For those starting out on their home-energy-upgrade projects, here’s some pointers from my experience. I completed my first year for my home energy-upgrade project: 5 LED bulbs and a small 2.8kW solar system on my home. At the time of my purchase, I did follow a ‘whole-house’ approach: to reduce my home consumption first, and then added sufficient solar to cover most of my electric usage.
Also I decided to purchase the system vs. finance it, as the net cost after tax benefit was well under $10k for my home.
I had been promised $700 in electric bill savings and the reality is that I saved only ~$550 this year. Investigating further, I found that the solar system did generate above expectation so far (partly because of more sun this year in CA), but my home energy consumption was well above forecast (e.g. second TV at home, more charging devices).
So an important lesson learnt when it comes to home energy-upgrade investments: it is AS important to have a home energy management platform, AS it is to have good product and high-quality service providers.
In a way, its similar to your 401k portfolio tracker – if you are putting thousands of dollars in home energy investment to work for you, its important for you to keep track of your decisions! Just like you watch your money in your investment accounts…