Homeowners Fear Surging Utility Bills This Winter

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As winter takes hold, homeowners brace for the challenge of soaring utility bills. With energy costs on the rise, the National Energy Assistance Directors Association predicts a 17% increase in winter heating expenses. Recent insights from a Payless Power survey highlight the hidden costs of homeownership, emphasizing the need for budget-conscious strategies.

The Overlooked Element of House Hunting: A startling revelation from the survey is that only 47% of homeowners considered potential electricity costs when choosing a new home. This oversight is particularly evident in states like New Hampshire, where residents seek relief from escalating power bills.

Size and Age Impact Utility Costs: The survey underscores the role of home size and age in determining utility expenses. Larger homes, especially those over 3,000 square feet, exhibit energy bills more than double those of smaller counterparts. Additionally, homes built in the 1990s and 2000s tend to have higher monthly energy costs than newer constructions.

Proactive Cost-Cutting Tactics: Despite challenges, homeowners can take proactive steps to mitigate rising utility bills:

  1. Thermostat Management: Lowering the thermostat by a few degrees can lead to substantial savings.

  2. Off-Peak Utilization: Shifting high-energy activities to off-peak times capitalizes on reduced rates offered by many utility providers.

  3. Energy-Efficient Updates: Investing in LED bulbs and Energy Star–rated appliances trims power bills and enhances overall home comfort.

  4. Sealing Drafts: Identifying and sealing drafts with caulk or weatherstripping prevents energy leaks.

Conclusion: As winter utility bills loom, homeowners are urged to prioritize energy efficiency and factor in electricity costs when house hunting. By adopting simple yet effective measures, such as thermostat adjustments and energy-efficient updates, homeowners can navigate the winter months with both comfort and savings in mind.

 

Source: NAR

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