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Ask the Entrepreneurs: 9 Ways to Keep Bills Down in the Summer Months

Ask the Entrepreneurs: 9 Ways to Keep Bills Down in the Summer Months

Ask The Entrepreneurs is a regular series where members of the Young Entrepreneur Council are asked a single question that aims to help Lifehack readers level up their own lives, whether in a area of management, communication, business or life in general.

Here’s the question posed in this edition of Ask The Entrepreneurs:

How do you keep office bills down in the summer months?

1. Keep the Temperature Comfortable

Maren Hogan

    We have the benefit of having a small space to heat and cool, but those bills still come, and it’s always nice if that number is small. But at the end of the day, employees are more productive when they aren’t bundled up or sweating through their shirts. In the summer, we keep it cool and keep working. We all know how frustrating it is to be uncomfortable. It’s a perfectly avoidable situation.

    Maren Hogan, Red Branch Media

    2. Wear T-Shirts and Shorts

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    Matt ehrlichman

      The biggest expense next to rent is HVAC. Porch gives our employees flexibility to dress for their comfort, which generally means no one is boiling in button-up shirts and wool slacks. To enforce it, when I don’t have external meetings, I lead by example and wear my favorite pair of shorts!

      Matt Ehrlichman, Porch

      3. Rotate Fans Clockwise

      Andrew Schrage

        During the summer, fans should rotate clockwise. Also, offering more telecommuting opportunities for your staff during the summer helps, as fewer staff members at the office means reduced energy bills. Requesting an energy audit from your provider can also help you find other ways to reduce energy costs.

        Andrew Schrage, Money Crashers Personal Finance

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        4. Provide in-Office Beer

        Robert J. Moore

          We keep a dual-tap kegerator in our company kitchen that is always stocked with high-quality beer. This means that most company “outings” take place in the office, which allows team bonding to happen more often while keeping bar tabs low.

          Robert J. Moore, RJMetrics

          5. Have Summer Fridays

          Brittany Hodak

            Celebrating “Summer Fridays” — letting your employees work half-day Fridays between Memorial Day and Labor Day — is a great way to boost morale and job satisfaction while trimming your summertime office cooling hours by 10 percent! Motivated employees will work harder on Friday mornings to ensure they’re ready to go home by lunch, and you’ll save cooling costs without sacrificing workplace productivity.

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            Brittany Hodak, ‘ZinePak

            6. Run a Virtual Company Year-Round

            Chuck Cohn

              If you run a virtual company year-round, you never have to worry about office bills. Save the money that you might spend on office space, and pass along the savings to your customers. If you can provide the best product and the lowest price, your company will do well.

              Chuck Cohn, Varsity Tutors

              7. Designate a Day to Work From Home

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              Andrew Saladino

                To save on operational costs, we select a few days each month in the summer that we all work from home. It gives employees the chance to run errands and get personal things done, and we save money on utility bills and other costs since the office is closed.

                Andrew Saladino, Just Bath Vanities

                8. Have a Three-Day Office Week

                Allow employees to work from home on Mondays and Fridays. It greatly reduces our overall electricity bills during the hot summer months.

                Jeff Wright, Phusion Projects LLC

                9. Quote the Oracle

                Sam Saxton

                  Whenever I read about some company undertaking a cost-cutting program, I know it’s not a company that really knows what costs are about. The really good manager does not wake up in the morning and say “I’m going to cut costs today” any more than he wakes up and decides to start breathing.

                  Sam Saxton, Salter Spiral Stair and Mylen Stairs

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                  Published on July 4, 2018

                  Top 10 Recommendations on Money Management Apps

                  Top 10 Recommendations on Money Management Apps

                  Don’t want to overspend your budget, swipe your credit card too many times, and feel like a financial mess? Instead of beating yourself up for the bad financial decisions you’ve ever made, create a new plan!

                  The solution is simple, save more and spend less. But, we all know it’s easier said than done.

                  One problem is finding quality apps that save you time and money, and aren’t just hype.

                  Luckily, there’re many great money management apps available at your fingertips. Here are 10 reliable money management apps that can help you save money, and crush debt.

                  1. Personal Capital

                    When was the last time you’ve tracked your net worth? Probably months ago or maybe never. Personal Capital allows you to easily track your net worth and plan for retirement.

                    Here are some of its main features:

                    • Sync many investment accounts, and expenses (mortgage, credit cards, etc.) in one place
                    • Discover hidden fees and how much they’re affecting your retirement plan
                    • Wealth management for investors requiring a long-term strategy

                    With Personal you’re free to track your expenses and net worth.

                    Available for: iOS and Android

                    2. Mint

                      If your smartphone could only install a few apps, Mint would be one of them. Why? Because Mint tracks all your balances and bills in one place.

