29 April 2018 0 Comments Posted By : Edited by John Stokes

6 Ways Smart Homeowners Can Save Money



 

People habitually say that renting a house is like throwing money down the drain. The notion is based on the fact that renting builds no equity.

Every dollar you put toward an apartment or rental home is a dollar you’ll never see again. Home ownership, on the other hand, entails control of an appreciating asset that enables you to gather equity.

Although this is true, home ownership comes with its own set of costs. Any one of these expenses might not seem to be significant, an array of them can add up and place a significant strain on your budget.

Smart homeowners recognize the expenses associated with owning a residence, and do everything they can to cut costs and save money. Here are a few techniques you can adopt from their playbook.

 1.     Refinance Your Mortgage

Has some time passed since you bought your home? If so, you may have a higher interest rate on your mortgage than is attainable for you now.

Currently, mortgage rates are on the rise, but they’re still lower than they’ve often been in past years. Switching to a lower rate could save you hundreds of dollars a year.

2.     Do Your Own Landscaping

One of the negatives of owning a home is that you have to do the landscaping. If you’re like many other homeowners, you don’t necessarily have time to mow the grass and trim the shrubs.

So you hire a landscaper. “While professional lawn care services can do a good job, they come at a cost,” Green Residential explains.

“If you were to pay someone to come out and take care of your yard a couple of times per month, you’re looking at $100 to $200 per month. There’s something to be said for doing it yourself and saving the money (if your schedule permits).”

 3.     Install a Smart Thermostat

HVAC typically consumers the majority of homeowners’ energy bill in most months. Unfortunately, a lot of the energy used to power your heating and cooling is wasted during the periods when you aren’t at home.

By switching to a smart thermostat such as a Nest, you can enjoy the cost-saving benefits of programmable temperature settings.

Don’t have the money to splurge on a Nest? “Some energy companies send you a $249 Nest Thermostat at no cost when you sign up for certain plans,” the company explains.

“Others give you an instant $100 rebate -- no paperwork necessary. Even more energy companies offer traditional mail-in rebates.”

4.     Install LED Light Bulbs

If you’re still using incandescent light bulbs in your home, you’re wasting a ton of unnecessary energy (and therefore money). Switch to LED (or CFL) light bulbs and you’ll save significant funds over the long haul.

For the best results, install the replacements in your lamps and light fixtures that get the most use. You’ll save a few dollars a month, and they last for years.

5.     Install Attic Insulation

The odds are, you’re losing a lot of heat through your attic in the winter. One of the quickest ways you can save money is by installing further insulation.

In fact, boosting the amount of insulation in your attic from R-11 to R-49 will save you about $600 per year. Since it typically costs in the neighborhood of $1,500 to have a contractor do the job, you could be saving money in less than three years.

6.     Shop Around for Home Insurance


It’s smart to have home insurance, but that can get expensive. If you haven’t investigated the market lately, it may be worth looking around and comparing prices and plans. Even if you don’t want to switch providers, you could save merely by raising your deductible.

As Insurance Information Institute reminds us, “A deductible is the amount of money that you are responsible for paying toward an insured loss. The higher your deductible, the more money you can save on your premium, so if you can pay above the minimum $500 or $1,000 deductible, for example, you may reduce the cost of your homeowners policy.”

Adding it All Up


Smart homeowners recognize the added costs of home ownership and do everything they can to eliminate or reduce expenses wherever possible. As the various strategies in this article should indicate, you only have to be dialed in and proactive to save a few hundred dollars per month.

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