There are tons of ways to save money even when you are hosting summer guests for a weekend visit or even just for an afternoon barbecue. Though we don’t want to think about the extra expense being the hostess with the mostest entails, it can add up. Big time. To help you save as many Tubmans as you can, here are 6 quick and easy things you can do when you are hosting summer guests.
Before Hosting Summer Guests
- Replace old appliances with ENERGY STAR® appliances. It might not seem like it at first when you are doling out thecash for new appliances, but they really will save you money in the long run on operating costs. Having an energy-efficient refrigerator, dishwasher and clothes washer can also save energy which means you are doing something good for our planet too. Thank you. SCANA Energy has some great tips for buying energy efficient appliances. They say when shopping for a new gas range, consider a pilotless ignition system because it uses less gas than models with a continuously burning pilot. When shopping for a new clothes dryer, you should consider a “moisture sensing” device that shuts off automatically when your clothes are dry. Check out more tips from SCANA Energy here.
- Provide some shade for your air-conditioning unit. This will increase its efficiency by up to 10 percent during peak periods. And when you have a crowd of people in your house during a hot, sweaty summer, that’s going to be some peak periods.
- Search for deals at your local grocery store. Typically right now there should be significant discounts on things like condiments, hot dogs and hamburgers, frozen products and lots of different kinds of in season fruit. Stock up! Even things like fruit can be frozen and used later when your guests arrive.
While Hosting Summer Guests
Precook your meat. When getting ready for a big grill out, consider partially precooking your meat in advance to reduce the time it spends on the grill. This can make the grilling process easier and can save you money on the energy it takes to grill all the meat you can eat. Did you know that a natural gas grill averages .5 therms per hour? A natural gas cooktop averages 2 therms per month! (SCANA Energy can show you how to determine exact energy usage for all your appliances here.)
- Keep it simple. While you might want to go all out every time, it’s best for everyone (and your wallet) to not be too extravagant. Pare down menus. Don’t stress over shared sleeping arrangements. Look for store brand items when you are feeding a crowd. Your guests don’t mind. Promise.
After Hosting Summer Guests
- Don’t be afraid to ask for help when you are hosting summer guests. Sure you don’t want them to do everything but it is totally OK to request assistance. Maybe they can bring a dish to a meal or simply help with clean up after everyone else scampers home. Use them or lose them!
The bottom line is that you don’t need to go overboard when hosting summer guests. Have fun! These are (hopefully) people you like. Don’t spend all your time in the kitchen or chained to the backyard grill. Enjoy the one thing we lose everyday with your guests…time.