Feeling a little lighter in the wallet now that the holiday season has come and gone? You’re not the only one. The simple truth is that if you’ve managed to weather the expense of holiday gifts, decorations, and vacations with your wallet even half full, you’re doing better than most of us.
But it’s time to start looking to the future, and while that may mean using credit cards or signature installment loans to recover from holiday spending, there’s plenty of other small ways to save money in the new year. One of the biggest costs you’ll face this winter is your heating bill. Depending on the size of your house, this can be a substantial expense. But you’re in luck, because there are inexpensive ways of keeping your house warm without running the heat constantly, and we’re going to share a few of them with you today.
Ovens aren’t great at trapping heat, and while that excess heat can be downright uncomfortable during summer, in winter it’s more than welcome. If your kitchen is located close to your living room then cooking or baking can actually help keep your family toasty warm. By choosing to cook your meals at home, you will also get healthier and reduce your overall food costs, saving you even more money.
On top of worrying about heating your house, the dark days of winter means the days are shorter and your lights will have to be turned on sooner, which in turn adds to your electric bill. To save on both heating and lights, open your window blinds to take advantage of the natural light and thermal heating from the sun. Not only will it help you keep from having to turn on your lights until absolutely necessary, but the extra heat the sun generates can help warm your house throughout the day. As an added bonus, it’s been proven that the light from the sun can boost your mood through the dismal winter months.
This is a neat little trick not everyone is aware of. While we mostly think of fans for cooling off, there’s actually a way they can be used to evenly disperse the warmth in a room. Because of the normal rotation of a fan’s blades, they pull heat upwards and away from you and your family at ground level. But all fans have an option to reverse the rotation of their blades so that the hot air that pools at the top of a room is actually pushed down to evenly warm it.
This may take a little more investment in time and effort than the other tips on this list, but it stands to potentially save you the most money of any of them. The insulation in the walls and roof of your house is what keeps heat trapped inside and prevents cold from radiating inward, and even a small gap in it can let warmth out and cold air in. This winter, check your home for insulation leaks. A snug home is a warm home, and a warm home takes less money to keep that way.