Spring cleaning checklist for your home: 5 budget-boosting tasks
Spring means fresh thinking, and these five ideas make sure money-saving household changes aren’t overlooked during the seasonal deep clean.
Many home spring cleaning tasks affect your budget and household finances beyond a few months. Don’t underestimate how small seasonal changes—from a closet clean-out to being picky about the lightbulbs you choose—can save you money over time. Use these five simple spring cleaning tips for a clean sweep of your budget.
Spring cleaning tip #1: Clean your gutters
For many homeowners, it’s the tasks that they can’t see that make a bit difference throughout the year. But a seasonal sweep and inspection of gutters and downspouts can certainly lead to money savings down the road. Keeping an eye on your gutters ensures you’re aware of any leaking or loosening issues right away that could lead to expensive and avoidable repairs—or replacements—to your roof and/or exterior.
The National Center for Healthy Homes recommends homeowners clean their gutters and downspouts every spring and fall as part of optimal yard and exterior maintenance.
Spring cleaning tip #2: Invest in reusable “paper” towels
Did you know that 45.3 million Americans used eight or more packs of paper towels in 2020? While it may have been a particularly busy year for paper consumption in the U.S., now is a great time to rethink or reduce your reliance on the kitchen staple. For a cheaper option, consider swapping out disposable paper towels for kitchen towels that can be washed along with the rest of your laundry.
Spring cleaning tip #3: Switch to energy-efficient lightbulbs
Transitioning from traditional incandescent lightbulbs to energy-efficient lightbulbs not only benefits the environment by reducing greenhouse gas emissions, but it can help you save big on your energy bill over time.
Energy-efficient lightbulbs that come with an ENERGY STAR certification mean that the product has met guidelines set by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). Not surprisingly, these bulbs last longer than traditional ones—and according to the EPA, they use up to 90% less energy and can save you about $50 in electricity costs over one bulb’s lifetime.
Spring cleaning tip #4: Clean out your closet
Beyond sparking joy, giving your closet a spring clean and reevaluating what you actually need in a wardrobe can help your budget in at least a couple of ways. First, you’ll be less likely to purchase items similar to those you already own but may have forgotten about, cutting down on wasted expenses.
Second, for clothes you know you won’t wear again or at least not with any regularity, split them into donate and sell piles. According to online consignment and thrift store thredUP’s annual report, the booming secondhand apparel market is projected to reach $64 billion in sales by 2025. So, sell those nice clothes you didn’t wear as often as you thought you would and earn back some of that money you can save or put toward something else.
Spring cleaning tip #5: Clean your air conditioning units, vents and change HVAC filters
Whether you have external AC units in your home or a central HVAC system, vents on both systems can accumulate dust, pollen, pet dander and other airborne particles you don’t want hanging around in your air. Remove vent covers, wash them with warm soapy water and allow them to air dry. After that, install a new filter in your HVAC system. A fresh filter helps air flow through and can lower your AC consumption by 5-15%, which means you save money on your electric bill.
For more ways to save, check out these nine tips to help you budget and keep more money in your pocket.