Have you turned on your heat yet? The weather has been beautiful the last few days, but at the end of October, we had a couple of really cold days when we woke in the morning to frost on the ground. Did you cave?

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Instead of turning up the heat in my house, we piled on the blankets and put on sweaters in an effort to hold out as long as we can before using up our expensive fuel oil.

If you haven’t turned on your heat yet, you’re not the odd one out. ServiceMaster Restoration by Zaba says one in five New Yokers plan to wait until November 26 before they turn on the heat at home.

I don’t know what you pay for fuel oil, but I just topped off our tank at the cost of $5.79 a gallon, and let me tell you – it hurt. The same gallon of fuel oil that cost under $3.00 this time last year is now almost double that.

And how about energy costs? Electric rates have also spiked as have propane costs. So, no matter how they heat their home, New Yorkers are bracing for a painful paying experience as the average citizen tries to find ways to save money with all of the rising costs.

The US Energy Information Administration estimates that the average American should brace to spend up to 28% more to heat their homes this winter compared to last year.

While it’s completely logical that you might want to hold out turning on your heat for as long as you can, keep in mind that not turning it on can come with some big risks including frozen and burst pipes which can lead to thousands of dollars in clean up and repair.

If you're not sure how you're going to be able to afford to heat your home this winter, New York has some suggestions not only on how to save money, but how to request help if your situation becomes dire.

LOOK: Here are 25 ways you could start saving money today

These money-saving tips—from finding discounts to simple changes to your daily habits—can come in handy whether you have a specific savings goal, want to stash away cash for retirement, or just want to pinch pennies. It’s never too late to be more financially savvy. Read on to learn more about how you can start saving now. [From: 25 ways you could be saving money today]


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