Looking for some money-saving tips to use this fall? Every time of the year is an excellent time to save money. But when it’s fall, you know it is time to get your house energy efficient for winter.
Fall time also means that the end of the year is almost close, which is an excellent time to reflect on finances, find loopholes, and fix them. Even more importantly, you know holidays and festivities are just around the corner. You may want to save some money to gift your loved ones and travel to be with family.
For whatever reason you are saving, these tips would help you pinch a dime and reduce your expenses.
1. Weatherproof Your Home
According to Carbon Switch, weatherproofing your home can save you $200 -$500, depending on where you live.
Besides shaving some money off your utility bills, insulating your home can lower your carbon footprint by 500-1,000 kilograms annually.
Heating and cooling houses cost outrageous amounts of money. Unfortunately, due to uninsulated spaces, a huge chunk of your heating and cooling bills cover wasted energy.
If you want to lower that amount, especially with winter fast approaching, start by weatherproofing your house.
Weatherproofing houses is not all about saving money. While this may be our biggest concern, it goes beyond it, as it would also help make your house more comfortable and cozy. This is because it is easy to regulate temperature in a well-insulated house.
If your house is not insulated, contact local service providers, get quotes, and get the service done.
2. Use Programmable Thermostats
Looking to save between 5% to 15% of your energy costs? Get programmable thermostats installed today. According to the US Department of Energy, installing and using a programmable thermostat alone can cut up to an incredible 15% off your energy bills.
Programmable thermostats automatically lower the temperature settings when you are out or asleep. The automatic regulation of temperature saves you money and can enhance your comfort at home. Besides, you can set it to start heating or cooling your home right before your time to come home. This way, you can always come back to a cozy home.
Programmable thermostats are also great for zoned cooling. If you are looking to stop heating or cooling the entire house when you are just using a single room, a programmable thermostat would be instrumental.
According to Forbes, the total installation cost of programmable thermostats is between $170 and $190, depending on factors such as the brand. This will be an excellent investment, considering it will help cut your energy bills by 15% annually for many years to come.
3. Seal Gaps and Cracks
Having air leaks in your home will not only increase your utility bills. It increases dust, mold, rotting, and bug problems in your house.
Gaps and cracks in your home let out conditioned or heated air. This means your HVAC system must work much more to achieve the set temperature. The overtime escalates your energy bills and wears your HVAC system faster.
Sealing the cracks and gaps will not only help you directly lower your utility bills. It will also help you avoid costs from a worn-out HVAC system.
Explore different options for sealing gaps and cracks to keep conditioned or heated air from escaping. According to the Department of Energy, this can help you lower your energy bills by up to 10%.
4. Install Energy-efficient Lighting
A study by Agopee Interactive revealed that lighting costs up to 6% of total electricity bills. This figure translates to $ 50-$150 per year.
While switching your lights when not in use can help lower this, the best way out is getting energy-saving bulbs.
LED lights use up to 90% less energy than traditional bulbs. Besides, they last 25 times more than regular incandescent bulbs. Think of replacing your current bulbs with such energy-efficient options to save money.
5. Rake and Compost Leaves
Instead of using electric blowers to blow leaves off your yard, use a rake to manually do the job. Raking leaves is a simple home DIY project you can do instead of hiring someone.
By raking leaves off your yard, you can save up to $550; the national average for leaf cleanup stands at 0.
You may then pay $5-$10 for each bag’s disposal. Instead of incurring this cost, create a home compost pit to accelerate the decomposition of the leaves.
You can use the compost manure to grow your homegrown vegetables and fruits and save much more money.
6. Buy In-season Produce
You can still enjoy a wide range of fresh produce in fall. Take advantage of produce that is in season and save money.
Buying out-of-season produce costs a lot of money. They are scarce and likely transported from other countries or regions. Besides, a lot of chemicals go into quickly ripening them and keeping them fresh for distribution. All these contribute to their high cost.
Some of the in-season fall produce you can buy include pears, citrus fruits, pomegranates, cranberries, apples, artichokes, kales, celery, spinach, arugula, sweet potatoes, turnips, pumpkin, carrots and onions.
Avoid the temptation of buying juicy and succulent-looking out-of-season fruits and vegetables; they will cost you so much more.
7. Prepare Homemade Soups
There are so many ways homemade soups can help you save money.
For starters, they can allow you to buy ingredients in bulk and save a lot of money. Many soup recipes use the same base ingredients, such as olive oil, garlic, carrots, celery, and onions. If you buy these essential soup ingredients in bulk, you can prepare numerous different recipes and save money while at it.
