Do You Even Know if You Need an Energy Assessment? Part 1

Wednesday, August 16th, 2017 by Joy Padgett

This is Part 1 in our series discussing the reasons why you should have a Home Comfort Assessment conducted on your home.

Like I said last week, once upon a time I had never heard of such a thing let alone had any clue as to if I needed to have one conducted on my own home. What I did know was that I received an electric bill every month and it seemed like too much money!

So, if you haven’t guessed already, the first issue on our list from last week is a High Utility Bill. Receiving a high bill is like a wake-up call to a lot of people. It makes people start questioning what’s going on to create such an outrageously high bill.

 Man just cannot believe it

We all know that utility companies are always trying to raise their rates and often petition the commission to do so. (Wow! I kinda feel like Dr. Seuss after that phrase!) With rates always on the rise, intelligent people are becoming more and more interested in how to save money and cut their cost of living. BUT, what many people don’t know is how to reduce their utility bill costs. You can’t control the rates; you can’t remove your meter. Maybe you’ve set your thermostat on 74 for the summer and haven’t been using your stove. But, should you really have to live in an uncomfortable house? Surely there’s another way to reduce your electric bill.

Well, there is. One of the first steps is to have an energy analysis of your home. A home energy assessment identifies where and how your home is losing energy. Most utility companies today will identify which systems/components in your home are working inefficiently and recommend solutions. However, they stop right there. What good is a list of suggested solutions if you can’t do the work yourself? And how many people out there can actually complete the items on their list anyway? Not many, but that’s okay. To make matters worse, most utility companies don’t know who to refer their own customers to in order to have the actual work completed. Their reasoning? They can’t “endorse” anyone. Now, I’m not saying they should actually endorse another company, but what would be the harm in compiling a list of service contractors? To be fair, some of the smaller electric companies in Central Kentucky do have a list of contractors. I found that refreshing…a utility company that actually seems to care.

Other utility companies provide an insight into how your energy consumption compares to other houses in your area. It comes in the form of a graph or a report, or maybe a newsletter. This feature can be helpful in determining if you could really use an assessment, especially if you see you’re using 30% more energy than your neighbor!

Ladies….would you rather give more money to your utility companies or go buy that Michael Kors purse you’ve been eyeing at the mall? Guys….how about you? Purses aren’t your thing? Well, how about that new curved HD flat-screen TV? Now that’s what I’m talking about! There are better things to spend your money on!

Man holding fan of money 

The next step is to find a contractor who can actually do the items on your list. A service professional, like the one I work for, can take the report from the utility company or conduct another assessment, show you the recommended solutions, give you an estimate on fixing the problem AND schedule an appointment to actually fix your house! My company isn’t going to leave you with a list of things YOU can do to improve the comfort levels and energy efficiency of your home, but rather will provide an estimate for completing the recommended measures for you! You can't get a better deal than this!

Plus, it never hurts to have another set of eyes inspect your home. It can be easy to overlook something because nobody is perfect. Another look, especially if it has taken you months to find a contractor, can detect things that may have developed or changed since the utility company did an assessment.

Another benefit to having a service professional come out and take a look is that he/she can tell you about the actual products that are recommended and what options you may have. After all, there is more than 1 kind of insulation! If you were to choose the company I work for, you can greatly reduce the number of contractors you’re going to have to deal with to get all the work completed. Since we don’t just do insulation, but provide air sealing, insulation extraction, duct sealing and insulating, and attic and crawlspace repairs and upgrades, most of the items we see on utility company assessments are things we can address and take care of!

Wouldn't you rather keep more of your money than give it to your utility company? It all begins with a very simple, very thorough, analysis of your home.....or business!

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