After you finally get everything done and you are settled into the new apartment, you will get a short time where you can simply enjoy learning about your new surroundings. Going out, seeing the local sights, and learning your bearing is a good way to immerse yourself in the Japan experience. Eventually, you will receive the slips in the mail that detail out your monthly charges for all of your utilities. If you aren’t careful with your consumption it could end up with you having shockingly high bills. There a few very simple ways that everyone can keep the bills from going out of control.
Turn it Off
The simplest solution that everyone knows is to simply turn off everything that isn’t currently being used. This goes for everything that isn’t the refrigerator. It is easy to forget that some things are running as they don’t make much noise. Keep in mind every day before you leave the apartment and before you go to be. Little things will build up quickly when they are all running at the same time. The best thing to do is make a list for how many things are on while you are home so you can check them off before heading out. It would also be a good idea to put as many things as you can on a timer. You never have to worry when it all goes off on its own. Water can also be a secret expense that can come back to haunt you. A leaky faucet or not completely turning off the water can lead to not only a big bill, but a letter from the landlord. It is the same if you have guests over frequently and they end up running up the bill. Keep an eye on how often you use it and it should stay as one of the lowest bills. If you use a gas stove you should keep in mind how long you use it when you cook. Sometimes quick meals are the best way to combat large amounts of gas usage.
Check the Appliances
Whether you had your apartment furnished or you bought your own machines, it’s best to see what kind of wattage they will use during normal usage. It can really make a difference when trying to pinch as many pennies when watching consumption. There are options available at all department stores that can keep you on the low end when trying to sort out your bills. Generally speaking, as long as you are using the appliances in a normal manner, and not more than was intended, you should be fine.
Bear With the Elements
As you may know, housing in Japan is built with the idea to allow air to flow through it. So it becomes a very troublesome, and if not watched closely, costly ordeal. You have a few easy ways to deal with it, but it doesn’t mean that you will be comfortable while doing it. When it comes to the summertime, you should buy a floor fan if you want some extra wind flowing through the apartment. The AC unit will drain more energy than expected, especially during peak heat times. If you can’t go without it then make sure to set the temperature around 20 or higher. Once you go under that the machine will have to work harder to keep the temperature down in your room. Even though some showers come with a drying function, it is best to reserve it only for rainy days. Too much use will show up big time on the monthly bill. If air-drying your clothes is too much trouble, you can search for a nearby coin laundromat. In the winter, it’s best to layer on some clothes when at home. There is a large line of house clothes that you can buy at all the major outlets and even convenience stores. Heat tech clothing is a good way to beat the cold, and they have recently been coming in new designs for people who are tired of white or black versions. Kerosene heaters use up less electricity but have their own costs with gas, and the problem with fumes when used for too long inside. Space heaters can be deceptive energy gobblers, and they struggle to heat large areas. You shouldn’t leave any of the heating devices on while you sleep to reduce energy use and to save you from any accidents that may occur.
Get out of the House
Another very simple way to reduce the overall expenditure is to simply go out. I don’t have to always be for shopping or other money-spending tasks, but it can be for a nice walk. Simply taking a long stroll, riding a bike, going to the park, or enjoying your area can help you not use any energy at all. Plus there are usually a large number of things to do around your town, most of which will be for free. It never hurts to get more involved in your local community either, so try and find some local groups you can join. Getting a bicycle or having some small hobbies that be taken somewhere else. If you make some local friends you can ask them to teach about some free events.
All of the utilities that you have to pay for can be used in a way that leaves you with some extra money in your pocket. In all truth, you will most likely be working most of the day, and won’t be there long enough to use much. Try your best to keep all of your usages down, not just for your wallet, but for the rest of the country. There has been a push to be more energy conscious and people try their best, for the most part, to use as little as possible. Hopefully, you can enjoy everything Japan has to offer, and not kill your bank account in the process.