Shocked woman at home checking expensive electricity and household bills, home finance concept

If you are anything like me bill paying is something you get over with as quickly as possible each month. I’ll take a look at my credit card bills to make sure the charges look right, but I’ll go long periods without looking at some of the others. However, since we are getting ready leave the city and buy a new home we have made it a priority to have more money in the bank, I started to eyeball the other bills to see if there aren’t more ways we can save.

Our energy bill wasn’t the obvious choice, after a spike when we had our first born when we seemed to have the washer dryer and dishwasher going non-stop it seemed pretty reasonable. But while I was on PG&E paying my bill I decided to click on a link that offered to do PG&E’s Home Energy Checkup.  It was super easy and free! Unlike some forms or questionnaires that seem like they’ll be a breeze, for this one, there was nothing to look up or research. I’m sure I was done in less than five minutes.

I started by answering what kind of home we live in.

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I answered whether we heated our home in the winter and also answered whether we cooled our home and how.

2016-10-24-12-21-26I covered what kind of major appliances we had and things like how often we used our dishwasher and heated our water.

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The whole Home Energy Checkup questionnaire couldn’t have taken more than a few minutes. Once I was done, I got an easy to read report that spelled out how much of my home energy use went towards heating, hot water, appliances, lighting and other uses while giving you a list of personalized suggestions on how you can boost your home’s energy efficiency.

After I took a look at the breakdown of our energy use I also got a list of personalized recommendations on how we could boost our home’s energy efficiency. It surprised me to see how much ENERGY STAR appliances and more efficient lightbulbs could help us save. As I looked around my house after I noted that our fridge and air conditioner were ENERGY STAR appliances but many others were not.

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It was also a good reminder about small steps we can take like turning off lights when we leave a room and making sure we don’t run our air conditioning unnecessarily. As we look at houses to buy, especially those that need some work, I love knowing I can turn to PG&E for another Home Energy Checkup to help guide some of the renovating we’ll need to do. Even as I answered the questions, it prompted me to rethink the kinds of fixes we might need to do to some of these houses. One house, in particular, seemed awfully drafty. Many of the homes needed an upgrade to the appliances. When we make choices those will all be ENERGY STAR.

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Now, I not only have a tool to help reduce my current energy bill but a tool that I can use to keep the savings and efficiency going as we move into a new home. Got five minutes to spare? Why not check out PG&E’s Home Energy Checkup for yourself?

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of PG&E. The opinions and text are all mine.