My hubby is a heating and air conditioning sales manager (technician for almost 20 yrs) and he has taught me that cleaning your filters can keep your system running more efficiently and its something anyone can do. Also your if you cant afford to update to a more efficient heating/air system then change your thermostat to a more efficient one that has a timer to use less when you're not at home or in bed.
It's really hard for me to throw away paperwork - always afraid I'll need it. I'm using a free pdf maker program on my pc and scanning documents, filling them on a portable hard drive, and then shredding the paperwork. Periodically I backup onto DVD's. I also recycle the shredded paperwork to get it out of the house.
I've listed out all of my bills starting with the least amount I owe, to the most. Each month, I usually try to double my minimum payments (when possible) & work on paying the first off. Once it's paid off, then apply that amount to the next bill. You're already use to paying that bill anyways, so using it to pay off more on the next, will only get your amount paid off faster!
I really, really hate processing mail and papers, so I do it for 5 minutes a day. I set a timer and challenge myself to get as much done as possible before it rings. Keeps me from getting overwhelmed and gives me a sense of accomplishment.
We're now serious about not wasting electricity. We have convinced ourselves to look at each light bulb, radio, fan, etc. as water faucets for electricity. Would you wash your hands and walk away leaving the faucet to run all day? Of course not! Keep reading... there's more...
I used to scramble to pay life insurance once a year or car insurance twice, because it wasn't a bill that came due every month. Now I make a list of every bill like that, add up the estimated costs & divide by 12. I save at least that every month to cover those bills.
I use a box [something like a bread box but square] and in it is writing paper, stamps, envelopes, stickers, specialty pens, and pre-printed address of the most common places I write to and this includes bills. It's faster and easier to have everything in one place to mail anything includig packages
Have something you need to save for? Don't get stuck unable to pay the bill! Make envelopes (i.e. tire fund, school clothes, birthday shopping) with titles on them and place them in your bill area. Don't keep them elsewhere or you might not look at them like bills that will need to be paid.
We usually make monthly budgest, the mortgage/rent, phone, electricity, gasoline, etc. But, don't forget all those yearly bills--normally the ones that come due the first of the year. Not always the best timing with the hoidays and all!
On payday I put all but $40 in the bank. But when I get 2 - $20 bills, it is too easy to just give one up to my spouse if he needs it. Then my son comes, and he needs lunch money for school. Then I end up with nothing. Continued below.
Every payday I get up thirty minutes early and pay all my bills online- car, phone, rent, utilities, student loan and credit card, plus I set aside short- and long-term savings. Then, I know exactly how much fun spending money I've got for the rest of the month!
Remember sitting in Math class and wondering why you needed to know Math after high school? Especially calculus and advanced algebra? I'll tell you why you need it...