Heating bills set to rise this winter: how to deal with them
When you own a home, it’s not just your mortgage that you need to worry about. You also have to pay to maintain your home, as well as to cool and heat it. The latter may prove to be quite expensive this winter.
Natural gas prices are on the rise
At the end of September, the cost of natural gas was up more than 180% from the previous year. In total, consumers have been watching the most expensive gas prices since February 2014.
All of this comes at a time when the cost of everyday goods, from gasoline to groceries, is increasing due to soaring inflation. But for homeowners on a tight budget, rising gasoline costs could really prove to be problematic and put many people at risk of going into debt.
How to deal with rising heating costs
At this point, it’s important to accept the fact that heating bills will go up this winter. If you live primarily on a paycheck with no savings to lean on, that alone could be a major financial strain.
But there are things you can do to ease the pain. First of all, pay attention to the way you heat your house. If you’re at the office all day and your kids are at school, set your thermostat to a much lower temperature and only turn it up when you’re actually home.
Lowering your thermostat overnight could also go a long way. It won’t cost you anything to take out the extra blankets you already have, but it will will cost more to keep your house a few degrees warmer while people are sleeping.
Yet strategically heating your home may not go very far. On top of that, take a close look at your household budget and see if there are any bills you can cut.
If you already lead a very clean life, there may not be one. But if not, canceling the cable for the winter months may be a reasonable step to take if you just can’t afford your higher heating bills and don’t want to go into debt.
Another option to consider is finding a second job to increase your income. If you choose a flexible side activity that only puts you in work a few extra hours a week, that alone could allow you to manage your growing heating bills without stress. This extra money could also come in handy to cover higher food costs and daily bills.
Getting a second job could also help you save money. That way, if inflation continues to point its head, you will have a cushion in case your pay falls short and you are forced to give up your side job due to scheduling constraints.
Don’t stay in the cold
It is important to have a house where it is good to live. But this winter, that could mean spending more money than ever on heating bills. Take the above steps to ease the burden and increase your chances of going through the season debt free.