With a stagnant economy and a difficult job market out there, money is tight for many families this winter. For those of us in this situation, we are constantly looking to eliminate unnecessary expenses and cut costs when it comes to those core items and services that we need to buy. We reduce the number of meals we eat at restaurants, we take public transit more and buy gas less, and we decide to postpone a planned trip or vacation.
But savings can just as easily begin at home, as we’ve noted in two recent articles that deal with heat use and water consumption. Now, let’s take a look at another utilities cost that can add up quickly and that we’d always like to reduce: electricity.
Reducing electricity consumption can also help shrink your carbon footprint and make your home a more eco-friendly place. On this note, here are a few tips for reducing your home’s electricity use this year:
Automate Your House
All of us, at some time or another, have left lights on while we weren’t at home. Sometimes this was done intentionally, so as to make the house appeared occupied while we were off on a trip. Other times it was purely accidental. Either way, we can reduce our electricity use by being able to control our lights from afar, whether simply to turn them off or to make the home appear occupied in the most efficient manner. The best way to do this is by installing a home automation system that can be remotely controlled online. Companies like Vivint security can easily do this in a cost-effective manner.
Use Energy-Efficient Bulbs
Energy-efficient light bulbs may be more expensive when it comes to the initial purchase, but their ability to minimize electricity consumption means that your bill will decrease over the long-term. Ultimately, from both an environmental and cost perspective, energy-efficient bulbs are well worth the effort.
Reduce Heat Consumption
For many of us, our heating costs are tied to our electricity bill. This means that reducing the heat consumption in our home can lower our electricity use and our bill as a result. You can do this by adding insulation to your home, installing a smart thermostat, or simply by turning down the temperature a few degrees in the winter.
Government research shows that 40% of the electricity use by appliances and electronics in the home is consumed while these devices are turned off. Some of the top consumers include fixtures such as computers, printers, televisions, sound systems, and cable boxes. Unplugging these devices while not in use can translate into noticeable savings.
These are just a few of the ways to reduce your home electricity consumption. Doing so is not only great for your bottom line, but it also reduces your carbon footprint and fossil fuel dependency. If you’re looking to make your home more eco-friendly, creating an efficient energy policy is certainly a great place to start.