2. Get smarter bulbs.
Switching five of your home's most heavily used lights from traditional incandescent bulbs to Energy Star–certified CFLs, LEDs, or halogens can cut energy use by up to 80 percent and save the average household $75 annually. These newer types also last up to 25 times longer than standard bulbs. Using a smart-home system to intelligently control your lights can save you even more money.
3. Seal drafts.
Does your home have adequate insulation? If not, it's costing you extra on your utility bills. Hire a professional to crawl into your attic and check. A pro can also find drafts around doors and windows and suggest needed repairs. (If you live in California's Alameda or Contra Costa Counties, AAA House Manager can help with this.)
4. Unplug vampires.
"Vampire appliances"—those that draw power even when they aren't in use—can account for more than 20 percent of home electricity consumption. Chief culprits may include your TV, stereo system, cable box, game console, laptop, printer, microwave, toaster oven, coffeemaker, and blow-dryer. The solution: Unplug them when they're not in use. To simplify things, plug them into power strips with on/off switches.