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Keeping your heating costs down this fall and winter

To save money, remember to turn your thermostat down during the day.

To save money, remember to turn your thermostat down during the day.

Living in upstate New York, you may think that high home heating bills are just a fact of life. Our cold winters can take a big bite out of our household budgets. While oil and natural gas prices may have leveled off a bit from their peaks a few years ago, families are still paying hundreds of dollars a month to stay warm, and that's no small change. There are many simple steps that you can take to reduce your costs and we detail a few below:

Look at your thermostat

You are unlikely to notice a major change if you lower your thermostat a few degrees. It's also wise to turn down the temperature when you're not going to be at home. If you are unable to control the thermostat at various times of the day, consider buying a smart thermostat. They cost about $50 and can be programmed to turn the temperature down during times when a higher temperature is not needed. 

Keep heat from escaping

If the heat is on, all windows and doors should be closed. In addition, keep your fireplace damper sealed when not use. Due to the fact that heat rises, an open damper is similar to having a hole in the roof of your house. 

Other avenues that reduce the amount of heat in a space include unoccupied rooms. They should be closed off from the rest of the residence with their vents shut. You should also be careful of your use of ventilation fans. Bathroom and kitchen fans can quickly expel the warm air from a house. 

Consider making major changes to your house

It's possible that simple, low-cost measures won't make a significant difference in what you pay to heat your home. If this is the case, you may want to think about making significant adjustments to your house, including: 

  • Buying a new furnace or water heater - If you have a heating appliance that is over 20 years old, it's likely that you're paying more to use it than you would a newer device. There are many energy-efficient options available that are comparable in price to a conventional model. 
  • Replacing your windows – Double-paned windows are effective at keeping heat in, and cold out. While they are more expensive than regular windows, they can make a major difference in house with several rooms. 

While it's true that it costs money to save money, purchasing new energy-saving appliances for your home doesn't have to put you in the red. The federal government and some states offer tax credits to offset the cost of buying and installing new heating systems. 

If you are interested in selling a home or learning about how to increase its value, contact RealtyUSA today. Our knowledgeable agents would be happy to assist you with any of your questions.

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