After having our first child, our partner & I absolutely had to tighten our belts financially to accommodate the modern arrival in our lives.
- One of the ways the two of us tried to do this was by eliminating as several yearly payments as possible; the gym was the first to go (hence why I’m still wearing our maternity pants!), then our online subscriptions, card memberships, etc.
One bill that obviously could not be cut out was our heating & cooling bill. Instead, the two of us looked for ways to make that more efficient. The people I was with and I called our Heating & Air Conditioning provider to get some chances on what was available to us within our price range as far as energy efficient cooling systems & heating systems (our old Heating & Air Conditioning plan was starting to get a little clunky anyway). They advocated checking out cooling systems & heating systems with nice SEER scores (Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio or the benchmark for how much energy a heating system or cooling system uses to provide you a unit of cooling or heating). The Heating & Air Conditioning provider also advocated looking into smart thermostats. Smart thermostats/programmable thermostats allow you to set the home to unusual temperatures when you are home or away to help save on that yearly heating & cooling bill. With what the two of us had set aside in savings for our Heating & Air Conditioning updates, the two of us purchased heating & cooling units with terrific SEER scores & sprung for the smart thermostat to help cut costs when we’re away from the house. These investments entirely paid for themselves within a few weeks (maybe with the savings I can start up that gym membership again to get back into our pre-baby jeans!)