Every month, our utility bills come in the mail like clockwork. Some months the balance is high and sometimes we catch a break. Learn here about ways to lower utility bills and save money.

Check with utility companies about payment plans. When you enter into a plan, your monthly payment is calculated according to the average of your bill for the last twelve months. The monthly payment may be above or below what the actual amount of the service is. At the end of the year, your account will be credited for the average, or you will be billed for any excess charges. As far as budgeting on a monthly basis, a payment plan ensures that you can count on a constant payment.

When you use hot water, energy is needed to heat the water to a certain temperature. Using a lot of hot water will not only raise your water bill but also the gas or electric bill. Cut costs and save money by washing clothing in cold water. Cold water is more energy efficient.

As far as water goes, investing in faucet aerators and low-flow shower heads reduce the amount of water that's used. A low-flow head also provides better spray while using less water. If you or members of your family enjoy long showers, less water is going down the drain.

Using a dishwasher also reduces your water bill. A dishwasher uses a certain amount of water to wash a load of dishes. When you wash by hand, more water is used because you fill up the sink or basin once for dishes and once for pans. You also run the faucet to rinse them. As long as you have a full load, you waste less water in a dishwasher.

Lowering the temperature on your hot water heater is a good way to cut back on heating costs. It takes less energy to raise the temperature twenty degrees instead of fifty. At a lower setting everyone will get used to a more tepid temperature.

Purchasing energy-efficient appliances will also save you money. On the front label it details how much money you save each time you use it compared to an appliance that is not energy efficient. If it is time to replace your old appliances, remember to go green.

Speaking of changing, most homes have double or triple-paned windows installed. If you live in an older house, this may not be the case. Windows that are not sealed well can let out lots of heat or air conditioning, which means in essence that you are paying to heat the outdoors. Stop losing money around your windows by replacing them. Many replacement window companies offer financing plans so that you can get your windows now and start cutting those utility bills.

Are you looking to cut utility bills? Contact your local power company for a free home efficiency assessment. They can tell you where you are spending big dollars and suggest more ways to save on energy.

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