Save Energy and Money at Home

Help the environment and save money by making your home and habits more energy efficient.

Building, Buying, or Renting an Energy-Efficient Home

When it comes to saving money on your energy bills, mortgage, and taxes, choosing a home that’s already energy-efficient can help.

  • Learn about home energy scores and whole house energy-efficient design.
  • Consider Energy Star certified homes. They have many energy-saving features and benefits. Use the builder and incentives locator to find Energy Star builders in your state.
  • Verify that the house’s heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) system was installed by an Energy Star certified contractor.
  • When you are looking for rental housing, consider renting an Energy Star certified apartment or condo.
  • Learn about energy efficient mortgages. They give borrowers the opportunity to finance cost-effective, energy-saving measures as part of a single mortgage and allow borrowers to qualify for a larger loan amount.
  • Many states offer tax incentives and financing to encourage energy-efficient housing.

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Making Energy-Efficient Home Improvements

Energy-efficient home improvements can make your home more comfortable while saving you energy and money. It may also increase the value of your home.

Improving your home’s energy efficiency could take many forms:

If you are thinking about ways to improve your home’s energy efficiency:

  • Do a home energy audit that allows you to assess how much energy your home uses and compares your home with similar homes across the country.
  • This energy tool walks you through setting up a home profile and provides recommendations on ways to save energy. It also allows you to track your progress.
  • Depending on the project, you may choose to do it yourself or find a contractor. Before you select someone to do the work, read these tips for hiring a contractor.
  • Don’t forget about the outside. You can use landscaping to boost your home’s energy efficiency.
  • Find out what federal or state tax credits and incentives and financing you may be able to get for improving your home’s energy efficiency.

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Electricity and the Smart Grid

Electricity is a form of energy that produces heat, light, and power. Electricity is produced in power plants and carried to your home via the electric power grid. The U.S. electric power grid has evolved into three large interconnected systems that move electricity around the country through transmission and distribution lines.

Smart Grid

To make the power grid function more efficiently, the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 provided funds to improve it. There are numerous ongoing projects dedicated to upgrading the U.S. power grid into a smart grid that:

  • Incorporates digital technology into the traditional electrical system, which enables better information flow between utilities and customers on the grid
  • Makes the grid more reliable and efficient by helping utilities reduce electricity losses and detect and fix problems more quickly
  • Can help consumers conserve energy, especially at times when demand reaches significantly high levels

To learn more about efforts to improve America's electricity system, visit the Office of Electricity Delivery and Energy Reliability.

For information on interstate transmission of electricity and hydroelectric power project proposals, visit the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC).

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Buying Energy-Efficient Products

Before you make a major purchase of appliances or other electronic devices, consider the costs of using those products and the impact on your electric bills:

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Last Updated: April 12, 2017

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