OK, this is the last of them for now. These are the "I had no other comprehensive category for them" suggestions for saving money.
+ Replace your florescent & incandescent bulbs
CFL bulbs are brighter, last longer, and don't put
out heat (so you don't have to run the air conditioner to counter that heat output, or
worry about burning yourself if you bump into them, etc).
Laptops, especially with LCD screens, can be up
to 5 times more energy-efficient than a desktop. Keep your desktop unplugged
(or in a power strip that is turned OFF) to keep it from sucking phantom power
out of the outlet, and use your laptop computer whenever you can.
(BONUS: when I lived in an apartment without a
heater, I'd use my laptop on bed (on my lap, atop of the covers) before bedtime
and it made the cover toasty warm)
+ Get wood from your neighbors.
If you have a wood-burning stove or fireplace, you
shouldn't ever have to pay for firewood (assuming you live in a place where
trees grow). Even if you live in a suburb, plenty of folks are constantly
cutting down trees, trimming branches, etc. Keep your eyes open and you'll see
it everywhere. They're usually all too happy to let someone else haul it away!
You know those holidays where family is supposed to
be together, but yours lives a plane ride away? Skype is a great resource to
save you the cost of airfare. Gifts can be shipped or sent from the seller, if
necessary, and you can ask a family member to set up a laptop with Skype on it
in the main room, so you're not missing all the fun.
And always remember...you're not alone in needing to save money, and it doesn't make you a failure, a skinflint, or any negative thing to live within your means, no matter how humble those means may be.
Labels: randomness, stretching cents