, throughout the year, then when you do have when it does come time to replace it, if not as much as a financial shock.
Another thing that people can do in that regard is to check when the appliances expire, because also appliances that are close to the expiry date can also consume more energy sometimes as well. So check what the lifespan of your appliance is. And if you know, hey, this has two years left or five years left or one year left on it, then you can plan ahead versus they breaking down and you just having a huge cost on your hands because especially this is summertime and I'm sure unfortunately a lot of people's ACS have broken down this summer and maybe have they kind of looked at what the lifespan of the AC was or done regular maintenance, they wouldn't have had that huge will come when it's so hot, you know.

Good tips for me, Good freaking me out. I'm going, Oh, yeah, my AC is like ten years old, so I've got to think about that. Elizabeth, anything else that you want to add before we part ways on cutting energy costs this summer?

Of course. So negotiating your utility bill, some people might not know that this is something that you can do. But if you live in a state that allows energy choice, the options to choose from various which is options to use from various natural gas and electricity providers, then you might be able to negotiate or compare between providers. You might want to also research other rates for people or rather companies around you that are providing utilities to see if you can use that as leverage to negotiate with your utility company in terms of lowering your bill.
And if you're a loyal customer, that gives you an added advantage as well, because nobody wants to lose a loyal customer, do they? So see if there's anything they can do to kind of help you lower your bill.

All right. It seems like the listeners have a laundry list of things to do to save the money, but all for the good, right?
That's right.

There you go. Well, thank you so much.

Support the show: https://omny.fm/shows/pennywise

See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

  continue reading

71 episoder

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