Saving Money in your First Home

Guest Blogger: Chris Balme

So you have finally taken the plunge, got yourself a mortgage and bought your first home. After years of renting or co-habiting with parents, there is an initial sense of liberty as you are no longer living under somebody else’s roof. Now you are merely controlled and influenced by the myriad of different responsibilities that you face: mortgage repayments, repairs and bills amongst a million others. Here are a few tips to reducing those outgoings as much as possible.

Save Water

Sometimes it can be bewildering when looking at the water bill, trying to figure out how something naturally occurring can cost such a lot of money. Unfortunately it is one of life’s necessities and usage cannot easily be cut without significantly impacting upon life. One change that can be made to the way that the household uses water is to keep drainpipes clean at all times and attach a storage drum to the bottom. This will collect water that can be used for a number of jobs inside and outside the home.

This water could be used to water plants and grass during dry times of the year and water indoor plants. Whilst this water cannot be drank, it can be used to wash the family car.

Invest in an Energy Performance Certificate

Understanding your home is paramount and central to success in terms of reducing the costs incurred. Without understanding how your home uses energy, there will be no way of knowing how to curb it. An Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) demonstrates which parts of the home are using the most
energy and how this can be reduced. An experienced surveyor is able to use this
EPC to recommend changes to the home that will incur significant and wholly
welcome savings.

Measure Long-Term Savings over Short-Term Costs

Unless you are due for a significant raise in wage or have a financial windfall in your near future, then long-term savings may be important to consider. If your monthly incomings and outgoings stay the same then it may be difficult to start saving any real money. Installations such as low energy bulbs throughout the home may incur significant initial costs but their long-term savings often more than make up for the original outlay.

LED bulbs in particular are useful for the frugal household as they waste a lot
less energy than traditional halogen bulbs. This means that they will sap a lot
less energy and subsequently cost you less money. Furthermore, LED bulbs are
particularly noted for their long-life reducing the frequency with which they
need to be replaced, leading to lower costs again.