With everyone feeling the effects of a down economy, it is important for households to find how to save money at home. There are many things that can be done to accomplish this, but the hard part is trying to get focused and then stay on target. There is a desire by many to try to find one fix for getting their household budget under control or to key in on just one area thinking that it will solve all their problems. The real way to accomplish this is to focus on several areas. Each on its own may not be enough to get you to your budget goals. However, if you use several or all of these together you will find your goal attainable. It all boils down to powering down, shopping smarter, and get clean.
When you learn to conserve energy within your house, you not only help the environment, but you help your checkbook as well. If you aren’t using an appliance or piece of equipment, don’t leave it plugged in or turned on. The obvious things are making sure that lights are turned off when you leave a room. Less obvious is unplugging things like your coffee maker or microwave oven or entertainment center. Have these items plugged into a good multi-outlet strip and turn the switch off when they aren’t going to be used for several hours. Have your computer set to turn off after 20 minutes of not being in use. You will see a significant drop in your power bill by being diligent about this.
There are many things that you can do to improve your shopping habits. Not only should you look out for sales, but clip coupons and shop at discount stores. Buy scratch and dent items. Look for items that are being discontinued or put on clearance. Buy used items when you can. Spend money only on the items that you need. Be picky about the price more than you are the label.
There are two things to think about in this area. First, realize that most of your cleaning can be done with only one cleaning product: bleach. Simply add a tablespoon to a gallon of water and you have something that will take care of most messes. To make it a disinfectant, mix one part bleach to nine parts water. Also, be careful not to spill it or use too much and never mix it with ammonia.
Second, clean your vents, registers, and baseboard heaters regularly. Make sure you switch out air filters monthly in the house. This will help keep your air clean, but it will also help keep your heating and air conditioning equipment from running too hard and in better shape helping to cut back on maintenance costs.