My friend Dan travels a lot for work. While he has an apartment here in Boston, he usually spends the week hard at work in a different city. When he gets back to Boston, he has just enough time to get settled for the weekend before he jet sets off to another exotic location.
While all of that travel is giving him the opportunity to really see the world, I'm not sure I would like having to be so nomadic. A few weeks ago, I caught up with Dan while he was in town for the weekend and asked him how things were going.
After a long discussion of what he's working on at his job, which I barely understood, I asked him how things were at the studio apartment he rents. He told me that he likes the space, and the price is right for the little amount of time he spends there, but every time he comes home, it seems like there's a pile of bills waiting to greet him.
Particularly, Dan told me that his heating bill is out of control. He doesn't want to turn his heat off, for fear that his pipes will freeze and he will return home every weekend to an arctic apartment, but when he leaves it on, the bill is very high and he can't see the sense in heating an empty place.
I suggested that he turn the thermostat down as low as it can go without being completely off, to keep the apartment at a manageable temperature while he's gone. Then, he could use an electric heater to warm up the small studio while he's home. It would get the space toasty warm in less time, and in the end it would save him money too.
When I saw Dan last weekend, he told me that he took my advice, and his heating bills have been much more reasonable.