Have you noticed that it’s getting more and more difficult to stretch your dollar because the price of various commodities keep rising? You experience this first hand every time you fill up at the gas station or do your grocery shopping. To top it off, you have bills to pay each month — utility bills, credit cards, mortgage or rent, car loan, etc. And you and your family need to eat too, so a good chunk of your monthly income goes towards your food expenses. You can’t help but wonder, then, how you can ever save money.
You can’t not pay your utility bills (unless you don’t mind not having hot water, electricity, water, a phone and a TV) and food is something you need to spend on, whether you like it or not. However, there are things you can do to lower your fixed expenses, starting with your utility bills. Here are 5 ways you can lower your utility bills an save some of your hard-earned money:
Tip #1: Do you have your television running all day? Do you keep your lights on even when no one is in the room? Are your appliances running even when you’re not using them? Perhaps you have your thermostat turned on all day. If you do, it’s not surprising that your utility bills are as high as they are! A very simple and common sense solution is to turn off appliances when you’re not using them. If you’re not going to be in a room for more than 15 minutes, don’t leave it with the lights on. During the day, open up the curtains instead to let natural light in instead of turning on the light. There’s no sense to keep the TV on if you aren’t watching. And if no one’s going to be in the house, why set the thermostat on all day? Try these simple things and you’ll see your electricity bill go down.
Tip #2: Your electricity bills may be high because you aren’t using energy-saving lights and energy-efficient appliances. Start with the lights. There are energy-saving light bulbs available that don’t use up a lot of power but are much brighter than incandescent and fluorescent bulbs. They’re longer lasting too. If you have old appliances like refrigerators or ovens, they may not be energy efficient. It may save you more money in the long run by buying newer ones. If you can’t afford to buy a new appliance, make sure the old one is in good running condition.
Tip #3: Leaky pipes can balloon your monthly water bill. Have your water pipes checked to make sure that there are no leaks and that old pipes that need replacement a replaced right away. Check the faucets in the house too, as well as the toilet tanks.
Tip #4: Put Technology to Good Use
How is your phone bill? If you often make long distance or overseas calls, this may very well jack up your phone bill. There are phone companies now that offer unlimited free long distance calls for a fixed monthly fee. See if you can switch to this type of phone service. Another option is you can take advantage of the Internet to communicate with friends and family. Use e-mail, online chat rooms and instant messaging to communicate every day and reserve the long distance and overseas calls for emergency and special occasions.
Tip #5: You can save energy, as well lower your electric and heating bills by having your home properly insulated. During the cold months, heat won’t quickly escape your home, which means you won’t need to use your heater as much. Likewise, during the summer months, your home won’t get hot inside quickly.