As a new year begins, many folks are making resolutions about how this year will be different than last year. One of the popular resolutions each year is to save money.
What’s important about saving money to you? Thinking about a vacation, a new car, or buying a home? No matter what’s important to you, these tips can help with the savings.
So let’s look at the top five easy ways to save money in the new year:
- Change your smoke alarm and CO detector batteries. The generally accepted advice was to do this task when switching two and from Daylight Savings time. That would have you changing the batteries twice each year. Current batteries typically last 18 months, so by changing them once each year you save several dollars and some time. If you are disciplined enough you could even set a calendar reminder to do it every 14 months or so and save even more.
- Keep in mind that newly purchased smoke alarms will most likely be of the 10 year non-replaceable battery type. That means the task of changing batteries for those devices won’t even exist.
- Change your lightbulbs. If you’re still using old-fashioned incandescent bulbs — those are the ones that Thomas Edison invented — it’s time to make a change! Those bulbs are the most expensive kind to operate. Consider replacing them with CFLs (Compact Fluorescent Lightbulbs) or LEDs (Light Emitting Diodes).
- CFLs are less expensive to purchase, but they don’t provide full brightness immediately when you turn them on.
- LEDs cost more to purchase but virtually never need to be replaced and are the least expensive to operate. LEDs provide full brightness as soon as you turn them on.
- Adjust the temperature on your water heater. Setting the water heater to a lower temperature reduces the amount of time the water heater has to run in order to maintain the temperature in the tank.
- A 10℉ reduction in temperature can save 3 to 5% on your water heating costs. It will also reduce the likelihood of scalding injuries.
- Wash your clothes on cold. Not only does this save money because you are not paying to heat the water for washing, it saves wear on the hot water heater and on your clothing fibers. It’s a win-win-win for savings.
- Get rid of cable. Cut the cable cord and save money on entertainment. Consider using streaming services to watch only what you want. Use the time saved to do something fun or educational.