(NewsUSA) – You've made the resolution before, and in 2007
you're going to try again. This time you really are going to cut back on expenses and stash away
the money you save for a rainy day. Here are some tips to help you keep that resolution this
* Slash utility bills. Use compact fluorescent light bulbs wherever possible. Turn off
your computer and monitor when you're not using them, and plug DVD players and TVs into a power
strip that can be turned off when not in use. Even on standby, home electronics use several watts
of power. If you are in the market for new appliances, choose energy-efficient ones, such as those
marked with the government's Energy Star label.
* Say no to interest charges. Put the credit cards away and pay cash for most
purchases. Those interest charges add up quickly. If you cannot pay off the amount you owe on your
credit cards in full, consider transferring balances to cards with lower interest rates or
negotiating with your credit card company to lower your rate.
* Dial for dollars. Make your cell phone and long-distance calls during off-peak hours. Or,
switch to an Internet phone service like Vonage, one of the fastest-growing broadband telephone
Vonage offers a variety of low-cost plans, including unlimited calling in the United
States, Canada, Puerto Rico, France, Ireland, Italy, Spain and the U.K. for $24.99 a month.
All you need is a broadband Internet connection and a Vonage adapter. Just plug your existing
phone into the adapter, then plug the adapter into your Internet connection. The adapter is
portable so your number travels with you.
For an additional $4.99 a month, Vonage lets you set up a "Virtual Phone Number," a
secondary number tied to your main Vonage line, which can have any available area code. This means
that you can select a friend's area code, even if the person is across the country, and your friend
can call you locally. To learn more, visit www.vonage.com.
* Bundle your insurance. Many insurance
companies offer a significant discount if you have all of your automobile and homeowner's policies
* Consolidate trips. Save time and gasoline by doing all of your errands in one trip.
And plan the route in advance so you can travel the shortest distance from place to place without
having to backtrack and crisscross around town.