Each year, millions of consumers across the country may decide that they need to start saving more money, whether it's to pay for other expenses, pay down debt, or build an emergency savings account. There are, of course, many ways to do this, but some of the best methods actually start at home.
One of the biggest things on which consumers end up spending a lot of money over the course of a year is the cost of heating or cooling their homes. In the winter, gas can get very expensive, and energy bills tend to go up sharply in the summer as air conditioning becomes necessary. But taking basic steps like turning the thermostat down two degrees in the winter, or dialing the A.C. back a little bit in the summer can add up to hundreds of dollars worth of savings over the course of the year. Often, programmable thermostats and other such devices can pay for themselves several times over in a short period as a result.
What else can be done?
Consumers who are looking to save may also want to think about cutting back on their cable. These bills alone can add up to hundreds of dollars each month, and discontinuing them may not be easy for some Americans, but it can be very helpful when it comes to saving. In addition, a number of lower-cost services like Hulu, Amazon Prime, Netflix, and HBO Now can be a pretty helpful replacement at a fraction of the cost.
What else to keep in mind about finances
In addition to finding new ways to save money, though, consumers who want to improve their current financial footing may also be able to put themselves in a much better position when it comes to their credit standing. While there are many ways that a traditional credit score can be harmful to consumers who have struggled financially, alternative credit scores - including those from PRBC - can go a long way in the opposite direction.
The reason for this is simple: In much the same way that saving money around the house can free up some extra cash that can be used to great benefit, the different type of reporting that goes into alternative scores can also be a huge benefit. That's because alternative scores take into account not just how consumers handle their credit - and traditional ratings do that exclusively - but also how they handle their other monthly expenses.
For instance, that can include monthly payments for rent, utilities, cellphone bills, and other things that can be tracked from one month to the next. With this in mind, consumers will be able to demonstrate a positive payment history even if they don't have much history when it comes to dealing with credit or, indeed, any at all.
And combining that kind of positive movement with the ability to save money around the house as a means of building up an emergency savings account or paying down any outstanding debt will likely be extremely beneficial to a person's overall financial situation going forward.