Single moms, or dads, have a huge burden to deal with. The biggest burden is usually financial issues. Other than housing, the utilities are usually the largest expense that we have. This article will give you ways to save money on your utilities; gas, electric and water. I have put together inexpensive ideas because I know that there are a lot of single moms that will not have the income to do things such as insulate the attic or replace all of the appliances with energy efficient ones.
The first thing that can help you save money on your utilities is to teach your kids how to turn out the lights. This has been a hard one in my family because my sister’s kids live with me and they seem to leave every light on in every room. This increased my utilities quite a bit. Having them start learning to turn the lights out when they leave a room, or me going to turn out the lights regularly, helped me save about $20 a month on my utilities.
Cook meals in the evening when it is cooler so that the heat is reduced in the winter and the air is reduced in the summer. Another thing that can help you save money on your utilities is to cook a couple days a week. Prepare meals that can be frozen and reheated, which does not take as much electricity. This can save a single mom time and money.
Start timing the showers every day, or reduce the amount of water you put in the bathtub so that you can save money on utilities. This is especially helpful for large families that have a lot of people that need to be cleaned. As a single mom it will help you time out your evening better as well.
Only wash full loads of clothes or avoid running the dishwasher unless it is full. Both of these can run your utilities up each month, and reducing their usage can save money on water, electricity and gas.
Change all of your bulbs to halogen bulbs. The halogen bulbs are more expensive, but they last a lot longer and reduce your energy usage. Changing all of my bulbs to halogen bulbs reduced my utility bill by about $30 a month. With those types of savings the bulbs pay for themselves.
Put a large gallon of water in your freezer and your refrigerator to keep it at a consistent temperature. Both of these can help you save money on your utilities. When you have kids opening and closing the doors, the water will help reduce the electric usage.
If you cannot afford to purchase a toilet that uses less water, add a jar of water to the tank. This displaces that amount of water allowing you to use less water and save money. The toilet will still work the same.
Open your blinds in the winter, and close them in the summer. This will allow for more heat to enter your home in the winter so that it will keep it warmer, and will keep the cool air in the home during the summer.
Purchase power strips for your home. Hook up all of your electronics to these, and turn them off when you leave the home. Even when electronics are off they continue to use power. Using a power strip on your electronics can save you $10-$20 a month, depending on how many electronics that you have.
Unplug all of the chargers when they are not in use. If you are a single mom with teens, then you are likely to have a few chargers plugged in at any time. If they are not in use they will continue to put out electricity. Have your kids get in the habit of unplugging these chargers so that you can save money on your utilities.
If you are on any type of government assistance, ask if they will help by discounting any of your utilities. They want to help single moms save money on their utilities, and will usually be able to lead you in the direction of programs that will help.
Other Inexpensive Ways for Single Moms to Save Money on Your Utilities:
- Insulate your hot water heater.
- Turn off water when brushing your teeth.
- Make use of the water that would usually be wasted when you are waiting for it to get hot.
- Close the door to the closets. They do not need to be heated or cooled.
- Close off any rooms that are not used, and close the vent to these rooms.
- Enjoy the outside air on nice days by opening windows and doors. It will give you fresh air and reduce your energy usage.
- Wash clothes in cold water
- Put weather strips around doors and windows. Towels are a good option as well if you can’t afford the stripping at the moment.
- Lower the temperature on the water heater.
- Use a thermostat.
- Change your filters regularly
- Purchase blackout curtains
- Do a comparison on utility companies to make sure that you are paying the lowest rates.
- Use a humidifier in the winter