Money Saving Ideas For Today’s Homeowner

In today’s economy, people are looking for different ways to save money on expenses. Here are a few ways to save money on your home:

Cut Costs On Your Mortgage
The recent rate dip has opened up another refinancing window.  Many borrowers are refinancing to lower rates and even refinancing to shorter term loans in order to pay off their mortgage quicker.  Now is as great a time as ever to make sure you have the best rate and loan program and are in the best financial situation available.

Need Repairs? Time To Negotiate
Contractors are still facing a slumping market and will probably be willing to strike a deal to get your business.  A survey on a consumer review website in May stated that 81% of contractors say they’d negotiate labor costs; more than 25% said they’d drop prices by more than 10%.  Also, service providers like house cleaners and landscapers are cutting rates, too – remember to get multiple price quotes. You’ll have the most bargaining power if you can be flexible about the timing of your project.

Get A Deal On Furniture
When sales slow down at the end of a season, many furniture shops will make deals to move their inventory, so check up on local deals around your neighborhood. At times gently used floor models can go for 25% off.   And remember, another easy way to save money – sign up for e-mails from furniture shopping sites and other stores who offer coupons on their websites or via e-mail.

Watch The Thermostat
Try to set thermostats no higher than 68 degrees in winter and no lower than 78 degrees in the summer. Turn your heat down even further at night or when you’re not home (unless you have a heat pump, which operates more efficiently at one consistent setting). Each extra degree in winter can increase heating costs by 3%. In summer, each degree can raise cooling costs by 6%. This can be a real cost saver, potentially saving you up to $500 annually.

Cut Back On The Dryer
Not only is it a big energy drain, it can also suck heated air out of your house very quickly in winter.  Instead, hang clothes on a clothing rack to dry and just use the dryer for towels and other heavy items – this can save about $25-$50 per year.

Go Fluorescent
Install the new type of fluorescent bulbs in lights you leave on for long periods. They provide four times as much light and last ten times longer than incandescent bulbs.  It can save you up about $10-$50 a year. •