Utility costs keep rising, especially during the colder months when turning up the heat and adding holiday lights to the mix can really cause your electric bill to skyrocket. You can do much more to lower your electricity costs than just remembering to turn off lights and unplug appliances you aren’t using. Below are three simple ways to save money on your electric bill each month.

1. Use Energy-Efficient Light Bulbs

Keeping the lights off isn’t always easy, especially in the fall and winter when it stays dark longer. Rather than fumbling around in the dark, switch out old, energy-guzzling bulbs for new, energy-efficient models. They might cost you a little more at the store, but you’ll end up saving significantly on replacement bulbs because they last much longer, and on your energy bill because they use substantially less energy to produce the same amount of light as your old bulbs.

2. Use Energy-Efficient Appliances

Switching out old appliances is an investment in your home that pays off whether you’re planning on selling or staying put for several years. Energy-efficient appliances not only save you a lot of money each year on your electric bills, they also increase the value of your home. Many manufacturers make energy-efficient appliances, so they’re available in a wide range of prices. Also, many states offer tax breaks or rebates for purchasing energy-efficient appliances.

3. Use Power Strips

Another waste of electricity is from appliances and electronics that aren’t in use but still draw energy. Items such as TVs, computers, coffee makers, DVD players and others continually draw power when they are plugged in. Make it easy to cut back on such wasted energy by plugging these items into power strips that you can simply turn off when you’re finished using the equipment, preventing it from drawing power.

In addition to the above, consider visiting your utility company’s website to see what other rebates and discounts it offers, as well as any additional tips for saving electricity that you might not have thought of.