There are two ways to save more of your income: Make more or spend less. While making more money often requires big life changes, spending less can be achieved in a lot of creative ways. Consider your household utility bills. On average, homeowners spend about 11% of their budget on gas, water, sewer, and electricity. So what positive steps can you take to lower those utility bills and effortlessly save yourself a little cash?
The apex ideal for smart lawn irrigation is a programmable irrigation system that shuts off automatically when it senses rain. But you can still conserve water (and save on your water bill) by using sprinklers, so long as you use them wisely.
- Pay Attention To The Rain. If you get about an inch of rain in a week, skip your next watering.
- Time Of Day Matters. Water your lawn in the morning or late evening to reduce the amount of loss due to evaporation.
- Consider Soaker Hoses. Soaker hoses are lined with small holes to deliver moisture directly to the grass roots. They use less water to achieve the same results as sprinklers and can be kept in place around garden beds or on narrow lawns.
- Water Deeply But Not Often. Watering well but infrequently encourages deeper root growth, which makes for a hardier, more drought-resistant lawn.
Audit Your Appliances
If you’re in the market for new appliances, don’t forget to consider the long-term energy costs of running your preferred model. Check the EPA’s Energy Star label to compare different options.
Even if you’re not in the market for updated dishwashers and “smart” washing machines, you can still save in utility costs with savvy use.
- Check with your power company for the hours of non-peak rate discounts, then plan to run your dishwasher, dryer, and washing machine during those hours.
- Set your appliance controls to wash dishes and clothes with cold water rather than hot.
- Scrape, rather than rinse, your dirty dishes before loading them into the dishwasher.
Turn Down The Heat
You don’t have to shiver during the winter and sweat all summer in order to save on your gas and electric bill, which is responsible for a large chunk of your utility costs.
A programmable thermostat can lower your energy usage by adjusting the temperature according to your needs. If your home is empty while you’re working, there’s no need to keep it at a breezy seventy degrees in the height of summer. You can program it to kick on an hour before you get home, so you’ll still get the cooling benefits.
Finally, make sure you maintain your appliances and HVAC system as required. Changing the air filters in your HVAC system twice a year can make a difference in how much energy it pulls. Similarly, a once-a-year vacuuming of your refrigerator coils improves condenser efficiency. A little attention can go a long way to putting some extra cash in your pocket.