Maintaining a home is often one of the most costly expenses for anyone. From rent or mortgage repayments to utilities and other services, getting a better deal on your household services takes a little time and research. However, the cost savings you realise can be more than worth the time spent to identify where and how you can save. Considering switching services and taking other smart measures to save are starting points to realising massive savings.
Utilities such as Internet, phone, gas and electricity services are vital for any home, so how can you save on these budget items? From time to time, you should compare electricity rates(and other utility rates) to check what you’re paying against market rates. Shop around for better rates, be open to switching and possibly join a consumer network, as these leverage collective customer power to bargain for better rates from utility companies.
You can also save on energy and water bills by introducing smart measures to your home. The good thing about these cost-cutting measures is that they’re also good for the environment.
- Generate your own power –If you don’t generate your own power, you could think about getting solar panels. The electricity you generate can power any appliance in the home, and what’s more, excess power can be sold back to the grid so that you get a credit on your bill.
- Hot water –Hot water systems can be very energy-intensive and, often, the cheapest is a solar hot water system. You should investigate the different types of systems available and opt for a new one if you think you’re paying too much on powering your current hot water system.
- Appliances and conservation tools –Upgrade old, energy-guzzling appliances and use tools like water-saving showerheads and rainwater tanks to conserve and save.
- Bundling –Bundling your services could help you save more on things like the phone and Internet, so ask your provider about your bundling options to save more money.
Mortgage or Rent
Your mortgage or rent can be one of the largest items on your expense list, and it could be worth shopping around to see whether you can take advantage of better mortgage rates or get a better rental rate in a similar area.
Cleaning and Maintenance
Cleaning and maintenance can form a significant percentage of your overall household expenses if you have a large home and you outsource these types of services. Pool cleaning can be a costly expense, as can garden maintenance and upkeep.
Other than shopping around for a better deal, you could cut costs in these areas by:
- Switching to DIY –Switching to doing-it-yourself is always cheaper than outsourcing; however, this will take up more of your free time.
- Introducing time-saving measures –It’s often far cheaper to DIY, but do you have the time? You could consider introducing a few basic measures to reduce the time and effort required. For example, a pool cover and an automatic cleaner could eliminate the need for professional cleaning services. Redesigning your garden with low-maintenance plants or paving over a large proportion of the garden could reduce the time needed to maintain it.