We all want to save money, some of us would like to be more environmentally friendly, none of us want to work harder or reduce our standard of living. Hopefully these tips will please everyone!
1. Re-use whenever you can. Save any plastic containers (such as those that take away food is often supplied in) if you can use them for storing other food or household items. Re-cycling is better than sending waste to landfill, but still uses energy to convert the item into something else and costs you money when you buy a replacement.
2. If you’re cold, put on a sweater rather than switching on the heating. Or wear socks and slippers if it’s your feet that are cold. It’s you that needs to be kept warm, not the entire house. Heating is probably the biggest household fuel cost.
3. For winter have a higher tog rated quilt rather than running the heating all night. If you like to get into a warm bed then use a hot water bottle rather than an electric blanket. These are cheaper to buy and to use.
4. If you’re too hot, then wear lighter or less clothing rather than using a fan or air conditioning.
5. Turn off the oven a few minutes before the food is cooked. The food will still finish cooking provided you keep the door closed.
6. Allow any hot food to cool to room temperature before putting it into the fridge or freezer. Not only will your appliance have to work harder (costing you money) to cool hot food, but the inside temperature will be raised which might spoil other stored foods.
7. Buy fruit and vegetables from farm shops, garden gates and local markets. It might be cheaper, will probably be fresher and have travelled less miles than that available in supermarkets and it’ll have far less packaging to go into landfill.
8. Don’t buy expensive machines and gadgets to keep you fit. Going for a brisk walk will do you just as much good at no cost. If you walk to the shops or work instead of driving your exercise routine could actually save you money.
9. Feed any suitable food scraps to the birds. It would be even better not to buy and cook more than you need, but if there is any meat, cheese, cake, pastry etc then use it to ‘buy’ the entertainment of watching birds at close quarters rather than putting it in the bin.
10. Instead of buying expensive machinery consider hiring it. For items used only once or twice a year this will probably be cheaper and will save on maintenance and insurance costs as well as storage space. For regularly used items such as lawnmowers consider buying one with your neighbours. You could purchase a better model at a lower cost per person and less fuel and materials will be needed to build one model than would be used for one each.
Published in: Personal Finance