4 handy tips to save money when the weather gets colder

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A young woman filling gas in her car at gas station stock photo

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The days are getting shorter and the weather is getting colder, which can only mean one thing: winter is coming. Given the number of major holidays during the coldest season of the year, you are looking for ways to save money right now so you can stay within your budget.

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This may be easier than you think. Here are four tips that can help you save costs while preparing for winter.

Replace air filters

You want your home to be nice and warm this winter, but that comes with a price. Specifically, the average American household can expect to spend $931 this winter — from October to March — heating their home with natural gas, up 28% from last year, according to the US Energy Information Administration.

The good news is that you can improve the efficiency of your hot air heating system by simply replacing the filter. SMO Energy recommends changing the filter at the beginning of the season to help your oven run better, but recommends more often — even once a month — if you have pets.

Buy a new car battery

Is your car battery on the older side? If so, consider getting a new one before the weather turns inclement.

Battery power decreases as temperatures drop, so more power is needed to start your car in winter, Bridgestone Tire said. If you decide to take this precaution, the company recommends choosing a battery of 600 CCA or more.

Having an old battery increases the risk of failure, which is both annoying and expensive. The national average cost of a tow is about $109 — usually between $2.50 and $7 per mile — according to JD Power.

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Avoid trendy winter clothes

When shopping for winter essentials, it’s easy to follow the latest trends – think chunky boots, Y2K, western wear, bright hues and corsets for 2022. However, these styles will likely be old and tired next year, meaning even light worn items should be replaced.

Save money by focusing on timeless winter styles that can be worn for years to come. For example, you can opt for an oversized cable knit cardigan, a collarless jacket and a pair of classic black or brown boots.

Choose to stay indoors

When the temperature drops, going outside can become largely unpleasant. So if you don’t have to go out, don’t. By staying inside, you stay nice and cozy and you also save money.

Suppose you want to see a movie. As of 2019, the average cost of a movie ticket is $9.16, according to the National Association of Theater Owners. However, you can rent movies that are currently in theaters through various streaming platforms.

For example, you can rent “Don’t Worry Darling” for $19.99 on the AMC Theaters website. Sharing this cost with at least two other people will save you money on your ticket, not to mention the cost of snacks and drinks.

Plus, you might be tempted to head to Starbucks for your daily caffeine fix. However, a venti-sized cup of freshly brewed coffee costs about $2.45, according to RealMenuPrices. Alternatively, you can get a 12-ounce bag of Starbucks Medium Roast Ground Coffee for $9.99 at Target, which can be brewed in your warm and cozy home and save you money on lots of cups.

Whether you love winter weather or spend the entire season daydreaming about summer, finding ways to save money will make the coldest season of the year more enjoyable. Apply these tips today and watch your bank balance grow.

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