This Winter, Here’s How You Can Reduce Your Energy Bill

Winter has finally approached us, meaning that many of us are going to see a rise in our energy bills. 10 percent of renters in 2013 said that they spend the most on their utility bills, according to a Rent survey. On top of being environmentally conscious, you can save a few dollars off your monthly bills just by being more aware about your behavioral habits. Heating and cooling your apartment alone can cost a large amount of money, especially in states where extreme temperatures are more common, U.S. News found.

All it takes is some minor adjustments, and you can have a more energy-conscious home. Simple appliance updates and home upkeep are just some small steps you can take towards saving money. This winter, here’s how you can reduce your energy bill via Time.

    1. Get Cozy – Hey you, don’t take that sweater off. Get comfy in your home by bundling up and turning the thermostat down. When it’s cold, it’s easier to get warm than it is to get cool when it’s hot. If you drop your thermostat down to the 60-70 degree range, you’ll end up saving anywhere from five to 20 percent off your bill. Also, if you open up your curtains, you’ll get some heat retained in your home. It’s a small sacrifice that goes a really long way. If you’re trying to take things up a notch, adjust your water heater down to 120 degrees, which is safe and sanitary for most households per the U.S. Department of Energy.
    2. Get Smart Home Systems – A smart home system is going to be able to adjust the temperature of your home for you, effectively saving you some cash every month. A programmable thermostat can save you around $180 per year in costs.
    3. Upgrade Your Appliances – Having newer appliances can save you some money in the long run, giving you more time to focus on your home insurance. 20 percent of your electric bill comes from running appliances, meaning that any small changes you make can be drastic. Furnaces should be replaced every 15-20 years, so make sure you’ve got one that’s up-to-date. And water heaters can be replaced, considering they account for 11 percent of your water bill. Additionally, getting HVAC equipment can qualify you for a tax discount.
    4. Insulate Your Home – You can use clear plastic sheeting and insulated window coverings to secure your home. There can be drafts in chimneys, fireplaces and in unfinished cabinets.
    5. Don’t Forget the Little Things – Yes, turning your lights off every time you leave home helps. Unplug things that you aren’t using and be vigilant about it. Idle gadgets are wasteful. Don’t leave things plugged in overnight.

A home is one of the largest investments you can make. Cutting costs where you can is helpful, but you never want to compromise your safety at home. Protect your home with an affordable Home Insurance program.



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