While many of us are currently focused on our taxes at the moment, often calling upon our accountant or financial adviser for the best ways to optimize our refunds, we need to remember that springtime represents more than just tax season. The warmer weather spring brings also makes it a great time for savings. A few ways in which the season can save us money for future investments include:
Mild Temps Mean No Need for the Heater
Spring is one of only two seasons in which most of us whom live in temperate climates can save money on our electric bill. Maintaining warm household temps in the winter and cooler temps in the summer can be a huge drain on our monthly budgets. Spring's mild temps, however, allow us to open our windows instead of turning on our heaters or air conditioners which can save you big time on that heating and cooling bill.
Even if temps are perfect for you yet, still turn the HVAC off. If it gets a bit chillier at night simply grab an extra blanket. Your budget will thank you for it later, especially when those high summer temps have your air conditioner running 24/7.
Trade Expensive Entertainment for the Outdoors
Temperatures are warming up and the sun is finally starting to stay out for more than what seemed like a few hours so take advantage of it in your free time. Instead of opting to see a movie, pay for an expensive indoor concert venue, or paying for another indoor activity, head outdoors for cheaper or free entertainment.
Most cities will offer great and inexpensive, if not free, outdoor entertainment such as Shakespeare in the Park or concerts put on by local bands, and simply walking around the local botanical garden or park can offer nice, relaxing entertainment on a perfect Spring night. And if you live in an area with a great trail system, don't be afraid to load up the car and go hiking, biking, or trail running – activities that will both help your waistline and your wallet.
Get Your Garden Ready
Whether you live in a city apartment, a suburban home, or a hobby farm, you can always grow your own food to reduce your food costs. While those living without a yard or only a small yard will be limited to how much they can grow, planting a few vegetable plants in pots or creating a countertop herb garden can save you several dollars over the long haul – not to mention, you will have great, fresh produce to enjoy.
Look online or purchase a farmer's almanac to see when is the best time to plant for your area. Usually when spring begins, you can pot your plants in your home and move them outside later to get an early start.
While the above tips are great short term money savers, they are by no means long-term solutions. Simply little aids that can help you save during the spring months. If you find yourself struggling to determine how to save and how much to save, don't be afraid to contact a specialist. Financial advisers and planners can help you come up with long term strategies that will help you meet your financial goals over the course of your working years.
This is a guest post by Amanda Green.