Ways to reduce your energy bill

The average residential electricity bill in the United States is roughly $113 per month - or $1351 a year. Of course, if you live in a place that requires significant air conditioning or heating - and/or in a state with high electricity rates - your actual bill is likely much higher.

Nobody wants to be spending more on power than they need to. Money spent on electric bills means less cash available for other things in life, be it your next vacation or your kid’s college fund.

Luckily, there are several ways to cut your power bill and free up money in your monthly budget. The quickest and easiest is to use Cut My Bill, a free and easy-to-use website, which shows you how you can immediately pay less for electricity.

Let’s look at what your options are.

Ways to reduce your electric bill

There are two main strategies that you can employ for this. The first is to address the supply side of your electricity equation; in simple words, this means paying less for the electricity you consume.

The second is to deal with the demand side of the equation, i.e. your household electricity usage. Doing both together will give you the best results.

#1: Pay less for the electricity you use

The concept is simple: you should be paying the lowest possible rate for the electricity you consume. However, figuring out the best electricity rate plan can be a bit tricky. The lowest rate that applies to you varies depending on your total monthly kWh usage and your usage patterns. Luckily, the Cut My Bill online calculator takes all this information into account and gives you the answer.

Cut My Bill is an innovative new website that analyses your electricity bills and presents you with options on how to pay less. Within minutes of being on the site, you will see how much you can save by changing your electricity rate plan, as well as how much you can save by going solar.

#2: Reduce your household’s electricity demand

The methods below are all effective strategies to reduce your energy usage. Although these methods are harder to implement, doing them in combination with Cut My Bill’s recommendations will result in bigger overall savings:

  1. Changing your family’s usage habits: This means changing the behavior of you and your family to use less energy on a day-to-day basis. You should shut off lights whenever you leave the room. Power down appliances like TVs and computers at the end of the night; leaving them on standby consumes power. Bigger changes that make a difference involve running your air conditioning at a higher temperature and heating at a lower temperature than you currently do.

  2. Switch to energy-efficient appliances and devices: Where possible, purchase electronic items which use less power than standard devices. Again, the easy way to do this is to look for the Energy Star label.

  3. Live in an energy-efficient home: Live in a house that is built to be energy efficient, such as one certified by the EPA’s Energy Star certification program. These homes include a complete thermal enclosure system, high-efficiency heating and cooling equipment, and efficient lighting and appliances.

Adopting these methods can result in substantial savings on your electricity bill. However of the three steps, only changing your energy usage habits can be done relatively quickly.

Switching to energy efficient appliances is realistic, but it only makes sense to do over time as your current equipment breaks down and/or goes obsolete. As for moving into an energy-efficient home, this only makes sense if you are in the market for a new house, and willing to pay the premium for a high tech home.

Option 1 i.e. paying less for electricity, is an easier and cheaper option and can result in quick financial savings. Let’s see how Cut My Bill helps you achieve this goal.

How Cut My Bill works

The Cut My Bill calculator draws on data about utility companies’ rate plans, household usage patterns and local climate conditions. When you enter your basic electricity details you will be shown, free-of-cost and with full protection of your privacy, a very clear breakdown on if, how, and by how much you can reduce your bills.

Cut My Bill will help you achieve all of the following:

1. Find different electricity rate plans

You will see all the options offered by your utility company, including time-of-use plans. This is accompanied by a guide on what the different terms on each plan actually mean, and how the total bills get calculated. This information is extremely useful to the consumer because it cuts through the gobbledygook and makes it easy to understand the different components that comprise the final bill from the utility.

2. See what you would pay under each plan

Based on your usage profile, Cut My Bill will display how much you’d pay per month under each plan. The results are displayed in an easy to read format which allows you to quickly compare each plan and see exactly how much you can save.

3. Calculate how much you would save by installing solar

If you are curious about solar, you can opt to receive a ballpark estimated cost for a residential solar system suitable for you. Cut My Bill uses data about your utility, how much solar panels produce in your area, and federal and state incentives to produce a remarkably detailed forecast of how much money you stand to save over a 25-year period. You will see all of the following information about going solar:

  • Recommended system size for your needs

  • The system’s annual solar output

  • Total savings over 25 years

  • Roof space required

  • Sunny day solar system output, by hour

  • Solar savings by month

  • Utility bill after solar (including the solar loan payment)

  • 25-year cash-flow projection

4. Receive quotes from solar installers near you

You can opt to receive - commitment-free - quotes from solar installers operating in your area. They will assess your residence and your requirements, and recommend a system suitable for your home. You can also discuss any preferences you might have, such as the type of solar panels you would like, or whether something different like the solar shingles or the smartflower is appropriate for your needs.

You can also discuss your preferences with the installer. The quotes will provide a precise estimate of how much the solar system will produce and how much it will cost you per month. By getting multiple quotes, you can compare offers and make sure that you are getting a competitive price.

Cut My Bill - a demonstration

To demonstrate how Cut My Bill works, let’s look at an electricity consumer in San Jose, California, who currently pays $250 a month on electricity. Entering their info on Cut My Bill yields the following results:

Monthly electricity bill (current)

$250

Home type

Single-family home

House size

2,112 sq. ft

Monthly electricity bill after switching plans

$235

Monthly savings from switching plans

$15

Recommended solar system size

8.7 kW-dc

Annual Solar Output

13,903 KWh

25-year savings from solar

$104,226

Monthly electricity bill after solar (utility bill + solar loan payment)**

$146

Month One savings from going solar

$104

**Repayments calculated assuming a home solar system that offsets 100% of usage purchases with a no-money-down loan.

 

As you can see on the table, Cut My Bill offers two options to help the electricity consumer save money.

  1. Switching electricity plans: Simply switching to another electricity plan available with utility could save the customer $15 per month.

  2. Going solar: The customer saves $104 in the very first month of installing solar panels. Over 25 years, they save a massive $104,226! And this is after accounting for repayments on a no-money-down solar loan.

Conclusion

There are two ways to save money on your electricity bills. The first is to reduce your energy usage; this is effective but requires time and effort to achieve. The second is to pay less for the electricity you use, and this is easy to achieve thanks to Cut My Bill.

Cut My Bill will quickly show you how much you can save. Your potential savings will vary based on your unique situation: which utility you use, the incentives provided by your state, and even the weather conditions in your area. Cut My Bill takes all these factors into account, and presents you with options, along with a $$ figure of how much each one will save you. Check out the site to receive a personalized recommendation within just a couple of minutes.