Secondly, soups are also a great way to stay warm when the cold starts kicking in. Instead of buying overpriced coffee, use homemade soup to keep your family warm.
They are also a great way to repurpose leftovers and incorporate plant-based recipes into your diet, all of which are budget-friendly.
8. Switch To Warm Clothing Layers
Don’t shift immediately to heating your house when it starts getting colder.
Start by layering clothes using blankets and warm socks to keep warm. According to Shrink That Footprint, the average cost of heating your house for a four-month winter can vary from $517 – $1439, depending on the fuel you use and your location.
You can cut a massive chunk of this cost by delaying the heating.
9. Opt For Energy-efficient Appliances
Energy-efficient appliances cost more money upfront but will save you much more in the long run. For instance, according to Symbium, shifting to energy-efficient appliances can reduce monthly energy bills by 30%.
If you want to replace your old appliances, go for energy-star appliances. They consume 10-50% less energy than their less energy-efficient counterparts. The best appliances for Energy Star appliances include dishwashers, fridges, freezers, clothes washers and dryers, air conditioners, dehumidifiers, and purifiers.
10. Carpool or Use Public Transport
A study by Smart Cities Dive revealed that using public transport over driving your car could save you an average of $793 monthly. What if you stopped using your car for the entire fall…and maybe longer?
Using a car to move around comes with many costs that are never worth it, especially if you can use public transport or carpool.
Stopping car usage would be a minor convenience that would go a long way in saving you money. Plan your schedule around your city’s public transport timetable, or negotiate with friends or family to carpool.
11. Insulate Windows and Doors
While doors and windows are instrumental for ventilation, natural lighting, and accessing the outside world, they can be a source of discomfort and increased energy bills if not well insulated.
Heat loss happens through uninsulated windows and doors in colder months. In warmer months, much heat penetrates into the house through the uninsulated windows and doors.
This means that they keep the house hotter when you want it to be cooler and cooler when you need it to be warmer.
With this happening, your furnace and air conditioner will work longer hours to achieve your comfort level. These long working hours translate to high energy bills and wear and tear rates.
While insulating the rest of your house, do it to your doors and windows, too. It will save you money and keep you more comfortable in your house.
12. Shop End-of-Season Sales
Fall comes with many discount sales that can help you save a lot of money. Plan your shopping around these sales, get the items you need at a discount, and save money.
Take advantage of Black Friday sales from your favorite stores and shop what you need in bulk.
You also want to check out stores offering back-to-school sales to get stationery for the entire school year.
Other end-of-season Fall sales that can help you save money include Halloween, Small Business Saturday(just right after Black Friday), and Veterans Day. You can get your staples at only a fraction of the total cost if you know where to look.
13. Utilize Free Outdoor Activities
Take advantage of September to do some of your favorite outdoor activities that you may not be able to do when winter dawns.
Go hiking, picnic in parks and your yard, go for nature walks, watch local teams play, attend free festivals, go stargazing, watch sunset and sunrises, and go to a public beach.
These free fall activities will not only help you save money. They will help you enjoy them for the last time before it starts freezing out.
14. DIY Home Maintenance and Repairs
House repairs and maintenance services can be costly. For instance, EcoWatch says most bi-annual HVAC maintenance services cost between $75 and $150. On the other hand, plumbing services cost an average of $100.
Doing these and other home maintenance services yourself can save a lot of money.
Learn how to inspect and clean your gutter, fix a leaky faucet, clean your HVAC system, change air filters, test refrigerator door seals, and vacuum your refrigerator condenser coils.
You will save so much money by not having to call professionals.
15. Cancel Unused Subscription Services
So many people keep unwanted and forgotten subscriptions. Many people keep paying for subscriptions they no longer need or use once and forget to cancel.
When paid subscriptions are mentioned, many people quickly think about the streaming services they pay for monthly and easily overlook their other unused subscriptions.
It could be that baking class you paid for but no longer use, the membership to a gym you no longer attend, dating sites, shopping, and music applications.
Review your bank transactions and cancel any recurring expenses you have not used in the past two weeks.
Money Saving Tips for Fall
While saving money is something you should do every other day, fall is a great season to prepare for more savings, considering how much money goes into utility bills in the next season. Take fall as a chance to weatherize your house for an energy-efficient heating season. Take it also as an opportunity to save for the festivities, enjoy outdoor activities you may not get to enjoy in winter, and just an opportunity to save for your financial goals.
The above tips go a long way in helping you save some money, which you can use to fulfill some of your financial plans.
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This article was produced and syndicated by A Dime Saved.