If you run a small business, then you already know how important it is to keep costs down.

Fortunately, from supplies to energy costs, there are a number of ways you can save money around the office and maintain a healthy budget.

With cost-effective small business operations in mind, here are just a few ways you can reduce office expenses:

Power Down at the End of the Day

One of the biggest expenditures with any small business is the cost of utilities.

This is especially the case when it comes to office hardware such as desktop computers, laptops, printers, and other tech equipment. If your office uses these energy-eating culprits, then remember to power down your office equipment at the end of each day.

Sure, it takes a few extra minutes to turn off your equipment and to power it back up the next morning, but it could save your office 15% to 20% in energy costs each month. Most office equipment has an energy-saver mode that automatically powers down the device at scheduled times, so use this feature to make the power down process easier.

If your equipment doesn’t have an energy-saver mode, send a friendly reminder to your employees at the end of each workday to power down.

Regulate the Temperature

Alongside office equipment, your office’s air conditioning system can really make your energy costs skyrocket. To avoid this, regulate the temperature of your AC and make sure it coincides with the seasons.

For example, running the cool setting of your AC between 74 and 78 degrees during the summer and running the heat setting between 66 and 70 degrees during the winter will ensure your system doesn’t have to work overtime.

In the article “Throw Your Energy Bills in the Trash with Gary Wollenhaupt of Proud Green Home“, Wollenhaupt mentions the importance of low-maintenance energy saving features. If your office doesn’t have one already, installing a programmable thermostat for example is a maintenance-free way to regulate temperatures in the office.

Go Paperless

Paper isn’t cheap – add to it the cost of printing supplies and your small business is spending a small fortune every month. There is however one easy solution to the costly paper issue: go paperless.

That’s right; you can send files and documents via email instead of printing them in paper form.

Likewise, you can also request paperless documents and statements from service providers and banks, which will help reduce paper and printing costs on your end as well.

Install CFLs and Motion Sensing Lights

Whether your small business consists of a few offices, a storefront, or an entire floor of an office building, lighting your workspace can be expensive.

With that said, you can drastically reduce those lighting costs by using compact fluorescent light bulbs where possible. Compact fluorescents use 70% to 90% less energy than traditional incandescent and full-size fluorescent light bulbs.

To take the savings a step further, consider installing motion sensor lights in the stock room, breakroom, and hallways where lighting isn’t necessary around the clock.

When you’re ready to cut costs at your small business, consider some of the cost saving and energy saving tips mentioned above.

About the Author: Adam Groff is a freelance writer and creator of content. He writes on a variety of topics including small business and energy conservation