In the darkest part of the year, it´s tempting to try hibernating through the next couple months. If you can get a plan in place now though, you can get a jump on spring, and a couple of things will even help you save money.
1) Let's Save Some ENERGY!
a) Turn Down the WATER HEATER - Lowering the thermostat setting on your water heater is an easy way to save money; for each 10ºF you decrease the temperature, you can save 3%–5% in energy costs. Did you know most water heater manufacturers set the temperatures of their water heaters to 140 degrees F. 120 degrees F is plenty hot. This is a great way to save money.
b) Change those dirty HVAC Air Filter - Households can save between 5-15% if the air filters on their furnaces get changed 4 times a year. When's the last time YOU changed your air filter? If you can't remember you should do so now. A good way to remember when you changed your filter last is to WRITE THE DATE directly on the air filter with a marker.
c) Upgrade to a PROGRAMABLE Thermostat - new programmable thermostats start at around $40 and can save the average homeowner $200 per season.
There are some new and very interesting programmable thermostats on the market, for example, NEST thermostats came on the market in 2012 and are receiving some great consumer and industry feedback. Some feedback suggests NEST doesn't work with all systems, but the idea of a simple thermostat that 'learns' homeowners heating and cooling behavior seems to be a step in the right direction for the HVAC market.
2) Let's Save some CHRISTMAS MONEY!!
a) Now is a great time of year to top up on Christmas CARDS / WRAPPING PAPER / and DECORATIONS - some stores there are savings of 50% or more!
b) When you do bring all that new wrapping paper home here is a great idea on how to store it:
Wrapping Paper and Supplies: Store wrapping paper rolls in that unused space at the top of a closet—its ceiling.
3) Other Great January Sale items include:
a) Electronics - Bedding / Linens - Sports and or Exercise equipment - Electronics - Winter clothing and accessories - storage solutions / bins, etc.
January doesn't have to be such a 'blah' month.
Keep busy, hopefully keep warm, and you might enjoy the winter months just a bit more.
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