May is halfway over, and June is looming, along with the rising temperatures that go along with summer. If you have had a more difficult year financially, you are probably looking for ways to save money everywhere you turn, especially when it comes to your home. With summer on the horizon, here are some tips to help you save money on air conditioning costs. Whether or not your wallet is feeling tighter, these tips will help make your air conditioner be more efficient in the long run. 1. Use Mother Nature and plant some trees or shrubs. According to the U.S. Department of Energy, if you shade your air conditioning unit, it will work about 10% more efficiently. So go green and stay cool! 2. Curtains can help! It's always said during wintertime that the you lose a lot of heat through your windows. Well, a lot of heat tries to enter through your windows in the summertime. If your windows have curtains, they can help shield the inside of your home from the the sun's rays (and heat).