That 30-year mortgage seems like it'll be with you forever, doesn't it? Reduce the term to 24 years by making just one extra payment a year. In interest alone, it'll save you a bundle of money: On a $440,000 mortgage at 6 percent, if you make just one extra payment, you'll save $12,000 over the life of the loan. Do it every year, and the savings jumps to $104,000.
To save even more on home-related expenses, raise the deductible on your homeowners insurance, then do an energy audit by finding areas in the home where air is leaking, insulation is not working or windows need caulking.
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