Ways to Save Money on Utilities
As a renter, what are some of the ways to save on your utility payments?
Renting has some great peaks over homeownership. You don’t need to worry about keeping those lawns green, or fixing the broken heater in the bathroom. The moment something goes wrong, you only need to ring your landlord and everything will be taken care of.
Consequently, it also means less control over your home environment. However, when it comes to savings, there are always aspects you can focus on to reduce some of your living expenses. This includes your energy utility costs.
We have compiled some tips that experts recommend for utility savings.
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Consider energy-saving lighting
You may not be aware of this but certain types of lightings save more energy than others. One of the most efficient and affordable is a fluorescent light bulb which can cut about 70 to 90 percent less energy compared to conventional incandescent lighting. It can also save you around $30 and $80 per set up.
Other types such as halogen incandescents and light-emitting diodes (LEDs) are also great choices. Head over to your local hardware store and inquire further on energy saving choices. Although some of these choices may cost more than traditional lightings, you save more during their lifetime because they use less energy. They also require lesser time to replace.
You may also look at lightings with controls such as timers and photocells which save electricity by turning them off when they are not in use. Dimmers can be used to lower light levels.
Consider using a programmable thermostat
Due to our busy schedules, it is easy to forget to turn off our home thermostats even when we’re not at home or are not using them. If you are paying for your own electricity costs, you might want to consider asking your landlord to have one installed for this purpose. This way, you can sync the stat to the times that you are at home. If, however, your landlord will not allow you to install the device, you may look for a compromise, such as setting reminders or alarms in your phone to help you remember when to drop the temperature or turn off the cooling system altogether if you’re going to be out of the time for some time.
Optimize window use
You don’t have to let your heater or cooling system do all the work by itself. During the winter, keep the blinds open to let the sun heat your room. This is not full substitute for your heating system but it will definitely off load the work. You may also use temporary plastic window films to block the wind and prevent the room from getting too cold especially during particularly chilly winters.
During the summer season, you can ensure the efficiency of your cooling system but keeping your windows closed and blinds shut.
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Invest in low-flow fixtures
Studies have shown that low-flow fixtures allow around 25 to 60 percent savings in your water usage. Ask your landlord if you can swap the built-in features with your preferred fixtures.
Practice efficient use of appliances
Although you cannot program these typical home devices, you can make a habit out of using them efficiently. Simple habits such as using cold water when doing your laundry, cleaning the lint trap in your clothes dryer, or letting your clothes air dry can go a long way in helping you cut off a good chunk of your utility cost.
Unplug electronics that are not in use
Even if you are not using a device, they still consume a certain amount of energy if they are plugged to the power outlet. Check your devices and see to it that they are unplugged. Optimize your use of power strips to make power management easier to do.