For most of us, summer never comes soon enough. With it comes swimming, barbequing, camping, baseball, and for kids – freeeeeeedom! But with these things, come inevitable increases in household spending. Bored kids need entertainment, which usually costs money. The electric bill climbs as the air conditioning gets cranked. Vacation savings are initiated. But there are ways to keep the spending under control, and even add some extra income into your life that are so easy you’ll be beating yourself up over waiting till the summer of 2011 to put them into action.
Let’s talk about that energy. The refrigerator, believe it or not, accounts for one-sixth of a home’s power use. During the summer this only rises, outdone perhaps only by the air conditioning as what sucks the most electricity out of your outlet, but you can cut down on energy use significantly by keeping your refrigerator stocked up. Don’t pack it so full that air can’t circulate, but lots of cold items helps re-cool the inside faster after the door has been opened. Even jugs of water work if you don’t have the funds or the stomachs to keep a fridge full of food.
Your car’s air conditioner is another place where you can cut down easily if you go about it the right way. Everybody knows about the recirculation option available with all car A/C units, but not everybody knows how to use it the right way. The tendency is to hit both buttons as soon as the car starts, but it’s best to run the A/C alone first. This lets the air inside the car get cold before getting recirculated. Otherwise you’re just using more energy making your A/C recycle hot air.
Now we move onto the topic of earning extra income at home. You probably think the concept is ridiculous, and you’d be right if you’re picturing an actual paycheck getting received or some windfall developing out of working from your home computer part-time. But there are plenty of options available online that enable you to get a hold of a number of promotional gimmicks and other giveaways that can help you keep the weekly household budget down. Survey sites like SurveyHead are such places. All you have to do is fill out a few surveys in your spare time and they reward you with gift cards and other perks. Do enough surveys and you can even turn them in for real dough.
Summer doesn’t have to be expensive. You just need to know how to cut a few of the excesses down and find ways to supplement your income to keep stocked on the necessary summertime supplies. The annual family vacation doesn’t need to be cancelled to make ends meet so long as you stay vigilant as to ways to keep your household spending from rising with the temperature.