For a work from home entrepreneur, the entire home functions as his office; it’s where he spends the majority of his work day. If he’s really interested in doing the most with his business opportunity, his eyes are constantly peeled for ways to make the work space more conducive to overall profitability. One of the simplest ways of increasing profitability is by decreasing expenditures like utility and energy expenses, something that many entrepreneurs overlook.
Saving money in this way isn’t difficult; you just have to know how to do it. So, for the entrepreneur who doesn’t want to waste money on unnecessary energy costs, here are a handful of simple energy- and money-saving tips to help increase your home business profits by decreasing daily home costs.
1. Conduct An Energy Audit On Your Home.
Some energy companies will come out to your home/office and give you a free analysis of how much energy is being wasted by the way you’re currently living, along with helpful tips on how to go about saving money.
2. Use The Thermostat Sparingly.
Most people throw away gobs of money every year by running the thermostat too high during the winter and too low during the summer. Estimates say that every degree you raise or lower the temperature of your home makes a 3% difference to your total energy expense. Experts advise keeping the thermostat below 78 in the winter and above 68 in the summer. And specifically during the winter, they recommend dropping the temperature to somewhere in the range of 60-65 while you’re sleeping or out of the house, even though the latter may not happen much when you work from home.
3. Solar Savings
Be conscious of the sun and what it’s doing to either help or hurt your energy-saving cause. Windows are where homes take in or lose a great deal of heat, so during the winter, when you want warmth, open the blinds on southerly windows while the sun is up. Let it heat your home for you. When the sun goes down, close the blinds to help trap a little of that heat that you’ve collected. And during the summer, close the blinds on those southerly windows during the day to block out the sun and open your shaded northerly windows to let heat out.
4. During The Winter, Don’t Heat Unused Rooms.
Any room in your home that you don’t use on a regular basis in the course of your work day should not be heated. Close the vents and shut the door to insulate it from the rest of the house.
5. As Much As Possible, Use Space Heaters.
The point of running the thermostat is to keep yourself warm, so if you can do that without warming the whole house, why waste money? Just put a small heater under your desk and keep yourself warm for a far lesser price.
6. Hot-Water Heater
Often homeowners and home based business owners waste a good deal of energy with their water heaters, but two things can help. First, insulate your water heater so it’s not losing heat before the water even gets to you. Second, don’t set the temperature on it any higher than 120, because you’re never going to need water that hot anyway.
7. Resist The Urge To Use Ventilation Fans During The Winter.
Though they do a great job of keeping the bathroom from fogging up after a hot shower, they also thieve a great deal of heat from your home, blasting it right out into the winter air and making your heater go through the trouble of warming the house again. When you do use it, make sure it’s not left on when it’s not needed.
You’ll undoubtedly be doing laundry while you work at home; everyone does. When you do, be sure to only run full loads. If you constantly run smaller loads, each load still uses the same amount of water, and that extra usage could add up to an unnecessary cost of $125 annually.
9. Leaky Toilet
Professionals say that a persistently running toilet can sometimes use more than 8,000 gallons of water a year, which is an outrageous amount of running water that no one wants to pay for, or listen to. Fix running toilets and leaky faucets immediately to save yourself money as well as the headache of having to listen to a running toilet.
10. Use Energy-Saving Bulbs.
They cost a little more, but they last 10-times as long as traditional bulbs, are often 4-times as bright, and use only a fraction of the electricity.
When it’s time to step away from the work desk and make lunch, use the microwave and not the oven. It may not seem like it would be a big deal, but interestingly enough, the microwave uses 50% less energy than the stove.
Finally, the simplest way to save some cash around your home business is to turn things off when you leave the room. After lunch, turn off the lights in the kitchen and shut off the radio. When you’re done with work, turn off the computer, the fax, the printer, and the lights before you head to the den to watch some TV. And when it’s time for dinner, turn off all the entertainment gear before putting the pizza in the oven. It’s obnoxious at first, but it quickly becomes a way of life.
No one expects to waste money when they purchase a business for sale, but it’s something that everyone inevitably does. These simple tips can save hundreds, if not thousands of dollars in business costs, which frees up that money for other uses, like marketing, new equipment purchases, or a hard-earned vacation. Simple, money-saving business opportunities are all around you, even if you work from home, and it’s up to you to profit from as many as you can.