person holding wallet and US dollar billsHow to save money on utility bills

Utility costs like electricity, gas, water, and garbage services can take a big bite out of your monthly budget. But you’re not powerless when it comes to shrinking these expenses. With some smart usage adjustments and negotiation strategies, you can save hundreds per year on utility bills.

Compare plans and providers

Utility rates can vary significantly between providers servicing the same area. Do some comparison shopping between companies to see if you can get a better deal. Consider bundling multiple utilities with one provider for a discount.

Examining billing cycles

Utility companies bill in different cycles – some monthly, others bi-monthly. See if changing your cycle date reduces costs avoiding seasonal spikes or aligns better with when you receive paychecks.

Use less of what you pay for

Simple conservation steps like turning off lights, using ENERGY STAR appliances, reducing laundry loads, installing low-flow showerheads, and fixing dripping faucets can measurably reduce utility usage. Unplug devices when not in use to save “phantom” energy loss.

Lower your thermostat

Heating and cooling accounts for a major portion of home energy bills. Turn your thermostat down a few degrees in winter and up in summer. Clean HVAC filters regularly for maximum efficiency.

Look into eligibility for subsidies

Programs like LIHEAP provide utility bill subsidies for households below certain income thresholds. Contact your utility providers to ask about qualification for any assistance programs to reduce your costs.

Negotiate rates as a loyal customer

If you’ve been a long-time, on-time paying customer, leverage your loyalty to try to negotiate a lower rate. Threaten to switch providers if you don’t receive a discount. Following through boosts negotiating power.

Pre-pay for services

Some electric and gas utility providers offer pre-pay programs where you pay ahead for services at a fixed rate, then draw down as you use. This helps avoid billing surprises and can lower costs.

Use green power