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

Cut costs on your mortgage

The continued rate dip has opened up a refinancing window that is pretty hard to pass up.  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 mortgage and are in the best financial situation available.  Please feel free to call or email and I can help make sure you are best positioned on your mortgage.

If you’re in need of repairs, now is the time to negotiate

Though it may be on the way up, contractors are still facing a slumping market and will probably be willing to strike a deal to get your business, especially during these cold winter months.  A recent survey on a consumer review website 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.

Look for Deals

 When sales slow down after the holiday season and end-of-the-year sales, 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.   Also, if you’re in need of a new television or other appliance, now is the best time to buy, as new models are coming out in the spring and sales on current stock offer great deals right now.  Also, if you have credit card with that store, ask about 0% financing, as most of them offer it on an 18-36 month basis for their customers.

Some other cost cutting ideas:

Try to set thermostats no higher than 68 degrees in winter. 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%. During the summer, each degree can raise cooling costs by 6%. This can be a real cost saver, potentially saving you up to $325 to $500 annually.

Cut back on the use of your 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 and this can save about $25-$50 per year.

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.