One of the first things I have done after we moved in to our new house in 2003 was to replace all light bulbs with Compact Fluorescent Lamps (CFL). I would call this "money savings for lazy" since there is so little effort required -- just buy the lamps and screw them in place of your regular light bulbs.
The initial cost is slightly higher (a 4-pack currently goes for $11.92 at Amazon) but the savings on energy over life time of the bulb will repay it and then more.
According to this cool looking CFL Savings Calculator from General Electric I am currently saving $190 every year and will save over $1000 by the time all my lamps need replacement.
The life goes on however and it sounds like 5-10 years from now (when all my CFL's burn out ;-) ) I will have to upgrade again, this time to Light-Emitting Diodes (LED). They have a few advantages over CFL's. Two most important ones are probably reduced size and absence of power-on delay so irritating with CFL's.
In fact you already can see prices dropping on LED's as new technological advancements promise better energy efficiency and lower manufacturing costs. Below are two LED bargains that caught my eye lately. They look more like cool toys however and for my day-to-day needs I will stick to the "boring CFL's". ;-)
|Super-bright 16-LED floodlight
rechargeable with hand-crank
Buy from Sharper Image for $19.95
|Compact waterproof 9-LED flashlight
operates 40 hrs on 3 AAA batteries
Buy from LED Shoppe for $3.00