                      Here are some of its main features:

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                      • Effortlessly track all your bills and balances in one dashboard
                      • Categorized expenses to understand where you spend your money
                      • Uncover hidden fees, and determine your investment style with sophisticated retirement tools.

                      Feel at ease with managing your money by a reputable company that isn’t going anywhere.

                      Available for: iOS and Android

                      3. YNAB

                        Everyone needs a budget, there’s no way around it. YNAB (You Need A Budget) is an easy to use app that will change the way you think about money. Their motto is to “give every dollar a job”, and you’ll quickly discover why.

                        Here are some of its main features:

                        • Easily sync all bank accounts in one place
                        • Visually see your debt paying progress with eye-catching charts and notifications
                        • Customized categories setting saving goals

                        The best part about YNAB is the community that comes along with it. You can hop on the YNAB forum to receive support, listen to the YNAB Podcast or stay tuned for their weekly videos.

                        Available for: iOS and Android

                        4. Wealthfront

                          Albert Einstein once said “compound interest is the eight wonder in the world”, and for a very good reason. The problem is, most people are scared or unwilling to learn the basics of investing. This is why Wealthfront is the perfect solution for the hands-off investors.

                          Here are some of its main features:

                          • Variety of investment account options including IRA, Roth IRA, and more
                          • Your portfolio composed of 7 different asset classes
                          • Automatically rebalanced portfolio
                          • Daily tax loss harvesting

                          Wealthfront is perfect for people requiring investment guidance, or prefer a hands-off solution.

                          Available for: iOS and Android

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                          5. Clarity Money

                            If you’re staying on top of your budget but want to take your finances to the next level, Clarity Money can help you. Clarity Money helps you stay under budget and build a personalized savings plan.

                            Here are some of its main features:

                            • Easily cancel subscriptions with one click
                            • Synchronize bank accounts fast
                            • Transfer money effortlessly between different accounts

                            Clarity Money isn’t an app that does it all. But, it does make transferring money and canceling subscriptions fast and efficient.

                            Available for: iOS and Android

                            6. Acorns

                              What if there was a way to quickly gain confidence in investing your money, without too much risk? There is, and Acorns is your solution. With Acorns’s technology, you’re able to make investments as small as $5.

                              Here are some of its main features:

                              • Automatic contribution option
                              • Customized portfolio tailored to your needs
                              • Low management fees ranging from $1-$2 per month

                              Stop wasting dollars on expensive coffee. Instead, invest them towards a brighter financial future.

                              Available for: iOS and Android

                              7. Albert

                                Do you budget by only subtracting your expenses from your income? If so, how would you discover any overpayments or extra money you could save? This is where Albert shines, and it does it all free.

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                                Here are some of its main features:

                                • Receive notifications for overpayments, hidden fees, and low balances
                                • An Automatic budget that’s built around your spending and income
                                • Easily track debt and set new financial goals

                                While Albert does offer a paid option, most of its core features are FREE. So, what better option to save?

                                Available for: iOS

                                8. Prism

                                  Have you recently forgot to pay a bill because life got in the way? Prism automatically tracks your bills and syncs your bank accounts in one place.

                                  Here are some of its main features:

                                  • View all your account balances in one glance
                                  • Bill due dates are automatically pulled and tracked
                                  • Receive early reminders for upcoming bills

                                  If your budget is on “fleek” but can’t seem to stay on top of your bills, Prism is your go-to app.

                                  Available for: iOS, Android, Windows, Amazon

                                  9. Mvelopes

                                    Remember hearing about people using envelopes to budget their money? Well, Mvelopes is the new envelope system for this generation. Easily create monthly budgets and track your saving goals.

                                    Here are some of its main features:

                                    • Connect unlimited bank accounts
                                    • Real-time budgeting with auto transaction syncing
                                    • Low monthly $4 fee or $40 annual

                                    Mvelopes can help you crush debt, save more, and help you stop overspending. With its low monthly fee, it’s worth a try.

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                                    Available for: iOS and Android

                                    10. Wallaby

                                      Most people don’t have time to track their credit card’s changing rewards and interest rates. Because of this, you need help reaping the most of your credit card’s rewards. Wallaby is the app that will help you do just that.

                                      Here are some of its main features:

                                      • Automatic recommendations for the best credit card to use for each transaction
                                      • A friendly user interface, displaying credit cards with their corresponding images
                                      • Free to use

                                      If you’re using the same credit card to make your purchases, you may be leaving money on the table. Give Wallaby a try if you’re ready to maximize your credit card’s rewards.

                                      Available for: iOS and Android

                                      Take control of your finances and experience financial freedom

                                      Picture yourself staying on budget and saving more money than you’d ever imagined.

                                      It took hard work and dedication but you’d finally learned how to manage your money. You have to start taking control of your spending and saving habits.

                                      You now have a list of reliable apps that can help you build better money habits, what are you waiting for?

                                      Featured photo credit: Pexels via pexels.com

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