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6 Products that Pay You Back

family expensesWith a tiny investment, you can reap great savings rewards. Get a hold of the following products, frugally of course, and start saving now.

Netflix or Hulu

For just $8 a month, you can have access to hit television shows, movies, specials, sports, news and more. Compare that to $75-$300 a month for cable. Plus, with streaming, you can get your entertainment anywhere. You may already have everything you need to play streaming videos on your television. The Wii, Playstation 3, Xbox 360 and most Blu-ray players already offer a streaming feature. If you don’t currently own one of those devices, a $60 Roku box will do the trick.

Programmable Thermostat

Why heat or cool your home while you are away? With a programable thermostat, you’ll save money on your energy costs. Plus, you can set it to lower the heat while you are sleeping and then raise it just before you get up for the most convenience and comfort without the extra expense of running the heating all night. The same goes for air conditioning costs.

Faucet Aerator

If you pay for your water, you can save up to $75 per year, just by installing faucet aerators on your most-used faucets. One aerator can save up to 50 gallons of water a year. The devices are cheap (think less than $3), and can be found in any home improvement store. They work by mixing water with air, making it feel like an increase in water pressure while using less.

Crockpot or Slow Cooker

Eating out can be expensive, but it can be tough to cook after a long day. That is why investing in a crockpot or slow cooker can save you money. Throw a few ingredients in the pot in the morning, and have an inexpensive dinner waiting for you in the evening. Crockpots sell for between $15-45, depending on size and features, but you can often pick one up for less than $5 at a thrift store or yard sale.

Power Strip

Did you know that most electronics continue to draw power even when they are turned off? These are called vampire electronics, because they can continue to drain money from you. Chances are if you can turn something on with a remote, or if a device has a clock, a timer, or a display, then it is using energy as long as it is plugged it.

Since unplugging everything in your home isn’t very practical, put your biggest energy-draining electronics on a power strip (think television, DVD or Blu-ray player, cable box). Then when you are done using the devices or before you go to bed, simply flick the switch on the power strip.

Not convinced? Power strips usually have built in surge protectors that will protect your valuable investments from power surges which can fry electronics, saving you on replacement costs.

Battery Charger

How much money do you spend on disposable batteries? The average household might just save close to $400 per year by switching over to rechargeable batteries. The general rule of thumb is that a charger and a set of rechargeable batteries will pay for itself after six uses. Any additional uses will save you money.