In today’s uncertain times, many Americans have faced job losses or feel insecure in their positions at work. In fact, 9.6 million lost their jobs during the first three quarters of 2020 due to CDVID-19, making the reality of the need to save money hit home hard during the pandemic.
With the expenses that come with owning a home beyond that monthly mortgage payment, from insurance and property taxes to maintenance, taking advantage of these money-saving tips can help ensure you get through those rough financial periods relatively unscathed.
Take Advantage of Smart Home Products
Sometimes you need to spend money in order to make money – or save in this case. Installing smart home products like the Google Nest Thermostat and water monitoring systems can help you save money on your monthly energy and water bills. That means they usually pay for themselves over time.
The Google Nest learns your preferred temperature and can program itself. It can even be controlled from your smartphone. Homeowners with smart thermostats like these save an average of ten to 15 percent per year on their energy bill.
You might want to talk to your insurance company to find out if installing a smart security system would lower your annual homeowners’ insurance premium. While you’re already adding smart products to your home, consider upgrading old appliances with smarter ones that don’t use as much energy.
Create an Emergency Fund
Homeowners often face unexpected financial surprises. When an appliance breaks down, a leak is found in the roof, or the water heater goes out, it’s best to have a maintenance fund in place so you don’t find yourself using credit, going into debt to cover the expenses which typically incurs high-interest fees.
Experts recommend an emergency fund with the equivalent of 1 to 4 percent of your home’s value. For example, the average home in 2021 had a price tag of $408,800, so an emergency fund of 2.5 percent would be $10,220.
If your home is in need of a major fix, perhaps a new roof, there are more low-cost home improvement financing options available which would be far less than putting it on a credit card. Home improvement loans are also available for major renovations, which can add to your overall home equity.
Not all money-saving tips are big endeavors. Small, daily acts and consistency are really what saves money in the long term. It can be as simple as cutting a sponge in half or washing your plastic food storage bags so they can be used once, twice, or more. Cleaning your refrigerator coils can save big bucks on your energy bill.
You might make your own dryer sheets with cut-up rags, vinegar, and essential oils. Take advantage of online pick-up options for your shopping. While you may pay a service fee for delivery, you avoid the temptation of purchasing items you don’t need. If you opt to pick them up yourself, you’ll save on the delivery fee and the price of those candy bars that looked oh so enticing in the check-out line.
Learn How to DIY
It can be daunting to tackle a big task on your own, but your wallet will thank you for trying it yourself instead of paying the local handyman. You can learn almost anything on YouTube and the do-it-yourself videos are bountiful.
The next time air filters need replacing or a minor repair needs to be done, do a quick YouTube search and give it a try first before you pay someone to do it for you.