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7 Tips for Cutting Costs at Home

If one of your resolutions is to save money, here are a few suggestions that could save homeowners and renters more than $300 per month.

  1. Illuminate savings: Replace light bulbs with Energy Star qualified bulbs and save $6 per bulb per year, and nearly $40 over the lifetime of the bulb. (The bulbs are pretty cheap.) This one is small, but small savings add up.
  2. Cut the phone cord: No one needs a land line anymore. (This blogger hasn’t had a traditional phone in five years and has never missed having one.) This one could save an average of $35 per month – more if you make a lot of International calls.Unplugged Cord
  3. Use your kitchen: The average American eats out six times per month, spending an average of $172. Cook at home more.
  4. Ditch cable: Renters pay, on average, $100 per month for cable television. Does anyone really watch television shows when they actually air anyway? Plus, think of all the extra time you’d have. And you can always catch a show or two on Hulu.
  5. Pull the plug: By unplugging appliances and electronics when you are not using them, you can money on energy. Unplugging one fax machine, one monitor, and television can save $70 per year.
  6. Skip the hot water – Do your laundry in cold water instead of hot and shave energy usage by 90%. This can save $72 per year.
  7. Work out in comfort: Skip the gym membership and save, on average, $775 per year. If you need to exercise, take up running or walking.

Readers, do you have any other ideas?

New Gadgets to Monitor Home Power

A new gadget can show you the real-time cost of the electricity used in your home.

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Tips To Reduce Heating Bills

During the winter, most Americans experience low temperatures and an increase in utility bills, especially for the cost of heating their homes. Each year, according to the U.S. Department of Energy, approximately 43 percent of utility costs go toward heating and cooling. With even warm states experiencing an unusually cold winter this year, more Americans are unprepared for the additional costs associated with keeping their house warm. Here are a few ways you can help reduce your Myrtle Beach home heating costs.

  • Use Available Resources. You could save approximately 10 percent a year by purchasing a programmable thermostat which automatically turns down the heat at night or when you are not at home. Try setting your thermostat as low as is comfortable and instead wear warmer clothing, make use of blankets and put flannel sheets on your bed.
  • Insulate to Safeguard Heat. Up to 60 percent of warm air can be lost even before it reaches the register if your ducts are not insulated. The ducts in your attic and crawlspaces should be sealed. Otherwise, both money and energy will be wasted.
  • Clean Filters and Registers. Make sure you clean or replace filters on furnaces as needed. In addition, clean warm-air registers throughout your home, baseboard heaters and Myrtle Beach Heating and Air Conditioning Tipsradiators. Also, double-check they are not blocked by furniture, drapes or any other obstruction.
  • Conserve Warmth for Rooms Used. Close off access to registers in rooms not being uses. If you only use your spare bedroom when guests visit, you can avoid pumping warm air into an under-utilized space.
  • Prevent Heat Loss from the Water Heater. Insulation blankets are not very expensive (typically under $20) and are specifically designed to reduce the loss of heat. Simply wrap the blanket around the hot water heater, especially if you have an unheated basement.
  • Buy Green. If you are in a situation where it’s necessary to install new equipment altogether, make sure to select energy efficient products. They will cost more upfront, but the lifelong costs will be lower, and you will decrease your energy “footprint.”

Have any other tips or suggestions for ways our readers can save on their heating bill? We’d love to hear from you. Just use the “comment” link below to add your tip here. Your email address will never be published on this website.

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