4 Shockingly Simple Ways That You Can Make Your House Cheaper To Live In (Without Having to Move)
If you’ve spent any time reading about personal finance, then you already know that budgeting while trimming monthly expenses is all the rage these days.
But while it’s easy enough to drop your unused magazine subscriptions or buy store brand ketchup, those smaller expenses don’t even begin to touch the one, major expense that most Canadians have to make every month:
As it turns out, even with a fixed payment as big as the one you pay for your house, there are still ways that you can make it more affordable. So without further ado, here are 4 insanely clever ways that homeowners can make their cost of living a little cheaper.
1. Refinance Your Mortgage
“Refinance” is a word that gets thrown around a lot even when people are a bit fuzzy on what it means. But basically, mortgage refinancing is an option that involves paying off a mortgage by taking out a second one. Between the opportunity to renegotiate repayment terms and the ability to take advantage of lower interest rates, there’s a lot of opportunity here for homeowners to enjoy reduced interest payments for .
2. Lower Your Insurance Payments
In some regards, insurance is a catch-22.
On the one hand, you’re often legally obligated to carry some form of insurance. But on the other hand, there’s often a hefty bill you’re expected to pay every month that comes with it.
And because insurance is necessary, many Americans don’t realize that they have more influence over their insurance bills than they think.
Some of the ways you can lower your insurance payments include making annual payments, bundling your insurance, or shopping around for different providers. And, if you’re comfortable with it, you may even be able to reduce your deductible in order to make your monthly payments even lower. Even if you manage to shave off just $20 a month, that can still add up to a substantial sum over the course of a year.
3. Become a House Hacker
Imagine a living situation where you’ve got a mortgage but you don’t have to pay a dime towards it. Or better yet, imagine a scenario where other people are paying you to pay your mortgage.
Sounds like a geat deal, right?
House hacking is a concept that’s been blowing the minds of financially-savvy people for a while now. The gist of the idea is that one person buys a house and then rents out multiple rooms or floors in order to substantially reduce, or potentially eliminate, their own monthly mortgage payments.
If you’ve ever watched the mortgage money leave your account and thought, “Man, if I didn’t have to pay this my finances would look so much better.”, house hacking could be the solution you didn’t know you were looking for.
4. Use Less Energy
Forgetting to turn off the lights here and there is normal. But when it becomes a habit, you could find yourself with some hefty utility bills on your hands.
As it turns out, however, you don’t have to deck out your house with solar panels and wood fireplaces to trim those energy bills in the winter months. All you need is a little bit of know-how.
From easy steps like using energy efficient lightbulbs to larger and more coordinated strategies around programming your thermostat, there are plenty of ways to painlessly cut down on household energy consumption. And once you get into a routine that regularly reduces the energy you’re consuming, you should eventually see that reflected in your energy bills.
As far as regular bills that put the biggest dent in your bank account go, for most Americans, the mortgage and other home-related expenses sit at the top of the list.
And it isn’t even close.
Even though most Americans would agree that mortgages, utility bills, and insurance all need to be paid, many would be surprised to know that it’s possible to reduce these bills.
We just gave you four examples of how you can finesse your way to lower home-related expenses. Take a deep breath, take some notes, and think these tips over. Can you implement some or all of them? Try it out and see what kind of money you can save on your living expenses today.