Work at Home: Energy & Money Saving Tips {Guest Post}

This is guest post from Jessica Cohen who blogs at  Found the Marbles, a look at social good, life and paying it forward. Connect with her on Twitter  @FoundtheMarbles.  Read her full bio below.

This is part of the Work from Home Series I started in response to questions I get about how I manage my time and obligations with my family life and businesses.

Work at Home Energy

Previous posts include:

When my husband and I both started working from that new home, we feared what it would do to our electricity bills.  We were suddenly home all the time, which prevented the money savings many families get by being out of their homes for forty plus hours per week.

So I set out to find the little tips and tricks that would help us save as much as possible while working at home.   We implemented some helpful tricks in our own home, saving both energy usage and money.   Here are some ways you too can reduce energy your energy usage:

  • Keep your electronics and appliances unplugged while not in use because even when turned off they are still consuming wasted energy.   In fact, experts believe that about 10% of your monthly energy bill may be attributed to wasted energy.   Take 10% off your monthly bill, multiply that by 12 months and I bet it will be worth it to you to unplug those appliances!   Also, be sure to unplug your phone or mobile device when it is fully charged.
  • You can purchase smart power strip outlet chargers to power down your laptops, televisions or entertainment systems automatically. Smart power strips include one or two outlets for devices that need continual power and also have controlled outlets that turn off when the item is not in use. Therefore no energy is wasted and you save time and money.   We purchased several smart power strips for our home.
  • Change your home’s air filters regularly allowing for a proper flow of air and a regulated thermostat.
  • Check out the settings on your refrigerator or freezer to see if they can be lowered a bit and still keep your food fresh.
  • If you can see easily around the room without needing to turn on the light, leave it off.     Open blinds and window shades during the day to allow natural light to flood the room.
  • When doing laundry, do not run the dryer on the cycle that keeps going until the entire load is dry.   Instead, set the timer for 40-45 minutes, depending on your dryer and the size of the load of laundry.   Then take out any dry items (since some fabrics dry faster than others), making the rest of the load smaller.  Clean out the lint filter.   Then start the dryer again for about 10-15 minutes to finish the load.   In my home we save at least ten minutes of drying time per load of laundry this way.   With about eight loads a week, we save eighty minutes less per week spent on energy to heat the dryer, 69 hours per year!
  • Call your electricity, cable and phone companies to make sure there were no hidden extras on our bills.   We saved $20 per month this way.
  • Lastly, if you live in a state with deregulated energy, consider switching the electricity portion of our electric bill to renewable energy.   We saved approximately $250 in our first year and all it took was one phone call.  (To find out more about deregulated energy, go to: http://www.wisegeek.com/what-is-energy-deregulation.htm.)

Just imagine how much we could reduce wasted electricity use if we all implemented tactics such as these in our homes.

Have you taken any measures to reduce your energy usage or to save money on your electric bills?   If so, do you have any additional tips to share?

 Jessica  

About Jessica Cohen


Jessica Cohen blogs at Found the Marbles, a look at social good, life and paying it forward. She loves highlighting organizations and people who give back, who overcome hurdles and who make others stronger in body, mind and spirit. Jessica spent 15 years in media strategy for several major consumer magazines. Today she ghost writes and works as a strategic brand and social media consultant. In her spare time Jessica shuttles her kids from karate to soccer to hockey to baseball. Connect with her on Twitter @FoundtheMarbles.

  • Jay Sisley

    Another tip if you keep your fridge or freezer full it will run less often! put water in 2 liters or milk jugs to take up space. In emergancys you can use the water to drink. Two birds as they say!

  • http://www.debtconsolidationcare.com/User/NathanielCopeland Nathaniel Copeland

    One small tip: When we charge our cell phones, we usually tend to just unplug the lead head from the phone and go about our merry way and rinse and repeat. From next time on, unplug the charger from the socket before you pack up and move. Every little bit saves a lot.

  • http://www.RobynsOnlineWorld.com/ Robyn’s Online World

    Great tips! Check your electric company website to see if they offer a free saving tool. Ours has an extensive survey you take about your home and usage and it gives you averages and tips on how to save. Really great info if you take the time to go through it all.

    • Jessica @FoundtheMarbles

      That’s a great one too, Robyn! Thanks for sharing it.

  • http://twitter.com/SenseofCents Michelle

    These are all great tips! Always looking to lower the bills.

  • Lilkidthings

    Great tips! It’s amazing how much we use during the day being home. Definitely something to think about!