I was gently complaining to the neighbor across the street about my grossly expensive utility bill. She is so nice, almost motherly in fact. My neighbor listened as I went on about how I needed to figure out how to lower my energy costs. Normally, she is the sort who placates and smiles. But this time, it was different. My neighbor suggested I sync up my HVAC. I nodded while explaining how I thought a new smart thermostat would help. She smiled again but shook her head. Her idea of syncing the HVAC went far deeper. The idea is to bring together all the elements of a house with the HVAC system in mind. First, secure the envelope. This is a fancy way of saying seal all the cracks, windows and doors to keep the treated air in. And while we’re sealing she said the next target was to close all the gaps in the duct system. A house can lose up to 30 percent of treated air through leaky ducts. Next, she suggested I pay some attention to the attic. I need to seal around the perimeter and make sure I have plenty of R 60 insulation. I could now see what she meant by syncing the HVAC and my house. Wow, I had not expected this response but, she is so right. If I’m gonna cry about the utility bill, then I better be prepared to do what I have to do to correct it. After I got into syncing the house with my HVAC, I felt a bunch better about the prospect of cutting a chunk off the electric bill. Realistically, I am planning on something in the neighborhood of a 15 percent savings on my next utility bill.