When you dreamt of working from home, you imagined all the money you’d save. Commuting costs, spending tons of cash on fancy clothes to wear to work, and expensive lunches would be a thing of the past. But now that you’re working from home, you’re starting to see that it’s not as expense-free as you once thought. Luckily, there are ways to keep your costs down when you work from home. Here are just three of them. Your budget will surely thank you for it.
Conserve your electricity.
In the office, you didn’t think twice about having every single piece of equipment on simultaneously—and leaving everything on all night, too. Thing is, you don’t want your electric bill to rival all of your previous in-office costs, either. So be conservative when working in your home office. Only have equipment turned on that you’re using, and leave the rest off. Let some light shine in (literally) by opening blinds and scoring some free office lighting—and vitamin D, too. Use fans in the summer and portable heaters in the winter. After all, there’s no need to heat your entire house when you work from home. You’ll be guaranteed to see some instant savings!
Love your leftovers.
Ahh, you used to love those design-your-own salads from the salad bar downstairs at your previous job. (Your budget may not have loved the hefty price tag that accompanied your grilled chicken and spinach mixed salad, though.) When you work at home, ditch your takeout menus and learn to love last night’s lasagna. By raiding your fridge for lunch each day, you’ll not only save the shrimp scampi from getting tossed into the garbage, but you’ll be able to pad something other than your waistline—your bank account.
Care for your equipment.
When you worked in an office, it didn’t matter if your computer froze; you simply called IT. But now that you have a telecommuting job, you are the IT department. It can get pretty expensive to take your office equipment in to be checked, fixed, or worse, replaced. So be careful to take the best care possible of your stuff. Make sure that all of your equipment is covered under a warranty, and get into the habit of powering down your computer at night, too. To get the most out of your equipment—and to protect it, too—plug each and every piece of office equipment into a surge protector to prevent it from potentially getting fried.
It’s true that working at home will save you a considerable amount of money. There are fast fixes to bring your bills down in a flash, and also long-term tricks to prevent you from having to shell out big bucks in the future. That way, you can take advantage of all the cost savings associated with working from home, in addition to the most priceless benefit of all—work-life balance.