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5 Money-Saving IKEA Essentials That You Shouldn’t Miss

5 Money-Saving IKEA Essentials That You Shouldn’t Miss

IKEA is everyone’s go-to for great home essentials. We love the clean lines and simplicity, and easy-to-build pieces. But we shouldn’t be buying less expensive items and then be paying an arm and a leg on utility bills. These five product types available at IKEA are not just essentials, they’re also cheaper than alternatives on the market. This means you won’t have to dish out your kids’ college savings just to afford them or put aside that money you were saving to redesign your home. PLUS, they will save you a lot more in years to come. Don’t miss out on these great items.

1. Rugs and Curtains

Living room

    A lot of homes lose heat through the floor. Because of this, investing in area rugs is an easy, low-cost way to save on those heating bills. Putting up curtains on windows and glass doors can also save you on heating and cooling. Curtains can block the heat from the sun during hot summer months and they can also keep the heat inside during the wintry months. Both rugs and curtains come in so many colorful options at IKEA, so they’re not just energy efficient, they can also give your home a bit of a facelift too. Choose from some stunning designs to pair with your sliding barndoor hardware and you won’t have to sacrifice your design personality.

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    2. Refrigerators

    Refrigerator

      Refrigerators are one of those appliances we have to keep running all day, all night, always. But they sometimes sap more energy than necessary. Most new refrigerators or freezer models are being made more energy efficient than older models. Replacing an old one can save you a little extra money, plus it uses up to 40% less energy than older, outdated models. The newest IKEA refrigerators have been rated A+ or A++, compared to the B- or A- ratings of older appliances.

      3. LED Lights

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      LED lights

        About a quarter of energy consumption is through lighting, but IKEA’s LED lights use about 85% less energy than older bulbs. IKEA has switched all their lighting options completely over to LED. But with their new designs, lighting can also become more fun and beautiful. Not only that, but LED lights come in a wide range of sizes and work with all fittings, so you don’t need to replace your favorite lamp or fixture.

        4. Faucets

        Sink

          With larger families, or even just forgetful family members, saving water can seem like a big ordeal. But IKEA has bathroom faucets that save up to 50% of water and kitchen faucets that will save up to 30% of water use. You can begin to save money on water utility bills by focusing your water-saving efforts at the source. With these new IKEA faucets that come in a great variety of wonderful styles to fit you home’s design theme, you can save without having to change your family’s habits.

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          IKEA also has some great new designs for washing machines and dishwashers that also focus on water efficiency. With these great appliances you won’t feel like you need to start hand washing all your dishes just to save a little cash. You can rest easy knowing that the machine is doing all the hard work for you.

          5. Stovetops

          Stove

            IKEA has some great options for stovetops with new induction technology. Don’t sacrifice your good cooking to save, rather, invest in a new cooktop that heats up the pan (not everything around it, which can result in greater heat loss). Not only do these stovetops save energy, they also work better than older glass-ceramic appliances. IKEA also has great pots and pans to compliment their energy-efficient stovetops.

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            These IKEA essentials are not only energy-efficient, helping to preserve some of the most precious resources the earth has to offer us, but they also save you and your family money. Investing in some of these items will help your family become more eco-friendly and your utility bills will be a little more forgiving.

            Featured photo credit: IKEA/ Gerard Stolk via flic.kr

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            Paisley Hansen

            Freelance Writer

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            Last Updated on September 18, 2020

            7 Simple Rules to Live by to Get in Shape in Two Weeks

            7 Simple Rules to Live by to Get in Shape in Two Weeks

            Learning how to get in shape and set goals is important if you’re looking to live a healthier lifestyle and get closer to your goal weight. While this does require changes to your daily routine, you’ll find that you are able to look and feel better in only two weeks.

            Over the years, I’ve learned a lot about what it takes to get in shape. Although anyone can cover the basics (eat right and exercise), there are some things that I could only learn through trial and error. Let’s cover some of the most important points for how to get in shape in two weeks.

            1. Exercise Daily

            It is far easier to make exercise a habit if it is a daily one. If you aren’t exercising at all, I recommend starting by exercising a half hour every day. When you only exercise a couple times per week, it is much easier to turn one day off into three days off, a week off, or a month off.

            If you are already used to exercising, switching to three or four times a week to fit your schedule may be preferable, but it is a lot harder to maintain a workout program you don’t do every day.

