There has been a lot of attention lately to the home energy management technology arena. Home energy management products range from simple devices like power strips and programmable thermostats which are the most recognizable.  These devices can be remotely or automatically controlled and even more sophisticated home automation systems can be put in place.

With the increase in energy usage and cost there has been a lot of innovation and development taking place. I suspect people are starting to wonder, “Should I install any of these products and what benefit will I get from them if I do? “

The Utilities and energy management industry has been working together to develop a system for the homeowner and businesses to implement programs to get incentives to reduce their energy consumption.

This can be accomplished by simple rebates on the energy management devices to the utilities issuing rebates on Energy Star appliances and credits on your monthly bill from demand conservation.

Presently, a simple form of energy savings for the homeowner would be to replace their incandescent lighting and add a programmable thermostat. With the lighting you have several choices. You can use the CFL style or the new LED’s. The programmable stats have evolved from simple to somewhat sophisticated. They can be easily controlled at the device, through a smartphone app or even a manufacture’s account. Either version works well and is relatively easy to install and operate.  Even if you had not been too diligent with your thermostat in the past you will definitely reduce your heating and cooling cost.

Down the road, many more products will become available, and they will become simple enough for the homeowner to use. Hopefully all of the products will become more cost effective, either by themselves or with rebates or other incentives.

A final thought. As we have said before there are steps for the homeowner to take in the quest to reduce energy usage and cost. It begins with conservation and changing those habits that cause more energy consumptions. Next it pays to ensure that all energy consuming devices in the home, and your home itself are the most energy efficient they can be.