You found the perfect house, applied for a mortgage, were accepted, and purchased your house! Now, you realize that your expenses do not just include your mortgage. You also have to pay for power, water, sewer, and trash, too. Your utilities can be a major expense—but there are ways to reduce how much energy you use and to therefore cut your bill! Here are seven energy-saving tips for your new home:
- Wash clothes in cold water. Not only can this prolong the life of your clothes, it can also save on your energy bills, since heating water to wash clothes, especially if you do a wash more than once a week, can be a serious expense.
- Put up heavy curtains. Heavy curtains can help keep cool air cool in the summer and warm air warm in the winter. By blocking the sun in the summer, you can turn your air conditioning off. Heavy curtains also prevent cold air from seeping into your home through your windows in the winter.
- Install a low-flow toilet. A low-flow toilet is a great way to save water. There are even models that let you decide how much water to flush with that can make it possible to save even more water!
- Turn down the heat or the A/C. Instead of just relying on your heater or your A/C to keep you warm or cool during the appropriate months, consider investing in some warmer/cooler clothing. Instead of cranking the heater, put on a sweater. Of course, you’ll want to keep your home warm enough to prevent pipes from freezing, but it doesn’t have to be 80 degrees.
- Get into the habit of turning things off. If you’re leaving a room, turn off the light. Don’t leave your television, computer, or lamp on when you’re not actually using them.
- Switch incandescent light bulbs for LEDs. LEDs have a much longer life and use only a tiny fraction of the power than incandescent light bulbs use. They’re a little more expensive upfront, but they seriously pay off in the long run.
- Make sure your home is sealed. Air leaking through windows, baseboards, weather-stripping, fireplaces, air conditioning units, and more can hike your energy bills during both hot and cold months. Make sure your home is properly sealed to prevent this.