It’s a good idea to work out different (successful) ways to save money at all times of the year, but right now, when things are tight and there are so many extra things to buy, it can become essential. Just a few dollars saved here and there can really add up, and what’s fantastic is that it’s highly likely this is something you can do. 

You might assume you’ve made all the savings you can and, without making your life utterly miserable (which you’ll obviously want to avoid), you’ve made all the cutbacks possible. Well, you might assume that, but once you’ve read through our list, you’ll probably realize there’s more you can do – and that it’s easy as well. With that in mind, here are some clever but easy ways to save money at home. 

Photo by Markus Spiske

Turn Appliances Off 

You’ve got all kinds of appliances in your home that you use on a daily basis – that’s things like the TV and coffee maker, the stove and the kettle, your laptop, and various chargers, for example. There will also be appliances that you don’t use all that much, but they’re still there, waiting for you to need them. The question is, are they (and everything else in your home) waiting for you while they’re still plugged in and switched on? 

The reality is that just putting something on standby isn’t the same as turning it off, and when standby is activated, the appliance is still using electricity. It’s true it won’t be using the same amount of energy as if it was fully functional and being used, but leaving your TV plugged in or a charger switched on, even if it’s not charging, is definitely costing you something. That’s why it’s best to switch everything off at the wall completely unless it has to be on at all times (like your fridge and freezer, for example). You could save a decent chunk of money that way. 

Tune Up Your Furnace

As with any big appliance, your furnace is going to cost a lot to run, even if you’ve opted for a more energy-efficient one. However, you’ll find that it costs a whole lot more to run if it’s not in great shape. If there’s something wrong with your furnace and it’s not heating in the way it should, it might be that you’re using a lot of energy to make it work but not getting the results you’re looking for. Or it could be that the whole thing breaks down and doesn’t work at all, which will cost a lot of money to fix (you might even have to have the furnace replaced).

The best thing to do if you want to save money at home is to have your furnace serviced regularly by experts in furnace repair – ideally timed to be done just before you start to use it more and more during the colder months. Although it will cost you something to have the checks carried out and for the furnace to be tuned up, it will be much less than wasting all that energy or having to pay out for larger repairs. 

Watch Less TV

It’s nice to finish work and to sit down in a comfy chair with a hot drink and some snacks and mindlessly watch TV, isn’t it? It just seems to be something that we all seem to do, and it’s a habit that doesn’t feel as though it’s doing any harm. 

Unfortunately, that’s not the case. Too much TV is bad for your health because you’re not moving around much, and you’re not exercising like you should be. Plus, you’re not using your brain; TV is a passive activity. And, of course, when you’re watching TV, you’re using electricity, and you have to pay for that. So, all in all, wouldn’t it be better to watch less TV (we’re not saying you have to give it up completely; no one wants that)? 

The key is to find another hobby that can take the place of your TV watching or at least help you reduce how much you watch. You can choose anything, and some good examples include cooking, knitting, reading, running, painting, listening to podcasts, or yoga – and there are hundreds of other examples too. When you’re doing these things, you’re not watching TV, and you’ll get some great benefits, plus, when you do watch TV, you’ll enjoy it all the more because it will be more of a treat. 

Since you’re watching less TV, you could also look at reducing the number of subscriptions you have, and that will save you money too.