It is back to school season once again. Everywhere you look, from stores to TV, you’ll find back to school advertisements geared towards parents and kids preparing for the school year. While many are focused on back-to-school shopping for clothes, supplies and even laptops, here are some other ways to save time and money.

While the kids prepare to go off to college, high school or even grade school, prepare your home for a house with less traffic. These tips will keep more money in your pocket by saving on energy costs.

Kick the thermostat up a few notches

With fewer or no children in the house, you can turn the thermostat up a few degrees. Using a programmable thermostat is the way to go since all you have to do is set it to a slightly warmer temperature when no one is home, then change it to a lower degree a half hour prior to everyone coming home.

Here’s the awesome news! For every degree the temperature increases you will likely save 4-8% on your energy bill.

When temperatures are getting low, start heating your house by switching the process so that it is cooler in the day time and night.

Take advantage of closed curtains and blinds during the day

You can keep the heat from the sun out of your home by simply closing the curtains and blinds.

Be picky about the mini fridge

Mini fridges are rated number one for sucking up energy when it comes to students. By purchasing an Energy Star rated fridge, you will save energy and money. Another thing to avoid are old mini fridges that you can find on craigslist because these will definitely drain your power.

Only Energy Star rated computer hardware

You will save about 65% less energy when you buy Energy Star scanners, printers and computers. When it comes to monitors, expect to save as much as 90% due to how much it costs to turn them down when you are not using it. Let’s say you use your monitor about 8 hours a day for up to 8 months, this is going to save you $15 a year.

Look for the deal

In states that offer consumer electric choice, you may save money changing electric companies. When summer is over, providers will drop their prices, and this could save you almost 10-15% on your bill.

Get rid of your old incandescent light bulbs

When incandescent light bulbs get old, they tend to expel tons of heat. By using Energy Star light bulbs, you save 75% on electricity and last much longer compared to other models. These bulbs function perfectly fine providing plenty of light and less heat. You will save up to $6 per year on electricity.