Author Topic: Giving myself a facepunch  (Read 3418 times)

irishbear99

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Giving myself a facepunch
« on: December 17, 2014, 05:48:42 PM »
The past couple years my husband and I have made great strides with getting our financial house in order. We've paid off all of our non-mortgage debt, increased our savings substantially and have trimmed a lot of unecessary expenses from our budget (I'm talking about you, cable and eating out daily).

I've been feeling really good about our progress; however, having recently joined the MMM community, I've come to realize I still need a huge facepunch as there is one item in our budget I have refused to budge on until now - electricity consumption. We live in an area where electricity is costly and it stays warm year-round. On top of that, because of my upbringing (my parents couldn't afford to keep the house comfortable in any season due to their overspending in other, unnecessary areas) I've always insisted on being completely comfortable in my own house. And, I'm a wuss when it comes to heat. Due to all these factors, our electric bill averages $350/month.

[Insert facepunches here.]

Finally, after surrounding myself in the badassidy on this blog and forum, I'm ready to tackle this. To be realistic, I know I won't reach the levels of badassidy many on this forum reach; however, any improvement is good and I'm willing to try. So, that's one of my major financial goals for 2015, to reduce our average electric bill.

Thank you for inspiring my self-facepunch!

domustachesgrowinhouston

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Re: Giving myself a facepunch
« Reply #1 on: December 17, 2014, 05:59:56 PM »
Sounds like a noble goal. I insulated our attic which i figured would help in the winter, but it actually helped quite a bit in the summer as well. We've done things like turning off the AC and saying, we'll turn it on when one of us gets uncomfortable", which was usually much higher than we had it set at initially. MMM also had a pretty good article on acclimating. Good luck. Watch out if you get too zealous though, we actually went a little overboard last summer and had some mildew issues.

This_Is_My_Username

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Re: Giving myself a facepunch
« Reply #2 on: December 17, 2014, 06:41:33 PM »
Quote
Due to all these factors, our electric bill averages $350/month.


on a positive note, this is an excellent opportunity for great things to happen in the future !

Coup

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Re: Giving myself a facepunch
« Reply #3 on: December 19, 2014, 07:24:02 PM »
What's the plan? Enviro changes to your house or suffer in sweat--or a bit of both?

irishbear99

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Re: Giving myself a facepunch
« Reply #4 on: December 20, 2014, 05:43:58 PM »
What's the plan? Enviro changes to your house or suffer in sweat--or a bit of both?

We're going to be more discerning with the ac...increasing the temperature a couple degrees shouldn't lead to suffering in sweat. As we acclimate, we can increase it further. We've also started opening up the house on the nice days, or at least in the mornings and evenings, instead of running the ac. Also, we've started laundering almost everything in cold water. Unfortunately we can't line dry (association rules). We already wash dishes by hand and are good about turning lights off when they're not needed.

I would love to get solar panels for our place. Unfortunately, they have to be approved by the local utility company and AFAIK, they're saying our area is saturated and they're not currently approving new systems.

BooksAreNerdy

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Re: Giving myself a facepunch
« Reply #5 on: December 20, 2014, 06:53:54 PM »
We have cut our electric bill in half for the last 4 months. We set the ac to 81 during the day and opened the windows at night. The ac/heat pump was off for almost all of October and much of November. We are only heating to 64-68, depending on activity level and who is in the house.

We are also hanging all clothes to dry.

The temps might sound extreme to you, but we acclated slowly. Give a little and see how your bill looks.

Low hanging fruit with a $350 bill! Good luck!

merula

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Re: Giving myself a facepunch
« Reply #6 on: December 20, 2014, 07:07:07 PM »
Unfortunately we can't line dry (association rules).

Can you dry your clothes inside? I don't have any outdoor space to dry clothes, so I have a few foldable racks to use inside. It's actually pretty great in winter since it's like a free humidifier.

AustinKat

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Re: Giving myself a facepunch
« Reply #7 on: December 20, 2014, 07:22:07 PM »
Can you have an energy audit done on your house? That would let you know about any huge air leaks, and about places to augment insulation.