While those with large incomes may never have to worry about pinching pennies, the majority of us look for any method that we can to save money. When you add up all the expenses that you have in life, including mortgage payments, car loans, insurance, grocery bills, utilities, childcare, and all the others, it becomes necessary to cut out some of the wasteful spending to build up savings.
Becoming a homeowner comes with many perks financially. First, your monthly payments no longer go toward rent, but toward paying down the principal of your home loan. With every payment, your equity in the home increases. Second, you can spend your money on improvements that raise the property value and improve the functionality of the property.
Another perk of being a homeowner is that you can look for ways to lower your utility bills that arrive each month. Utilities include water, sewer, electricity, gas, and even garbage removal. Wifi and security could also be considered utilities, though they are not required. Lowering utility costs can save you a lot of money, so let’s talk about a few methods to do so in Portland, OR.
Alternative Energy Sources
Alternative energy is a hot topic for both business and residential property owners. Electricity can be an expensive utility, especially if your home uses a lot of power. Reducing the amount of power needed from the grid in your home can decrease how much money you spend each month on electricity.
Solar energy is one of the most popular options for alternative sources. Different types of solar panels can be installed on your property to convert the sun’s rays into power for your home. This upgrade is expensive upfront but will yield greater energy independence so that your electric bills are lowered.
While wind energy can be a fantastic alternative to electricity from public grids, it is not as popular as solar energy. All the same, installing a personal wind turbine on your property can yield more power for your home, lowering the electric bill each month.
Windows are another wise upgrade that Portland homeowners can invest in. Older models tend to be less effective at being a strong barrier between exterior elements and indoor spaces. Heat loss can occur in winter while cool air can escape in the heat of summer. Installing energy-efficient windows will aid your HVAC system as it attempts to maintain comfortable temperatures. In turn, this will lower utility costs since your home is drawing less power for heating and cooling purposes.
An insulated home is an efficient one. It is also better protected from weather elements. When insulation breaks down in various areas of your home, substances like rainwater or melted snow can get in, causing significant water damage. Additionally, uninsulated pipes can freeze at lower temperatures, causing breakage that spills water into the home and jacks up your water bill. Water damage restoration in Portland, OR can be expensive, so protect your home better by maintaining insulation throughout the property.
Energy Star Appliances
Appliances in your home draw a lot of power and other resources to function. Refrigerators, washing machines, ovens, dishwashers, dryers, and others have a big impact on your utility bills. Investing in appliances with high energy star ratings can dramatically improve your mood when those lower utility bills arrive in the mail or email inbox. Many of the newest models of dishwashers and washing machines use far less water to get the job done, or they give you the option to use less water for a cycle. Additionally, the use of power is becoming more efficient, so the electricity required to run modern appliances is much lower than in previous models.
The final method for lowering utility bills in Portland that we will discuss involves smart technology. Innovation moves quickly, and homeowners who want to save on utilities can take advantage of technologies like smart thermostats. This feature makes it easier to control temperatures while you are in the home and away, cutting down on wasteful heating and cooling practices. There are even smart LED bulbs that have automatic energy-saving features. Many smart devices can lower utility bills for homeowners, so upgrade your home with these systems to yield long-term savings.
Invest Now, Benefit Later
The key to saving on utility bills is to understand that these changes require upfront investments. You will not immediately make up for the cost of the upgrade in the next month or two, but in several years, the upgrade will pay for itself. From then on, you are only saving money on your monthly bills. Consider the impact that lower utility bills for your Portland home will have on your bank account in the long run when you are deciding what upgrades to pay for.