            Be careful to not repeat the same exercise routine each day. If you do an intense ab workout one day, try switching it up to general cardio the next. You can also squeeze in a day of light walking to break up the intensity.

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            If you’re a morning person, check out these morning exercises that will start your day off right.

            2. Duration Doesn’t Substitute for Intensity

            Once you get into the habit of regular exercise, where do you go if you still aren’t reaching your goals? Most people will solve the problem by exercising for longer periods of time, turning forty-minute workouts into two hour stretches. Not only does this drain your time, but it doesn’t work particularly well.

            One study shows that “exercising for a whole hour instead of a half does not provide any additional loss in either body weight or fat”[1].

            This is great news for both your schedule and your levels of motivation. You’ll likely find it much easier to exercise for 30 minutes a day instead of an hour. In those 30 minutes, do your best to up the intensity to your appropriate edge to get the most out of the time.

            3. Acknowledge Your Limits

            Many people get frustrated when they plateau in their weight loss or muscle gaining goals as they’re learning how to get in shape. Everyone has an equilibrium and genetic set point where their body wants to remain. This doesn’t mean that you can’t achieve your fitness goals, but don’t be too hard on yourself if you are struggling to lose weight or put on muscle.

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            Acknowledging a set point doesn’t mean giving up, but it does mean realizing the obstacles you face.

            Expect to hit a plateau in your own fitness results[2]. When you expect a plateau, you can manage around it so you can continue your progress at a more realistic rate. When expectations meet reality, you can avoid dietary crashes.

            4. Eat Healthy, Not Just Food That Looks Healthy

            Know what you eat. Don’t fuss over minutia like whether you’re getting enough Omega 3’s or tryptophan, but be aware of the big things. Look at the foods you eat regularly and figure out whether they are healthy or not. Don’t get fooled by the deceptively healthy snacks just pretending to be good for you.

            The basic nutritional advice includes:

            • Eat unprocessed foods
            • Eat more veggies
            • Use meat as a side dish, not a main course
            • Eat whole grains, not refined grains[3]

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            Eat whole grains when you want to learn how to get in shape.

              5. Watch Out for Travel

              Don’t let a four-day holiday interfere with your attempts when you’re learning how to get in shape. I don’t mean that you need to follow your diet and exercise plan without any excursion, but when you are in the first few weeks, still forming habits, be careful that a week long break doesn’t terminate your progress.

              This is also true of schedule changes that leave you suddenly busy or make it difficult to exercise. Have a backup plan so you can be consistent, at least for the first month when you are forming habits.

              If travel is on your schedule and can’t be avoided, make an exercise plan before you go[4], and make sure to pack exercise clothes and an exercise mat as motivation to keep you on track.

              6. Start Slow

              Ever start an exercise plan by running ten miles and then puking your guts out? Maybe you aren’t that extreme, but burnout is common early on when learning how to get in shape. You have a lifetime to be healthy, so don’t try to go from couch potato to athletic superstar in a week.

              If you are starting a running regime, for example, run less than you can to start. Starting strength training? Work with less weight than you could theoretically lift. Increasing intensity and pushing yourself can come later when your body becomes comfortable with regular exercise.

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              7. Be Careful When Choosing a Workout Partner

              Should you have a workout partner? That depends. Workout partners can help you stay motivated and make exercising more fun. But they can also stop you from reaching your goals.

              My suggestion would be to have a workout partner, but when you start to plateau (either in physical ability, weight loss/gain, or overall health) and you haven’t reached your goals, consider mixing things up a bit.

              If you plateau, you may need to make changes to continue improving. In this case it’s important to talk to your workout partner about the changes you want to make, and if they don’t seem motivated to continue, offer a thirty day break where you both try different activities.

              I notice that guys working out together tend to match strength after a brief adjustment phase. Even if both are trying to improve, something seems to stall improvement once they reach a certain point. I found that I was able to lift as much as 30-50% more after taking a short break from my regular workout partner.

              Final Thoughts

              Learning how to get in shape in as little as two weeks sounds daunting, but if you’re motivated and have the time and energy to devote to it, it’s certainly possible.

              Find an exercise routine that works for you, eat healthy, drink lots of water, and watch as the transformation begins.

              More Tips on Getting in Shape

              Featured photo credit: Alexander Redl via unsplash.com

              Reference

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