Tips for Staying Warm on a Budget


' . htmlspecialchars( $aNewBlogPost['META_TITLE'] ) . 'Winter is coming, and with increased costs on gas, food, and just about everything else, it's no surprise that your energy bill might threaten to strain your budget this season, too. But there's actually a lot you can do to stay cozy and warm and reduce your energy consumption this winter. Here are some ways to save on heating.

Tip #1: Take Inventory

A good energy plan starts with a good energy audit. This means examining how your home uses energy and locating those areas where you can implement changes to make your home more efficient. Many energy companies will conduct a professional assessment, free of charge. If your local utility company does not offer this service, here are a few things to look for:

  • Leaks in windows or door frames, where cold air is getting in
  • Poor quality windows or insulation
  • Filters that need replacing
  • Find a thorough do-it-yourself home energy audit list at

Tip #2: Repair Air Leaks

Depending on where the leak is coming from, use caulk, insulation, wood, or other materials to take care of unwanted airflow. Even if you can't afford to completely fix the problem, covering the leak with plastic or an inexpensive fabric draft blocker (underneath a door, for example) can make a big difference.

Tip #3: Replace faulty windows or insulation

If you can afford to do it, installing energy-efficient windows or improving your home's insulation will go a long way in slashing your heating costs.

Tip #4: Program your thermostat

You might be surprised at how much energy you can save by just taking time to program your thermostat so that you're not wasting precious heat at night or when you're not even at home. While you're at it, try setting the temperature just a few degrees lower than you're used to, and see if your family can adjust (hey, you can always turn it back up if you need to).

Tip #5: Install a smart home system

Of course, you don't have to go through quite as much trouble to program your thermostat if you invest in a smart home energy system. These can be quite inexpensive and easy to install, and they will allow you to control your energy consumption remotely. So if you forgot to turn the heat down, no problem: you can take care of that on your phone, from wherever you are.

Tip #6: Let the sunshine in

If you get a sunny day, open up the blinds and curtains and allow the natural heat to do its magic.

Tip #7: Use a space heater or electric fireplace

If you're only using a small area of your house, warming up with a newer model space heater can save you from having to use the central heat.

Tip #8: Wear a sweater

When all else fails, your mother was right. If your home is just a tad chilly, try bundling up or wrapping yourself in a cozy blanket instead of turning up the heat that one or two degrees.

For all of your home insurance questions, call or contact Executive Insurance & Financial Services today.

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