Save money on utility bills? Yes – it can be done!
For most households, the monthly bills eat up a good portion of the income. It can seem impossible to save money on utility bills at times, but chances are there are a few ways you can save. Even if you only save a little bit here and there, that little bit does add up over time.
So, here are my tips to help you save money on utility bills…
To Save Money on Utility Bills, First Know What You’re Paying For
In order to save money, you need to know exactly how much you’re spending each and every month. Gather your utility bills from the last few months and take a look at the charges and usage for your household. Are there charges you don’t understand? Call the utility company and ask. You may be able to get rid of these charges. Even if you aren’t able to get your bill lowered, you’ll at least know exactly how much you’re spending every month.
Necessity or Not?
Here’s a simple idea – save money on utility bills by getting rid of some of them. This is no new concept. If you haven’t already, get rid of – or at least downgrade – some of your utilities. Two of the most common utilities that come to mind are Internet and phone. If you have a cell phone plan with a good data plan, you could possibly get rid of both your landline and Internet. You could also consider switching to a much lower cost alternative for a landline, like Magic Jack or Google Voice. I’ve used both options, and while they aren’t perfect, I would highly recommend them due to the sheer savings! If you’re going to keep your Internet, though, I would recommend going with the Magic Jack.
Get Rid of the Excess
This is one of the simplest tips to help save money on utility bills: if you aren’t using it, turn it off (or down)! This means turning off lights when you leave a room, turning off the water when you’re brushing your teeth, and lowering the heat just a few degrees.
Become More Energy Efficient
This is one of those “spend money to save money” tips, but it’s one I actually endorse. When it comes to the lighting in your home, are you still using old incandescent light bulbs? If so, drop what you’re doing and go to the store right now! Pick up some new energy efficient CFL light bulbs. They may look weird and cost a little more money initially, but they help you save money on utility bills – I promise! They also last much longer, which means you’ll actually spend less on burnt out bulbs over time as well. If you can’t afford bulbs for your whole house all at once, pick up a pack over time, such as one each week.
Service Your Furnace
Or boiler or whatever other source of heat you have. Having a heating source that is well-maintained and clean is not only safer, but will save money on utility bills throughout the heating season. If you don’t feel up to the job, call around for some quotes in your area. Some companies may even be willing to let you make payments if necessary.
Pay on Time!
This is a biggie. Whenever possible, pay your utility bills on time. After all, you can’t save money on utility bills if you continue to get whacked with late charges. If you’re having problems paying the whole amount, call the utility company. Most companies will be more than happy to work out an arrangement that can help you, such as enrolling you in a charitable assistance program, setting up payment arrangements, or putting you on a budget.
I’m sure I missed a bunch! What tips would you share with anyone looking to save money on utility bills?