There’s nothing more anti-climactic than receiving your hard-earned paycheck at the end of the month and having to immediately use it to pay off your household bills.
Although not paying your bills isn’t an option, there are still steps you can take to help shrink your monthly expenses.
Here are 8 of our top tips for doing just that:
Use LED Light Bulbs
Although LED light bulbs cost more than regular incandescent light bulbs upfront, the savings they offer in the long run make them well worth the price.
To put things into perspective, the cost of keeping an incandescent lightbulb on for the span of 20 years (assuming it’ll even last that long) will cost about US$211, whereas the estimated cost of keeping an LED light on for the same duration would cost only US$34.
LED light bulbs use less power, can last longer, and will end up being the easiest way to reduce your electricity bill dramatically.
Get Motion Sensors
Now that you’ve swapped out your light bulbs at home with energy-saving ones, the next best thing you can do to cut down your household expenses would be to install motion sensors.
Motion sensors let you turn on your lights when they detect motion in the room. Otherwise, they’ll stay turned off to save power.
Motion sensors work great with porch lights and other areas of the house where you don’t typically spend much time, such as your backyard, hallways and entrances.
Install Smart Strips
With the added benefit of doubling as a surge protector for all your home appliances, a smart power strip helps to eliminate phantom energy — power consumed by appliances that are off but still plugged in.
Examples: Your microwave, TV and kitchen appliances, which you tend to leave plugged in, even when they’re not being used.
Pro saver tip: Did you know that your microwave consumes more energy powering its digital clock than it does to heat up your food? That’s because your microwave spends most of its day displaying the time than actually heating up your food.
Use A Programmable Thermostat
Just like your lights, your thermostat wastes a lot of energy trying to cool your house in places that don’t always need cooling.
An easy fix: Use a programmable thermostat which can help you save up to 33% on your annual cooling (or heating) expenses.
Products like the Ecobee4 are smart thermostats that can be controlled from your smartphone, and some even come with built-in smart speakers so that you can adjust the temperature with your voice.
The beauty of smart systems like the Ecobee4 is that they can monitor and track the temperature of your house so that they can be more energy-efficient and ‘learn’ when the best time is to power on and power off are.
Insulate Your House
While automating your thermostat may be a good way to cut down on your heating or cooling costs, you can maximize their use by keeping your home well insulated.
Good insulation can effectively help your house retain its existing temperature. So if you’re using a heater to warm your house, a well-insulated home will help retain the heat indoors without dissipating it.
Aside from coating your walls with insulation foam or padding, some simple tricks to make your space even more insulated would be by adding thick curtains to your windows, blocking the gaps underneath doors where there are drafts, and covering up places where the air is able to escape.
Shop For Your Groceries Online
Having trouble with impulsive buys at the supermarket?
Out of sight, out of mind goes the saying, which is why if you’re easily tempted to buy stuff you don’t need when they’re within reach, it’s best to keep them out of physical reach.
To help keep your monthly grocery bill lean (along with your waistline), try ordering your weekly food and household items online and picking them up later so that you can avoid browsing the isles and impulsively buying something that isn’t on your grocery list.
Even better, have your weekly stash delivered to your doorstep.
Meal Prep Regularly And Freeze Your Leftovers
Meal prepping is another effective (and healthy) way to help keep your bills on the low end.
Besides being better for your wallet, they’re also healthier, making it a worthwhile habit to nurture.
Buying your meal ingredients in bulk, prepping and cooking them in batches, as well as dividing up your portions for future meals will help you save on expensive meals out, which can typically cost three to four times the cost of cooking at home.
Turn Off The Heat-Dry Setting On Your Dishwasher
Dishwashers may help us save time in the kitchen, but fail terribly when it comes to the energy-usage department.
If you can’t live without your dishwasher, try turning of its heat-dry setting or simply turn the dishwasher off after its wash cycle to let the dishes air dry instead.
It’ll take a little longer for your dishes to dry, but your bank account will be a lot happier for it.
So if you’re running on a tight budget and need some extra ways to cut down on costs, try some of these tricks that will help you shave off a couple of extra dollars on your next bill.
On the other hand, if you’re looking for ways to cut down on the time you spend doing your chores, then feel free to check out our other post on 8 products that will help take the pain out of doing your household chores.