Property Virgins Host Egypt Sherrod On The Best Ways To Cut Your Energy Costs

If you want to cut down your energy costs, it's important to add energy-efficient features to your home. For instance, according to HGTV Property Virgins host Egypt Sherrod, replacing gas appliances with electric ones could save you money, per WMAR 2 News. Sherrod says that we need to start "recognizing that we're moving away from fossil fuels and towards an all-electrically powered home and home appliances." To do this, you should be "aware of products that are out here on the market that will change our lives and put money back in our pocket."

This is important whether you're buying, selling, or owning a house. When buying or owning, energy-efficient features will save you money on utility bills over time, and when selling, these features will make your property more marketable and appealing to buyers. Below, you'll find five of Sherrod's tips on the best ways to reduce your energy costs.

Get a home energy audit

Sherrod recommends getting a home energy audit before making any energy-saving renovations. In her words, "a home energy audit is essentially a thorough inspection of your home, in which a professional inspector examines the efficiency of your appliances and electrical system," per her blog. According to Energy.Gov, an audit will tell you how much energy your home uses and where any problem areas are.

According to Sherrod, "An inspector can pinpoint exactly where your home's energy weak spots are and how much they're costing you in terms of heating and cooling bills every month." In other words, an audit will help you make an informed decision on what to spend your money on now to save you big bucks in the future. This could be especially helpful for those who own older homes that have not been updated; Sherrod says that "many times if the systems of the home have not been converted to more energy-efficient systems, it can cost a fortune to heat and cool [the house]," per Washington Gas.

Look into multi zone systems

According to Modernize, multi-zone heating and cooling systems split your house into different areas where the temperature can be controlled. This has two huge benefits: it gives you control over your home's temperature and saves you money on utilities, as you won't have to heat and cool unused rooms like guest rooms. On her blog, Sherrod recommends that new homeowners get a home with this type of heating and cooling system. She says that "zones are helpful because it allows the homeowner to heat or cool only the areas most used by the occupants, saving tons of money."

Sherrod also recommends a high-efficiency natural gas heating system, per Washington Gas. She says that "natural gas heating is preferred for high-quality heat and reliability." Not only that, but because almost half of a house's energy goes to heating, this is one of the largest ways to reduce energy costs.

Prioritize weatherized homes

When researching potential properties, homebuyers need to prioritize weatherized homes. In her blog, Sherrod says "look for homes that have been weatherized. They should have insulation not only in the walls, but in the attic, flooring, and basement." Sherrod says that up to ⅓ of your heat could be lost through a roof without insulation, per Washington Gas, so this is extremely critical. According to Metro, Sherrod says that insulating your home is like "putting a jacket on your house. You wouldn't go outside in five-degree weather without a coat, and you wouldn't want your house to be sitting there without insulation either."

Additionally, Sherrod recommends checking to see "if any drafts are coming in through the windows or doors. Ideally, they will be properly sealed." In her interview with Washington Gas, Sherrod says that up to 50% of a home's heat can be lost because of drafty windows and doors. Therefore, it's extremely important to check for drafts by putting your hand up against your windows and doors to feel for cool air. If you feel a cold breeze, you'll want to re-install or insulate these areas.

Take care of your water heater

Another way to save money on energy bills is by taking care of your water heater. According to Sherrod in Metro, "once a year, you should completely drain your water heater tank and flush out the sediments. It will save you money on your bill because it will make it more efficient." She also recommends wrapping your water tank in an insulating blanket. 

To improve your quality of life, you could replace your tank with a tankless water heater. According to Sherrod's blog, "tankless water heaters are smart because they save energy by heating water only when needed." You'll never have to worry about running out of hot water while showering again, as they produce hot water whenever needed. Morris Jenkins adds that they can also save space, as there's no tank, and they will most likely last longer without needing a replacement or repair. They also can't cause a large leak, as they don't hold lots of hot water.

Search for a specific logo on appliances

When house hunting or shopping for new appliances, make sure you look for a specific logo: it should say ENERGY STAR. Egypt Sherrod, in her blog, explains that "ENERGY STAR is the trusted, government-backed symbol for energy efficiency. It was established to help customers identify products that reduce greenhouse gas emissions and other pollutants caused by the inefficient use of energy." Additionally, she adds that "On average, [these appliances] use 50% less energy than standard appliances," per Washington Gas.

Black Hills Energy says that ENERGY STAR products help save significant energy worldwide, perform well, and should save you money on your utility bill in a certain amount of time. Additionally, this logo is on a large number of products; Sherrod says that "there are a plethora of them on the market right now," per Washington Gas. Making sure your products have this stamp of energy-saving approval will definitely cut your energy costs.