When winter hits, so do the unexpected expenses. From sudden home repairs like frozen pipes to purchasing seasonal gifts or booking expensive flights to visit family members, winter expenses can add up fast. Looking for ways to get ahead of the season? It can be hard to know how to save money on short notice, but it’s simple with the right preparation and knowledge of seasonal deals.
Anticipate your winter expenses with these six money-saving tips.
6 money-saving tips for winter
Many people work hard all year for their money but feel lost when it comes to knowing how to save money. Give yourself the gift of financial stability this winter season by being smart with your spending and savings habits. Why not start the new year with some extra change in your pocket?
1. Lower heating and electricity bills
Cutting down on electricity bills is a constant battle for many, and the answer to doing so is usually pretty simple. Turn the heat down before leaving the house this winter.
If you have a larger home, consider closing doors to parts of the house you’re not planning on spending time in so the heat can collect in a smaller area. Feeling extra conservative? Throw on an extra layer or start a fire, rather than raising the thermostat for a more cost-effective way to warm up.
2. Save on gas
Cars often work overtime in the winter, making stops for gas more frequent. Consider inflating your car tires more often than usual, as cold weather can deplete tire pressure — which effectively drains resistance in tires.
And while it can be tempting to remote start your car so it gets warm before you walk across the parking lot, this convenience wastes gas. Instead, look for underground parking when possible or keep a blanket in your car to help you stay warm in a few minutes as the car heats up.
3. Take advantage of seasonal deals
Many businesses offer seasonal deals to maintain sales during their winter quarter, such as during Black Friday or over Valentine’s Day. Get-in on those seasonal deals!
Plan ahead by looking for deals on the items you wish to purchase for family and friends. If waiting in crazy lines for discounts on limited supplies isn’t your cup of tea, try looking online for cyber-sales at your favorite stores.
4. Cook at home
Shared meals with family and friends are one of the greatest joys of the winter season. While going out to eat can still be an occasional treat, doing so in excess is an unnecessary area of spending.
Are you hosting a holiday event this winter? Consider inviting friends and family to your home instead of making reservations at a restaurant. You’ll save money, and provide your guests with the memorable experience of coming to your home. Why brave the weather when you can stay in, cook at home, and save money in the process?
5. Avoid winter fast fashion
There’s no doubt that when winter comes around you’ll want a heavy, warm jacket and all the right accessories. But don’t be tempted by the latest styles bombarding you on social media, purchase classic winter clothes that you can use from year to year with colors that generally stay in style for more than one season.
If you do need to make a larger purchase this year — like a new winter jacket — shop around to get the best deal. Don’t be afraid of cost-saving thrifting, either! Not only can you find gently used apparel at a steep discount, you can create a look that’s stylish and unique.
You might also want to consider a subscription to a clothing rental service so you can effectively rent a winter jacket for the coldest months. Price this option out with a realistic comparison to your clothing spending habits to see if it would make financial sense for you.
6. Opt for energy-efficient decor
Decorating during the winter season is a must for many families. Outdoor lighting displays are a favorite when it comes to completing a festive look, which can be an energy guzzler and run up your power bill.
LED-powered light strands can cost a bit more upfront but energy-efficient holiday decor can save you money when used over time. Not to mention, LED lights are incredibly durable, meaning they can be used annually for years to come. Do the environment and your wallet a favor and invest in energy-efficient decor.