If you have chosen to buy a house in Victoria or elsewhere, after you unpack your belongings and have begun to settle in, it is a good time to review the available ways in which you can save money.
Likewise, if you are looking for places to rent in Darwin NT or anywhere, you can save money by negotiating and offering to sign a longer lease or act as a referee for the landlord.
How Home Owners Can Save Money
Hot Water Heater
You should set the temperature of your hot water heater to no more than 55°C. Most people do not use water any hotter than that, and you can save money without noticing it. The heater may benefit from being covered with a blanket – some are insulated better than others, and older units aren’t insulated at all.
If you install ceiling fans in most rooms, the air will keep moving, and you will be able to keep your thermostat one or two degrees higher in summer and lower by the same amount in winter, which will result in large savings.
If you do not leave the water running while brushing your teeth, you will save more than 20 litres of water. Cleaning your driveway with a broom rather than a hose will save about four times as much water.
A programmable thermostat should be installed, and you should learn how to use it. This will allow you to schedule changes to the temperature of your house while you are at work or asleep. Lamps, television sets and other heat-emitting items should not be placed near a thermostat, as they will cause the A/C to run for longer than is necessary.
There’s no need for a clothes dryer. A clothes rack, ideally outdoors, will be just as effective. Air is free, and there’s no shortage of the stuff. Even if you only use the rack
for part of the drying time, you will save money.
It is wise to check toilets, taps and under-sink plumbing for leaks. Any drip-drip-drip of water is also a drip-drip-drip of money.
Heating and Cooling
Around half of your energy bill is for heating and cooling. If vents in your home are blocked, your heating and cooling systems will work overtime because more blowing will be required. Vents should be free of dust. Trees near your house will cool your home naturally in summer by reducing the amount of sunrays that hit it, which will lower your bill for cooling significantly. They also increase property value.
Appliances and Electronics
To save electricity, you should keep your refrigerator door closed as much as possible. When you fill it after a shopping expedition, you should open the door only once when filling it. Lights should be turned off when you leave a room. Unused appliances – televisions, computers, stereos, video game consoles and so forth – should be turned off and unplugged. If not unplugged, they will still consume energy. Your dishwater should only be used when there is a full load. Dishes should be dried in the air. The appliances you use should be energy efficient. If they cost more up front, the money will ventually be paid back. A refrigerator, after all, could easily last for 20 years.
CFL and LED light bulbs can save much money over time and have longer lives than conventional incandescent bulbs. They should be installed wherever possible, for instance in halls and closets.
There is no shortage of ways to save money as a homeowner, and theyare often quite painless.