By: Kevin Williams
Categories: Money Savings
Electricity can be a major expense for homeowners, and this will remain to be the case for the foreseeable future. Residential electricity rates have risen nearly 20 percent the past 10 years according to the U.S. Dept. of Energy – Energy Information Administration (EIA), and it forecasts that U.S. residential electricity prices will grow at nearly 3 percent through 2019.
Further complicating matters is the uncertainty surrounding the future of residential energy generation in light of competition between clean and renewable energy sources with traditional energy sources such as coal and natural gas. Regardless, it’s a safe assumption that energy costs will continue to rise.
Besides residential energy costs, the cost of homeownership in general has steadily increased for the past several decades. For instance, the median home value in 1940 was $30,600 when adjusted for modern-day inflation; in 2000, it was $119,600. However, the main issue isn’t merely that homeownership costs are rising, but that they’re outpacing inflation, making it more difficult for people to buy new homes over time.
One solution to rising residential energy costs could be energy storage. Energy storage originally began providing significant benefits and energy cost reductions for the commercial and utility sectors, and in 2017, the commercial and utility energy storage market began to thrive. In 2018, the residential energy storage market began to grow significantly and will likely continue to grow as it begins to make more financial and economic sense for homeowners.
Energy storage by itself can lower electricity bills simply because it allows you to store energy from the grid or renewables to use later when its more cost-effective. Intelligent energy storage goes a step further by integrating with your home’s energy-using devices through internet of things (IoT) technology to serve as the energy hub of your home. It then uses machine learning to decide how and when to use energy most efficiently based on such factors as peak energy pricing, individual homeowner lifestyle, and other considerations. This leads to an additional benefit of added convenience by allowing you to control all your disparate smart home technologies from a single display, such as a smart phone app.
In addition, the costs of intelligent energy storage are falling dramatically. The International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) predicts that total installed costs of energy storage could fall between 50 to 60 percent by 2030. In addition, McKinsey & Company predicts that energy storage costs will drop below $160 per kilowatt hour by 2025.
Thus, Intelligent energy storage could theoretically eliminate a home's electricity bill completely, especially when combined with renewables such as solar power. This could even lead to a profit when the total amount of money homeowners save on electricity bills overtakes that which they spend on the storage system. Furthermore, intelligent energy storage can also lower your home's carbon footprint as your reduced energy usage ultimately results in fewer greenhouse gases released in the atmosphere.
As residential energy costs will continue to go up, energy storage costs will continue to go down. Intelligent energy storage gives you the most value because it allows you to make the best use of your stored energy leading to dramatically reduced energy bills. It can also make your home more environmentally friendly and increase your overall quality of life.