July 14, 2024
4 Home Habits That Are Costing You More Than You Think

There are many activities commonly done around the household that many Americans may not think twice about when they go about their routines that are costing them money. However, many home habits — like washing your clothes — should be reevaluated.

Several household habits that consumers practice may be costing them more money than they realize. Fortunately, by being more mindful of your utilities and making yourself aware of the true cost of these routine tasks, you can go about them in a way that is more financially savvy and better for your wallet.

Here are the common home habits consumers do that may cost them more than they realize:

Doing Your Laundry Too Often

Many American consumers wash their clothes way more often than actually necessary. According to an interview with Vogue, Levi’s had said that their jeans should only be washed after every 10 wears but consumers in the U.S. usually wash after every two or three wears. Washing your laundry too often uses more water and electricity than you need and hikes up your utility bills. 

Other clothing items, like wool garments, are frequently overwashed and should preferably be spot-treated, steamed or taken to a dry cleaner rather than thrown in the washing machine.

To save money on this costly chore, only wash your clothes after the recommended number of wears or choose less costly alternatives to cleaning your clothes. Also, using cold water, air-drying instead of tumble drying and not spending money on harmful or useless products like scent beads and fabric softener can save both your wallet and the environment.

Leaving Things Plugged In

Even if appliances aren’t in use, leaving them plugged in still drains power and increases your electricity bill. According to an article from San Patricio Electric Cooperative, Inc., electronic devices such as your coffee machine, phone charger and TV all draw power from your outlets, even when turned off. When devices are turned off but still plugged in, they turn to standby mode, resulting in phantom drain.

According to Energy Star, unplugging these devices that aren’t in use could save the average American family around $100 a year.

Not Cleaning Your Gutters

Although it’s recommended you clean your gutters twice a year, many people don’t get around to doing it when they should.

However, this often leads to water damage on your roof and added expenses that could have been avoided. If you can’t do it yourself, hiring a gutter cleaning company may be a more affordable alternative than potential water damage to your home or property.

Wasting Food

Compared to every other country in the world, America wastes the most food – nearly 60 million tons every year. Also, more than 80% of Americans throw out perfectly good food because they don’t understand expiration dates, according to Recycle Track Systems. Essentially, many U.S. households are wasting money by throwing out food that isn’t even expired.

To save money and reduce the amount of food waste in your home, try freezing foods that can’t be eaten right away, planning your meals ahead of time or taking the time to interpret the expiration labels on food items.

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