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Money Talks | Energy costs are climbing

How can you save money on heating your home when things just keep getting more and more expensive?

TEMPLE, Texas — On previous money talks segments, I’ve recommended that you go to powertochoose.org to find deals on electricity for where you live. Well, when you go there now, the days of finding 6,7, or 8 cents per kilowatt plans have been replaced by 14, 15 and 16 cent per kilowatt contracts. 

Things have gotten noticeably more expensive and it's another sector of the economy that is hitting consumers as part of inflation. 

So how can you lower that electric bill? 

I don't know about you, but I used to get very large electric bills in the summer here in Texas. Now every month seems to be what those summer bills were. So, it's time to cut back on your heating and cooling expenses. 

Certified Financial Planner Neil Vannoy has some ideas, telling 6 News, "Lowering your thermostat a degree or two will lead to lower heating bills without making your home feel much colder. Experts estimate that each degree you reduce the thermostat can lead to 3-5% reduction in your heating bill."

And if you're not home and are going to be traveling, Neil advises that you prepare your house each time to save money saying, "If you're traveling, take a few steps to reduce your energy use while you're away. By (1) lowering the temperature in your home several degrees, (2) lowering the temperature of your hot water heater, and (3) unplugging any unnecessary electronic devices you can save money while you're gone."

And maybe you are like me and my wife, as empty nesters, every room in your house is no longer in use. Neil says, "Closing the vents in rooms you don't use can help you reduce your heating costs, but don't forget to keep those doors closed to keep hot air from going into those areas."

And if you have a slightly older home, apartment or duplex, escaping air is your enemy. Neil told 6 News, "Check for drafts around windows and doors. Adding insulation around windows and doors is a cheap and quick way to reduce your energy use."

Remember electric heat, nationwide, tends to be more expensive than heating with gas. But regardless of what you are using, household energy bills have gone up by 54% since April of 2022 as we've been hit hard during this inflationary period.

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