Summer Savings Tip: Turn off the lights!

According to the U.S. Department of Energy, the average household dedicates about 5% of its energy budget to lighting.Summer Savings Tip: Turn the lights off

It’s an easy budget to start trimming, and here are tips to get you started:

Make the switch
Switching to energy-efficient lighting is one of the fastest ways to cut your energy bills, and you have lots of choices, including halogen incandescents, compact fluorescent lamps (CFLs) and light-emitting diodes (LEDs). Energy-efficient bulbs may cost more than ones you’re used to, but you’ll save over their lifetime.

Visit Energy Star to find the right light bulbs for your fixtures.

Off vs On
Think twice about that old electricity myth that says it uses more electricity to turn a light back on than it does to keep it on. Today’s basic wisdom suggests that, depending on the type of light, you’re apt to save by turning it off, no matter how short the duration before you’ll be turning it on again.

Time out
Use timers and motion sensors to automatically control the amount of electricity you use. Dimmers also provide savings.

Natural light
Take advantage of daylight by keeping your curtains, blinds or shades open, or using curtains that allow daylight in. When you’re decorating, remember that lighter colors reflect daylight and enhance available natural light in a room.

Crunch the numbers
Curious how much you might save — in terms of dollars or energy — by turning off the lights when you leave the house? It could add up. Check out this breakdown at The Simple Dollar.

Find more tips!
Looking to save even more? Visit websites for your local utilities, including the Southern Maryland Electric Cooperative (SMECO), for more energy saving tips on everything from appliances to heating and cooling.

Is your family good about turning off the lights?

Summer Saving Tip: Pack a Lunch

Let’s face it, heading out to the local restaurant, sub shop or pizza parlor every work day can be a budget buster. Don’t believe it?

Take a typical lunch tab, multiply it by 5 and then by the number of weeks you work each year. Sit back and marvel at the total! Then imagine whittling that number down, down and down — and imagine the savings if you brought your lunch to work. You could be talking $1,000, $2,000 or even $3,000 a year! Continue reading

Summer Savings Tip — Cut your caffeine budget!

What’s your coffee count? How many cups do you drink in a day?  In a week, a month, a year?

CBS News says that more than 50 percent of Americans drink coffee every day. And not just one cup, but three to four cups.

That’s a lot of caffeine — and a lot of cash out of your pocket. That caffeine jolt could easily be costing you $1,000 a year or more depending on your coffee destination and what you order once you’re there.

There are ways to trim down your coffee expenses without quitting cold turkey or cutting your consumption dramatically. Here are a few: Continue reading

Summer Savings Tip: Clip coupons!

You’ve decided to save money this summer – good for you! Community Bank of Tri-County is here with support. Be on the lookout for our Summer Saving Tips series, starting with this simple, money saving tip – clip coupons!

From blogs, to TV shows and classes couponing has gone from an act reserved for Sunday morning with the newspaper to T.V. entertainment and an obsession for people across the country. We are excited about all the attention saving money is getting, because it’s a smart thing to do – through good economic times and bad.

Ready to clip? Consider these tips: Continue reading