In times like these, most of us are trying to save as much money as possible for our daily necessities. However, since almost everyone is at home now on self-quarantine due to the pandemic that we are in, the chances of seeing a rise in our utility bill are very high. Compared to before, now everyone in the family is indoors, meaning to say that way more electricity and water is being used per day.

The Singapore government has given out a hundred dollars to all households with at least one Singapore member living in it. This is done as part of the new $33 billion Fortitude Budget that the government has rolled out in order to help ease the financial burden its people are facing. This initiative is called the Solidarity Utilities Credit and is a one-time thing that will help to pay for your utility bills in either the month of July or August.

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However, this only solves the problem in the short run. What about later on in the future? What can we do to ensure that we can still live relatively comfortably while not spending too much? Here are a few tips!

1- Hang dry your clothes instead of using the dryer

Convenience is always the preferred choice. However, did you know that you can save money by simply hanging your laundry out after it has been washed instead of using the dryer? While it does take some time and much more effort than simply throwing it in the dryer and turning a few knobs, it can greatly reduce the amount of money spent on electricity.

Another way to help reduce the amount of electricity being used is to opt for appliances with at least four ticks on their Energy Label Ratings. These appliances are more energy-efficient as well!

2-Air conditioning, is it a necessity?

While the weather in Singapore can be quite hot, having an air conditioner on for most periods of your day can cause the utility bill to increase quite significantly. A window air conditioner is said to use up to 680 kWh in a month. As such, install a ceiling fan instead to help ventilate and keep the room cool. Open up the windows too!

Note that when it comes to air conditioners, it is a good habit to clean it regularly. This is because the filters of these air conditioners might be clogged up with dirt. When this happens, it reduces the amount of cold air being blown out and thus more energy and time are used to help bring your room to your desired temperature.

3-Choose an electricity provider that works best for you

Singapore now has an Open Electricity Market (OEM). This means that there is more competition out there, allowing you to have more options to choose from. With the presence of an open electricity market, the various OEM retailers will be actively putting out promotions and packages to try and attract customers into choosing them. Pick one that best suits your needs and helps you to save the most amount of money. It may also help to learn more about the sp tariff.

4-Have water saving kits installed in your apartment

In actuality, we use a lot of water for our daily needs, be it showering or washing the dishes. All these accumulated together can bring up your utility bill. One good way to help solve this problem is to install water-saving kits around your house, for your showerheads and taps. The Public Utility Board here in Singapore provides every household with a water-saving kit. All you have to do is make a request for it and receive them for free. The kit comes with a set of thimbles with three or four holes. This allows you to choose the rate at which water flows. It is said to help reduce your water bill by five percent.

5-Choose energy-efficient light bulbs

The option of having LED bulbs or compact fluorescent lights is better compared to the regular incandescent light bulbs. This is because less energy is being used in both the LED and fluorescent light bulbs. For example, LED light bulbs release most of their energy through light. As such, less energy is needed to have the same amount of brightness a traditional light bulb would emit. According to the National Environment Agency (NEA), traditional light bulbs have most of their energy converted to heat instead of light.

6-Check your broadband, cable or mobile subscriptions

If your subscription to your broadband, cable or mobile service is over four years old, it is a good time to make a switch. This is because having a subscription that old means that you are most likely paying more than what you should be with the current plans available to you.

As such, it is good to review your current plans for these three areas. In the event that you wish to make a switch, be sure to read up and understand the various options out there and choose one that works best with you. The government has issued out a scheme (Home Access Scheme) which allows some families to apply for a subsidized plan for much faster Internet.

7-Get rebates with your credit cards!

What sounds better than getting cash back on your purchases? Certain banks offer you cash rebates whenever you use their cash rebate credit cash to make your payments. The more you use their credit cards the more rebates you get as you accumulate a bill payment option with the bank of your choice. Some banks with this scheme include HSBC Visa Platinum and UOB One Card.

Hopefully, this list has given you a better idea of what steps to take next when it comes to reducing the amount of money you fork out every month on your utility bills. Be it using more energy-efficient applications, installing water-saving kits at home, or signing up for a cash rebate credit card, the main goal is to lower your costs!

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