This post is brought to you by ComEd.
It’s finally summer – which also means that many Chicagoans are considering their upcoming leases and deciding on their next move (quite literally). As most of us know, moving to a new home can be a pretty big ordeal, so we Chicagoans do our best to keep things as simple as possible by moving in the warmer months. While it’s been a handful of years since we moved into our home, we’ve always made sure to plan our timing for summer moves to help maintain our own sanity.
Even with all the planning in the world, moving can still be stressful and costly. ComEd, our local electricity provider in Northern Illinois, is looking to make things easier and help its customers leverage offerings through their energy efficiency program. Whether moving in or out, ComEd customers can take advantage of various programs, discounts and rebates specific to new movers. These initiatives can be hugely helpful to both buyers and sellers; sellers want to get the highest return on their investment by raising the home’s selling price and buyers want to get the most value out of their new home. These energy efficiency programs are here to help in both scenarios!
Although we have no plans to move any time soon, you know that we’re in the early stages of a pretty big renovation over at our new two flat. Just as we’ve done for our current home (and even our garden apartment renovation!), we intend to take advantage of every single one of these programs as we make progress on that project. So today, we want to share with you 5 available rebates that you can take advantage of right now to save money while improving your home. Step by step, each of these items can have a massive impact on your energy consumption and your wallet. It’s really a win for all!
Note: If you don’t live in the Chicagoland area with ComEd as your service provider, don’t fret! This website contains an interactive map to help locate similar programs in your area.
1| Smart Thermostat Rebates
Smart thermostats are a pretty amazing invention – perhaps one we didn’t realize we valued until we invested in them for our own home. They add convenience and energy efficiency to any home, and with annual energy savings of up to $145, they could pay for themselves in less than two years. That’s a great return on an investment! Additionally, ComEd customers can save $75 on a smart thermostat, meaning the cost of the device could be fully recouped in just over a year. $75! We’ve utilized these rebates three times for our own home- one for the HVAC system on each level, as well as the garden apartment! When we made that upgrade for our tenants last year, they noticed an immediate decrease in energy costs, and they made sure to let us know through an enthusiastic text exchange.
2| Heating & Cooling Rebates
On top of upgrading to a smart thermostat, ComEd also offers rebates up to $600(!) when energy efficient heating and cooling systems are installed by an Energy Efficiency Service Provider. Upgraded modern heating and cooling systems boost energy efficiency to save money and there’s even an easy online tool to help find a service provider in your area. We took advantage of this program when we upgraded to a 2 stage furnace and added central air conditioning to our home last spring. It was a large expense, but it was offset in a significant way by the big rebate.
3| Appliance Rebates
Beyond thermostats and HVAC equipment, ComEd also offers various rebates on your appliances. Essentially, it works like this: ComEd will come to your home and recycle your old, working refrigerator or freezer for free and send you $50. Meanwhile, you could save up to $110 per year on energy costs! Then, if you purchase a new ENERGY STAR® certified appliance, you could get another $50 rebate! Overall, you can save on both purchase price and operating costs when upgrading to ENERGY STAR certified appliances. We’ve cashed in on these rebate programs multiple times for new appliances and even recycled the garden unit refrigerator during the renovation a few years ago!
4| LED Bulbs at Certified Retailers
LED bulbs have come a loooong way. Color temperature options are plentiful, dimmable bulbs are readily available and the lifetime energy savings from each bulb has never been higher. If you’ve not yet made the switch to LED bulbs throughout your home, now is the time. In addition to the cost and environmental benefits, ComEd also provides instant discounts on energy-efficient home products like LED lights and bulbs at select retailers. They want you to save money and energy!
Coupling the energy savings and significant decrease in bulb replacement, switching to LED bulbs could have lifetime savings of up to $123. Multiply that by the number of bulbs in a home and thousands of dollars in lifetime savings are easily attainable. Not to mention, you may never have to change a bulb again – and if you ask us, that’s reason enough to make the switch. (We’ve yet to change a single LED bulb in our home since we’ve been replacing them over the last few years!)
5| Weatherization Rebates
Last (but certainly not least) of the bunch are ComEd’s weatherization rebates. These improvements – think: attic insulation, air sealing and wall insulation – are intended to be felt as opposed to seen since they’re mostly contained inside the walls of a home. Weatherization upgrades help homeowners stay comfortable all year round and save money now with instant discounts for upgrades. You can get ComEd’s weatherization rebates, up to $1,600 in instant discounts from ComEd and your natural gas company for qualifying projects when you use a ComEd Energy Efficiency Service Provider.
Individually or coupled together, these programs can help customers enhance the value of their homes, and lower energy bills – all while being energy efficient! – with the potential to save thousands of dollars in the process. We can’t stress enough how incredible these opportunities are for homeowners and renters alike. When ComEd asked us to partner up and spread the word, we couldn’t agree fast enough!
If you call Chicagoland home, be sure to take advantage of these free programs. If you live elsewhere, check with your local utility provider to see if they offer similar programs and rebates (they probably do!). And if we all make small, incremental changes in our energy use, we can make a huge impact – and hold on to our hard-earned money at the same time.
ComEd Energy Efficiency Program offerings subject to change.