With the soaring costs of living and energy prices, many households are looking at ways to stretch their budgets. Inflation in the U.S. was still quite high in April at 8.3%, according to The Wall Street Journal (opens in new tab) and gas prices have hit their highest national average ever at $4.598, according to AAA (opens in new tab).
So what can we do to fight inflation and rising prices on everything from gas to groceries? Ranging from 9 tips to make your food last longer to tips to save on energy bills, we all want to know how to save money.
Luckily, there are some clever ways to cut costs around the house to make things more manageable. So here are 11 household tips to save you money.
If you're worried about your energy bills soaring this summer, check out 10 ways to save energy this summer and lower your bills. While you're at it, take a look at these 9 ways you could be wasting water and not know it. Also, these are 5 tips to organize your fridge and make food last longer.
1. Make your own household cleaners
If you have a stash of store-bought cleaners, make your own and save money. In fact, you can easily make your own cleaning products using household items. Things like white vinegar, baking soda and lemon juice are common, natural cleaners. Simply mix a solution of white vinegar, baking soda, dish soap and water in a spray bottle, and there’s your multipurpose cleaner!
What’s more, this is far cheaper than brand name cleaners. Find out what makes baking soda and vinegar so good at cleaning and the 10 things you didn’t know you could clean with baking soda for more tips.
2. Hang-dry laundry
It may be convenient to have dry laundry in minutes, but your dryer is costing you electricity. Hang-dry your laundry in the backyard or balcony, or if you lack space, invest in a clothes horse drying rack like this Birdrock Home Folding Steel Clothes Drying Rack ($72, Amazon (opens in new tab)), which is space-saving. It may take longer to dry but will save you cash.
3. Cut down on bottled water
If you stock up on bottled water a week, it can all add up in the long-run. Invest in a quality water filter pitcher that will filter your tap water. It's cheaper over time, and it's better for the environment, too. There are many options available, but we recommend ZeroWater 20 Cup Ready-Pour 5-Stage Water Filter Pitcher ($29, Amazon (opens in new tab)). Make sure the water filter pitcher is NSF certified and BPA free. This will be cheaper than buying bottled water, and more eco-friendly.
4. Use microfiber cloths not paper towels
If you tend to go through paper towels when cleaning, use microfiber cloths instead. Microfiber cloths such as these Amazon Basics Microfiber Cleaning Cloths ($12, Amazon (opens in new tab)), are non-abrasive, washable and will save you money. Plus, there will be less wastage than paper towels, making it more eco-friendly.
5. Switch to smart lights
Save on electricity bills and invest in the best smart light bulbs for your home. Smart lights are much cheaper to run, as they use LEDs rather than the more costly incandescent and halogen light bulbs, which we focus on in our light bulb guide. You can set timers and schedules for each room, so you’ll never forget to turn off the lights. Plus, you can even sync them with your other best smart home devices. This will help save money and energy, not to mention offer convenience.
6. Repurpose furniture instead of buying new
If you have outdated furniture but don’t want to buy new, why not give it a makeover? By restoring or repainting old furniture, you can give them a new lease of life without breaking the budget. If you don’t want to splash out on a new kitchen, you can learn how to paint kitchen cabinets to transform them, or learn how to paint a room like a pro and save money on a decorator.
7. Seal the gaps
Inspect windows and doorways for any gaps that will let air escape, and block with caulking or weather-stripping. Losing heat and air conditioning through such gaps will cost us a fortune on heating or AC bills. In addition, keep drafts out by knowing how to insulate your windows, or use a simple draft stopper to banish chills from doors and windows.
8. Buy rechargeable batteries
Be it electronic gadgets or children’s toys, it’s easy to go through tons of batteries on a regular basis. Make the switch to rechargeable batteries rather than constantly buying new ones. There are many quality battery chargers to handle any type of battery, such as this Energizer Rechargeable AA and AAA Battery Charger ($17, Amazon (opens in new tab)). This will save you money in the long run; plus, you won’t have to worry about disposing them.
9. Set your dishwasher to eco mode
Most dishwashers or washing machines have an eco mode or power saving function to save energy. This mode will give you the best cleaning power at a lower cost, saving you money on energy bills. If you're after an upgrade, check out the best dishwashers for more eco-friendly options.
10. Switch to cloth napkins
Instead of using paper towels at mealtimes, cloth napkins will save you money (and wastage) in the long-run. Similar to using microfiber cloths for cleaning, cotton napkins can be washed and reused. Plus, they come in different colors like these Ruvanti Multi Color Cloth Napkins 12 Pack ($20, Amazon (opens in new tab)), which are much more attractive than boring paper towels.
11. Adjust your thermostat
Simply turning up your thermostat by one or two degrees during the summer can save you on your energy bill. You can also invest in one of the best smart thermostats to set a desired temperature while you're away, and save substantial money on your bills. If you don’t have central air conditioning but still want to save money on your cooling bill this summer, check out the best smart air conditioners (opens in new tab).
If you want more money-saving tips check out, tips to save on energy bills and 15 water saving tips, to reduce your usage. Also, this is the cheapest time to do your laundry and these are 5 ways your smart home can save you money. Also, what is an Energy Star rating and how can it save you money? We also have guides on how to make your old iPhone last longer and how to save energy this summer.