Getting out on your own is a big step for most millennials, but learning how to budget bills and invest smarter can definitely be a struggle. Luckily, you don’t have to worry if you can’t make it to adulting school to figure out how to save. We’ve chatted with leading energy experts to get the deets on how to save BIG on your annoyingly high energy bill — you know, so you can *actually* afford to splurge on a new jacket this month.
1. Every degree counts. While it doesn’t seem like much, dropping your thermostat by even a single degree can help save you tons of money in the long run, says Vince Youndt, owner of Vertex Mechanical. “If you are normally comfortable keeping the thermostat set at 70, consider dropping it to 69,” he advises. You’ll barely notice a difference!
2. Stop washing your clothes in hot water. “The less hot water you use, the less work your water heater has to do,” says Isaac Hammelburger of Payless Power. Instead of washing your sweats in hot water, try switching to cold instead. “Pre-treating stains and washing them in cold water is a better way of removing unwanted materials from your clothing anyway.”
3. Turn on your ceiling fan. That’s right — turning on your ceiling fan can actually help you save money on your energy bill. “A clockwise spinning fan will help trap heat inside rooms and reduce the work of your heating unit,” notes Danielle Marquis of AM Conservation Group.
4. Get a whole-home energy audit by a building science professional. “These are half- to full-day visits and [they] establish where you home is wasting energy,” says Jeff Wilson, HGTV host and author of The Greened House Effect. It’s basically a guide to everything you can do to save on your energy costs, plus the inspection isn’t as costly as most people think.
5. Beware of energy vampires. Even if you turn off all your lights and appliances, energy vampires can still be costing you money. “Some of the biggest energy suckers in homes are appliances and electronics as they continue to use energy if they are plugged in — even if they are turned off,” says Stacee Flanagan, energy solutions director at Allconnect. “By unplugging appliances that aren’t being used often, like the refrigerator in the garage or the TV in the basement, you can cut down on your energy use and your electricity bill.”
6. Invest in home automation features. While it may seem pricey at first to update your whole system, investing in smart home features can actually save you a lot of moola. “Home automation allows you to control things like lighting, temperature, locks and sprinklers from your smartphone or tablet,” says Sage Singleton of SafeWise.
7. Don’t check the cookies in the oven. “We know it is tempting to look at the deliciousness — but patience is much more than a virtue here,” notes Kiran Bhatraju, CEO of Arcadia Power. “If you keep your oven door closed, you can save a large amount of energy in such a simple way.”
How do you save money on your energy bill? Tweet us your tips @BritandCo!
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