6 ways to get better at budgeting at home by fully utilising smart tech

Smart tech is here to help us. Understand how with these 6 simple ways you can start saving money at home.

Woman on sofa using smartphone
(Image credit: Getty Images)

We’re living in a time where new technology is being developed every day to help us live smarter, easier, and more comfortably. Gone are the days where we had to write down every purchase and every paycheck to keep track of our finances. Now, there’s an app to do all of that for us.

Budgeting is one way smart tech helps us save money, but there are plenty more steps we can take to save money around the house. You may not know this, but even your light bulbs and thermostats could be changed to make things more efficient and energy-conscious at home. 

From tracking decoration projects to making your home more secure, let’s dive into six easy ways you can save money at home. It doesn’t take much effort to be more money-savvy these days. In fact, it takes less, as we let the tech do the work for us. 

1. Track your money

To really be able to manage your household finances, you’ll need an accurate picture of your spending. This involves tracking everything, which, of course, many of us do anyway, but even those with the keenest eyes for their incomings and outgoings won’t be able to paint as clear a picture as a money planning website. That is, unless you’re willing to dedicate hours every week to doing it manually.

The smartest money planning sites can even bring your various bank accounts together, tracking your spending across essentials like bills, rent and memberships, to more recreational spends like how often you eat out or buy a new toy for the cat. These apps can help us see where exactly we can save and allow us to set budgets to make it happen.

2. Switch to smart bulbs

Smart bulbs can save us money in so many ways. The LED bulbs use less energy when they’re on and in standby, and with energy bills continuing to soar, this can massively reduce our costs down the line. They also last longer, as LED bulbs can last anywhere from 15 to 25 years, while your typical incandescent bulb might only last about 1 year.

Another saviour is their ability to automatically turn off when no one’s home. You can also set schedules, to make sure that nobody’s leaving the lights on when the rooms aren’t being used.

They’re intuitively easy to use as they can connect to smart home devices like Google Home, and if you’re using an EE Smart Hub Plus, you won’t have to worry about having too many devices using up the bandwidth. 

Many of them come with spectrums of colours to choose from, too, so you can change the lighting in each room depending on mood, time of day, or decor. You can even bare them in mind when designing a new room - knowing you can easily light the room in any colour.

3. Save on energy

Smart meters track our energy usage every second of the day, informing us of how much our devices and appliances are using up. This can illuminate some obvious ways to save money in the home, like noticing whether your laptop has been left charging for 2 days or if your kids forgot to turn the games console off.

As smart meters send this information directly to your energy supplier, it’ll also avoid you overpaying - as any future bills will be perfectly accurate.

4. Secure your home

Investing in home security tech might not seem like the biggest money saver, but down the line it can certainly keep a tighter lid on your finances.

The obvious advantage here is that your home and belongings will be better protected, and you’ll lower the likelihood of any theft or damage. And what’s more is that insurance companies recognise that homes with security systems are much less likely to be broken into, and this will save you huge amounts on home insurance over the years. 

Home security smart lock

(Image credit: Tom Watkins)

Installing one of the best video doorbells will give you around-the-clock remote access to your front door, and you can use one to communicate with delivery drivers, avoiding the time and money spent having to pick up deliveries from the depot.

Pair this with a set of indoor and outdoor cams, like the EE Smart Home Security packages powered by Verisure, and you’ll have a close eye on your home at all times, saving yourself money in the process.

5. Get a smart thermostat

Smart thermostats can automatically adjust your heating and cooling settings depending on the temperature of your home. Installing one involves connecting it to your home’s boiler and/or HVAC systems, so that the smart thermostat can adjust the settings in the background.

Some smart thermostats even have geofencing, and can alter the temperatures of different rooms depending on where people are and how often the rooms are used. As smart thermostats connect up to your home’s wifi, you can use your smartphone to set schedules to avoid your heating/AC turning on when it isn’t needed, saving energy and money over time. 

Person using a smart thermostat app on smart phone

(Image credit: Getty Images)

6. Streamline decorating & renovations

Many people don’t realise that there are apps to help plan, map out and track any home renovations or decorating projects. Particularly when it comes to renovating, there are dedicated apps to help balance renovation budgets, see where savings can be made and readjust to prioritise certain tasks.

You can also save on hiring renovators, contractors and consultants by seeing for yourself exactly what the plans would look like. Apps can now create visualisations of whatever plans you input, and you can see whether it’s what you want without having to send designs back and forth from an expert. 

And if you’re brave enough to tackle it yourself, you can even get the most out of these apps by seeing exactly what tasks need to be done to complete the project.

To discover more ways EE can help your home run smarter, visit EE.co.uk/home. 

Dan Fauzi
Home Tech Editor

Dan is the Home Tech Editor for Homes & Gardens, covering all things cleaning, smart home, sound and automation across the Solved section. Having worked for Future PLC since July 2023, Dan was previously the Features Editor for Top Ten Reviews and looked after the wide variety of home and outdoor content across the site, but their writing about homes, gardens, tech and products started back in 2021 on brands like BBC Science Focus, YourHomeStyle, Homes & Antiques and Gardens Illustrated.

Dan is based in Bristol, UK with a BA in Philosophy and an MA in Magazine Journalism. Outside of work, you'll find them at gigs and art galleries, cycling somewhere scenic, or cooking up something good in the kitchen.