Best Money Tips: Screw It, I'm Buying an Air Conditioner

By Andrea Karim on 2 August 2009 8 comments
Photo: Raquel1

Welcome to Wise Bread's Best Money Tips roundup! Boy howdy, was this ever a hot, muggy week. I tried to be brave, walking around naked with lots of running fans and buckets of ice, but my coworkers complained too much. Something about seared retinas? Anyway, while I wait patiently for my Hai'er brand air conditioner to arrive from Costco, here are some great personal finance blog posts from around the country, and maybe one from the Great White North.

Squawkfox lists ways to stay cool without air conditioning. Interesting enough, one of them involves mooching off of people who DO have air conditioning. I highly recommend mooching.

Soon, your kids will be going back to school and you won't have to listen to them whine about how you don't have air conditioning. Frugal Dad has back to school shopping tips galore.

20 Something Finance gets all metaphorical with a comparison of personal finance to the Tour de France... or is that a simile? Interestingly, neither the Tour de France or personal finance necessarily involves air conditioning.

Dumb Little Man has tips for not becoming a complete whale while living the life of a cubicle monkey. Also no mention of air conditioning. COINCIDENCE?!?!

Saving Advice asks if crafting is a good way to make money. I don't know, can you knit a functioning air conditioner?

The Wisdom Journal offers some methods for turning your supposed "needs" into mere "wants." Like, I thought I needed a diamond necklace, but it turns out that I was simply delusional from the heat, so I bought an air conditioner, which I actually needed.

The Greenest Dollar teaches you how to quit your job, which we all know you won't do, since that's 8 hours of AC-cooled existence every weekday.

You know how you like to start up the grill with a pile of $20 bills? Me, too. That's the surest way to attract a frugal mate, reports Weakonomics, so get to it if you want to marry Thrifty McSavingspants.

For Canadians traveling to the U.S., you should buy your American dinero before arriving, according to Get Money Energy. However, just as an FYI, we are already all sold out of "les aire condtiounieres", so you might want to try Mexico.

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Guest's picture

I have 3 air conditioners, all fairly young that are going unused because I've opted against their use - and am very glad....

* I save much needed money on the utility bill. I also just adjusted my water heater downward with no negative effects...

* I get the great pleasure of fresh air. This has allowed me to sleep more readily and deeply than I had for years. Crazy dreams...

* My allergies have largely cleared up...

* I'm motivated to get outside (where it is often cooler) and to make use of our pool...

* I'm getting used to the heat...

* I'm being kinder to the environment. If we all did likewise, the impact would be huge.

My family and I lived in the jungle in Costa Rica and then on the beach there. No one used A/C. It takes getting used to for us, but it is in fact more natural, healthful, economical, green and conducive to being in touch with nature.

Guest's picture

I moved to Maryland a long time ago. I was in one of those apartments that was half under ground. The windows were almost even with the ground outside.

After 3 days in sweltering heat, with the windows open (which provided no draft because they were so close to the ground), I gave in, bought myself two window units and basked in the cold air.

Never again will I sit in a sweat box like that! Yeah for AC!

Guest's picture

Thanks for the resources to look into, I suggest trying craigslist for a used AC, or maybe eBay.

Andrea Karim's picture

I actually don't mind the idea of lounging around the house in the sweltering heat, but my partner works from home, and it can be very difficult to run a business involving servers when the indoor temp is 97 degrees. If my home were only a home and not currently a workplace, it might be one thing.

Guest's picture

Once upon a time I used to live in a city overseas where, despite heat and humidity, A/C was very rare, even in the bars and restaurants, largely because of the high cost of electricity. During the day, we would keep cool by sitting in shady spots outdoors, like parks and outdoor cafes, and at night, leave our windows open. No matter what, it wasn't nearly as cool or comfortable as having an A/C unit, but I appreciated that even though we didn't have the same creature comforts I did in the States, life was in some ways more enjoyable, such as being "forced" to spend time with friends outdoors.

Guest's picture

I'm in central California, which has long stretches of 100+ degree weather in the summer, and we lived 12 years here before we installed air conditioning. We get a sea breeze from 60 miles away every evening, so we could mostly manage. Still, the August when I was 8 mos. pregnant with our second child and my husband accused me of lacking "pioneer moxy" was the only real time I seriously considered murder. He's lucky I could only waddle at that point, because if I could've caught him, he'd have been in a world of hurt. . .

Guest's picture

Nah, what you really wanted was some cool air! :)

Guest's picture

ACs are just one of those things you cant go without in this heat! It is an investment for the home but it sure definitely worth it. Here are other investments we can do for the home that will help save in the long run (and make us happier)