The Energy Detective (TED) – is invaluable… you may need an electrician to install the monitors into your fuse panel, but it is worth it.. $600 for our total install – paid for itself in the first year.
If you have solar panels – you can combine TED with the awersome PVoutput website to see how much you are using and generating:
First step? Buy a $100 remote meter reader – you can do it yourself and quickly see how much your house and certain things are using..
Clamp on the remote reader onto any standard electric meter (see the black thing in the lower left?)
… and then you will have the portable instant readout like this:
The Black & Decker does not seem to be available anymore, but here is a similar unit: