Can You Cut Down Your Winter Budget?

Can You Cut Down Your Winter Budget? 

The days are getting shorter, the nights are longer, and the weather is overall cooler. Welcome to the winter months! While there are many things to be excited about, such as a soul-warming Thanksgiving recipe or preparing for the snow of the season, winter also comes at a cost. Your energy bills are going up! For a lot of households, energy bills have already registered an alarming peak during the first wave of the pandemic, as everyone has been staying at home. 

Additionally, we all fall victim to mild seasonal affective disorder symptoms. SAD can lead to a depressive mood, making it hard to stay warm. As a result, you are more likely to make “costly” decisions, such as ordering takeaway food or grabbing a coffee on the go to keep your hands warm. 

 

Is there anything you can do to manage your winter costs? Turning down the heater is not a viable solution. But you can use some smart tips and tricks to reduce financial pressure without making the household uncomfortable. 

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Create a clear goal 

As savings go, you can’t just start putting money aside without any clear objective. Indeed, you are more likely to keep your costs down if you understand what you’re trying to achieve. If you are looking to raise a specific amount, you can use smart tools, such as the Pigly.Com savings calculator, to help design a strategy. Additionally, you can also define how much you want to save throughout the winter, as this will act as your success goal. Say you want to save $2,000 over the winter months. Your savings plan can help you highlight the areas where you can cut down on expenses and the time it’ll take to reach your goal. 

 

What does a goal matter? Because you don’t know what success looks like if you don’t decide what you want to achieve. Start by checking your bills and expenses from the previous years to estimate how much you want to save. 

 

Cut down your grocery shopping

Here’s an interesting question for you: Does your grocery shopping feel more expensive in winter? You’d be surprised to find out that households typically buy more food during the colder months of the year. This has to do with the way the metabolism works. Your body burns more energy to maintain its temperature in winter. Therefore, hearty meals are a good idea to maintain a slow-burning source of energy throughout the day. 

Even if you are not familiar with human metabolic functions, most people instinctively eat more in winter. In other words, you can expect to spend more on food. However, you can reduce some of the grocery costs through your backyard garden. Growing your own vegetables and roots in winter can offer a budget-friendly alternative. You can grow squashes, potatoes, carrots, beetroots, turnips, and green cabbages, for instance. These are the ideal components of a homemade stew, without any of the costs! 

 

Insulation 101

Most properties lose some heat in winter. Your insulation is the most likely culprit. Thankfully, you can easily update an old insulation system without breaking the bank. For instance, you can change your attic insulation over the course of a weekend. Indeed, in a poorly insulated attic, cold air can come in. As a result, you’ll need to heat the house even more to compensate. 

 

Another common area that can benefit from getting insulated in your basement. The basement is often humid and cold. However, most homeowners can waterproof their basement and add insulation sheets on the walls, floor, and ceiling. 

 

Embrace spiced teas

Why is spiced tea a better alternative to the traditional cup of coffee? The simple answer is that spices help to warm your body from within. A spiced tea can raise your core body temperature more effectively and significantly than a cup of coffee. The phenomenon is called thermogenesis. Choosing teas that contain cardamom, cinnamon, cloves, and ginger, for instance, can pack a healthy heat boost! 

 

Make a point of cooking from scratch

Cooking from scratch offers many advantages. Firstly, it means that you are in control of the ingredients. Rather than relying on food-processed meals or heavy sugar and fat loads – which is everything we crave in winter! –, you can cook a hearty meal with yummy thermogenering spices. Secondly, cooking at home increases the temperature indoor. It’s a good idea, for instance, to plan an oven-heated meal in the evening, as the oven will keep your home warm for longer. 

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In conclusion, you can help your body stay warm this winter without fearing the high grocery or energy costs. While it’s important to stay comfortable when the weather gets cold, you’d be surprised by how much difference simple switches of your habits can make. Stay warm without the financial burden this winter! 

 

Make Preparing For A Party Much Easier

Whatever the occasion might be, it’s always fun to have a party – but somewhat less fun to plan one. If you are a little worried about an upcoming party you have in store, and you feel you might need some help with planning it, then the good news is that there are plenty of resources to help you out with that. Overall, however, it can help just to know what kinds of things you should focus on so that you can feel more ready and make the most of it as well. In this post, we are going to take a look at a number of the things that you can do to make preparing for a party considerably easier and even more enjoyable. As long as you have considered the following, you will find that preparing for that party is going to be a walk in the park – and you might even start to look forward to the next time you need to plan for something of that sort.

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Reducing Costs

 

Arguably one of the most common worries that many people face here is that they are concerned with the costs of the party and how they will make it work. Knowing how you are going to afford a party is something which can take a lot of time to get right, but it is essential if you are to make sure that the rest of the process falls into line as well in the way that you would like and expect. One of the first things to do therefore is to make a list of everything that you are going to need to buy, and the likely costs of it. Having it all clear in front of you in that manner will help you greatly in ensuring that you can get the funds together. You will then want to think about any possible alternative ways in which you can source the things that you are likely to spend the most. That could be as simple as finding wine for sale online or it could be that you need to think about searching around for a cheaper venue – possibly even using your own home or the home of someone close to you. However you do it, finding ways to reduce costs is bound to help you feel better about the party on the whole, and it will mean that you are going to be able to keep the stress at bay much more effectively too.

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Starting Early

 

It is much more likely that you will become stressed if you don’t give yourself the time to properly prepare, so one of the best things you can do is to make sure that you start planning for the party early. You can’t start too soon, especially if you are going to be booking a venue, live entertainment or catering – all of which can get booked up early, especially if they are in high demand. The earlier you start, the more you will get done, and the closer it will all be to the image you had in your head of what you wanted to achieve. It doesn’t mean that you need to get it all sorted early on either – merely that starting with some aspects of it can help you to get the ball rolling, and feel better and less stressed about it on the whole as well. This is a simple and extremely effective way of making it much easier on yourself to prepare a party of any kind.

 

Sending Invites

Obviously enough, you can’t have a party without any guests, so you will need to make sure that you are inviting people as and when you can if you are to make it a success. Again, earlier is better, although if you go too early on this you can end up making it so that people forget to attend. You will want to think about how you are inviting people, as that can make a difference too. Here, it is best to do what is easiest not just for you but for others too. For formal events, a postal invitation is probably the best way, but for many other occasions, you might find that an invite on social media will suffice, and can be a lot easier too. It’s all about judging what is best and going for that. As long as you get this right, you will know that you can end up with the right amount of guests – and that will make for a much more successful party on the whole.