Cut the power to your electricity bill
The cost of electricity has dramatically increased but there are some easy ways to save on your power bill - from shopping around for the best electricity provider to savvy changes you can make at home:
Change your energy company
Shopping around for the best electricity provider will save you some serious money. Your first stop should be Powerswitch . This free site will help you compare prices between different electricity retailers - then all you have to do is switch over to the most cost-effective provider and wait for the $$$ to roll in.
Turn off lights
What with the frantic morning rush to get the kids (and yourself) ready in the morning, it's easy to leave the house forgetting to switch off the odd light. However, just by doing a quick walk-through the house before leaving to check what electricity's being used - and turning off that stray 50-watt bulb - you could save around 5 cents in power for the eight or nine hours you're away from the house. Do that every day, and you'll save enough money on your electricity bill to splurge on a meal at a restaurant - and you'll be helping the environment.
Use the clothesline instead of the dryer
Tumble dryers are amongst the most power hungry of all household electrical appliances, and can hit your power bill by as much as $1 per load.
Switch off stand-by power
While not many busy mums have the time (or inclination) to turn off every appliance at the power source before heading out for the day, the savings to your electricity bill mean it's worth doing for longer periods - such as when you're going on a weekend away or family holiday. Unplugging a few electrical appliances from the mains might save you a couple dollars off your power bill over the course of a weekend and substantially more over a week's holiday. Pulling out the plug during your annual two-week family holiday and a few weekends away means you'll save enough to splash out on an expensive lipstick.
Moisture in your home can cause health issues - and it's expensive to heat moisture laden air. Dry your clothes outside, use extractor fans in the kitchen and bathroom and open windows regularly. Use lids on pots and think about installing a lid on your shower.
If you are able, check under your house for signs of damp or mildew. If you find some or the soil is more like mud thatn dry dirt you should look in to fixing underfloor damp. You can find out more on the Energywise webiste.
Condensation is a problem on single glazed windows. There are a whole range of double glazing options from DIY available at your local hardware store to retrofitted double glazing. Double glazing also helps with heat loss through the glass
Reduce hot water usage
A hot water wash uses 90% more power than a cold wash. Reducing your shower time and using an efficient shower head will also reduce usage.
This article was originally written by Joanna Bounds for our sister site kidspot.com.au and has been amended for use on kidspot.co.nz