Winter is known for its frigid temperatures and snow in most parts of the world. The cold weather means that people spend more money on heating bills, car expenses, and other necessities. This article will teach you how to save money this winter by cutting back on unnecessary expenditures while still enjoying the season.
Save on your monthly bills
What many people don’t know is that powering the temperature in your home by just one degree can mean saving up to ten percent or more of energy costs during the long winter months. This is because energy companies charge based on usage and not time, so any time your home is heating when no one is there to enjoy the warmth, you are paying for it. Starting in September or October, turn down your thermostat by just one degree and start saving immediately.
If you are dependent on electricity to heat up your home, consider a space heater instead. If you look up prices of electricity for your state, let’s say “Texas electricity prices” you will be able to calculate how much you can save if you use an electric heater versus a gas or heating oil bill. Consider the cost of purchasing and maintaining a space heater, and then calculate how much money you would be saving in the long run compared to your current method. Calculate this for various angles; how much will it cost you to keep warm? How many dollars a day are you spending on heating? How many days a month does it vary? These numbers will help you determine the cheapest method of keeping warm.
Prepare for emergencies
The best way to prepare for emergencies is by having an emergency fund. This allows you to take manage your finances quickly and efficiently without draining your bank account or putting yourself in unnecessary debt during tough times. When a problem arises, you can turn to your emergency fund instead of having the additional stress of finding a way to fix it.
The average expense for heating homes is about $100 dollars a month during the winter months. This not only includes the cost of heating, but also extra costs such as setting up home systems and maintenance. In order to make sure you have the money to comfortably pay for these expenses, it is a good idea to create an emergency fund. By putting away as much as $100 a month starting early autumn, your savings account will be able to cover your heating expenses when winter rolls around. In addition, if you do not use all of the money that has been saved, you should use it to pay down debt or save it so that you can create an even larger emergency fund.
Consider a higher deductible health plan
Health insurance premiums can add up throughout the year, but they may be taking more than their fair share from your wallet during these winter months. If you have a high-deductible health plan (HDHP), you could save money this year by increasing your out-of-pocket costs before benefits kick in. This gives you an incentive to prioritize lower-cost care throughout the year while still offering against major medical expenses should anything go wrong.
If you are currently paying about $200 for health insurance each month, consider upping your deductible to $250 or more. This will save you about $100 a month, which can be used towards other expenses such as paying down debt, creating an emergency fund, or saving up money to use during the holidays. By increasing your deductible by only fifty dollars, you would be able to prevent yourself from spending hundreds of extra dollars on health costs throughout the winter season.
It may seem like a no-brainer, but dressing appropriately can also help you stay warm without spending too much extra time heating your house with an additional blanket or turning up the heat even higher than usual. Keep a pair of gloves or even socks in your pocket throughout the day, as well as a scarf and hat if you know you will be going outside. Wearing these items during the coldest times of the day can make all the difference in how warm you feel, and it allows you to stay comfortable without spending too much time heating up rooms or turning up thermostats.
If you wear light clothes around your home, there are higher chances that you will need to turn up the heat and spend more money than if you had dressed in layers. When it is cold outside, you lose a lot of body heat because the air is so much colder than your actual skin temperature. It’s important to wear several pieces of clothing at once to prevent this from happening since each layer insulates your skin further from the air.
Focus on smaller expenses
Sometimes it is not always possible to lower monthly expenses such as health care premiums, insurance bills, and energy costs. Try thinking about other small ways that you can save money this winter season. Start by making sure your place is clean and tidy. Spring-cleaning now may help prevent receiving an additional bill from having to hire a professional cleaning service come January.
Swap out your light bulbs within the next week, as most companies will run sales on light-bulb purchases before Christmas. This can help you save money by using less energy throughout the winter season. From changing your light bulbs to making sure that you use all of your lights and faucets efficiently, there are a variety of small changes you can make to help take the burden off your wallet this winter.
After all, every little bit counts when it comes down to paying your heating bill at the end of the month. Even if you are not able to lower your monthly expenses, by focusing on smaller expenses that may have been overlooked, you may be able to save hundreds of dollars this winter.
The winter season is the perfect time to stay warm without spending too much money. If you’ve been trying to figure out how to lower your monthly expenses this year, we presented a few steps you can take that will make all the difference in keeping yourself and your family happy through these tough months. From changing your light bulbs or swapping out old clothes for new ones before it gets colder outside, every little change counts towards lowering those heating bills at the end of December or January.