50 Great Ways To Save Money
1. Avoid going out to eat. Okay let’s admit it, this might be hard to avoid altogether, but it’s been proven time and time again that cooking at home saves you significant money in the long run.
2. Start a piggy bank. Emptying your pockets into a piggy bank every day is a great habit to get into to to save money. Sure it may seem like this was something we did when we were just a child, but storing your change away can really add up.
3. Get savvy with coupons. Coupons are a great way to save money on grocery and everyday items. Start clipping them from the insert in your Sunday paper or go to a website like http://www.Coupons.com and print them out.
4. Carpool to work with a friend. Carpooling saves tons of money in gas, and it’s also good for the environment.
5. Eat a few vegetarian meals every week. Chicken and ground beef are expensive to buy. Try cooking spaghetti without meat, or make a vegetarian lasagna, and save a few bucks along the way.
6. Turn off your lights. We as a society have become much better at conserving energy, but it’s always helpful to have a reminder to turn off the kitchen lights when you’re in your bedroom and vice versa.
7. Dye your hair back to your natural color. If you spend a considerable amount of money dyeing your hair or getting highlights every few weeks, try going back to your natural color to save significant bucks or if you need to dye your hair because you’ve gone gray then think about learning how to do it at home.
8. Order water at a restaurant. Some restaurants charge exorbitant amounts for cokes, let alone mixed drinks. By just ordering tap water and making it a habit, you can save a lot of money throughout the year.
9. Learn how to sew curtains. If you learn how to sew curtains, you can save hundreds of dollars furnishing your home.
10. Buy in bulk. Buying your canned goods in bulk is a great way to save money over the long term. Also when it comes to grains, this is a great way to go.
11. Consume all of your milk. There’s nothing worse than wasting food, especially milk. Make sure to only buy a half-gallon if you don’t use it frequently or use a lot of recipes that require it that week.
12. Use generic prescriptions. So many prescriptions come in generic form now. You can save a bundle by using them—just check with your doctor first.
13. Try e-books. You don’t have to have an e-reader to benefit from e-books; you can download the programs onto your computer for free and read them right there. They are significantly cheaper than paper books if you are buying, and you can still get them for free from the library at most locations.
14. Repair versus buying new. Sometimes it’s less expensive to replace a part on an item instead of buying a new one. For example, buying a new watch battery is much cheaper than buying a new watch.
15. Get the flu shot. Getting the flu shot is very inexpensive, and preventing the illness can save you from taking too many days off work.
16. Buy quality not quantity. A nice, quality pair of shoes can last you 10 years whereas a cheap pair will break easily and cost you more in the long run
17. Avoid credit cards. Do not rely on a credit card for emergencies. If you view debt as an option, you’ll always be in debt (learn how to get out of debt).
18. Cut cable. I always thought I couldn’t live without DVR, let alone without fancy cable. But after getting rid of both, I figured out that you adapt to your environment quickly, without noticing the difference really. I saved a lot of money this way and there were certain things that I still paid for that helped me adjust to the loss such as Amazon Prime.
19. Use better light bulbs. Use energy efficient light bulbs in your house or office (compact fluorescent lightbulbs). CFLs cost a little bit more, but they last longer and will reduce your electric bill.
20. Grow your own vegetables. Gardening can turn into a hobby that actually reduces your grocery bill and is fun.
21. Wait 30 days before buying something. If you want something, giving yourself 30 days to think about it will make sure you don’t impulse buy (and you may find you don’t even want it anymore)
22. Rent or borrow books. With the internet and libraries, there are lots of options out there.
23. Shop for things when they’re out of season. Buy coats in the summer, for example.
24. Make homemade gifts. Track what you spend on gifts and reduce the amount by making creative, thoughtful gifts instead (Pinterest is a great resource).
25. Do fun activities that are free. Create a list of inexpensive or free activities that you can do with your friends or family, instead of going out to eat or shopping (examples: hiking, fishing, and game night).
26. Pack your lunch for work. Buying lunch every day adds up fast! This is another supportive daily habit that is easy to make a part of your routine.
27. Get wealthy friends. This one I’m not kidding about! One of the best life hacks out there is that you are the average of the five people with whom you spend the most time. If you want to save more money, start hanging around people who are good at saving money. You’ll be amazed at what happens: you’ll be saving more money than you ever have.
28. Commit to lowering your grocery bill by $25-$50/month. Do this by cutting down on the drinks and meat you buy.
29. Don’t spend when you’re emotional. Sometimes, a shopping spree really makes you feel better. But that doesn’t mean it’s good for your financial life! Instead of splurging if you’re upset, notice the temptation and emotion and opt for exercise instead.
30. Shop at thrift stores. Thrift stores are great places to purchase clothing, luggage, and even furniture for less. You’d be surprised at the high quality of items that people donate.
31. Learn how to refinish furniture. If you learn how to refinish furniture, then you’ll be able to give all of your pieces a fresh, new look without spending a fortune decorating.
32. Get a roommate. It doesn’t matter how old you are, getting a roommate is a great way to save significant money on your expenses. If you’re worried about sharing your space, be sure to rent to someone who is mature and will respect your belongings.
33. Brew your own coffee: The latte factor is real. I used my Upgrade and Save Strategy and got a Nespresso machine. It’s pricey, the pods are pricey, but it’s still half as cheap as buying coffee at Starbucks.
34. Skip the after work beer: After a day of work, it’s easy to turn to a friend and see if they want to snag a beer at happy hour. Find a different way to unwind that doesn’t involve imbibing and your body will thank you.
35. Hit up the happy hour: If you want to go to the bar, at least go during happy hour. It’s probably going to be sometime between 3-7pm and you’ll get a buck or two off beers, food, and maybe something else – just check the bar’s website and go when the deals are flowing.
36. Don’t speed: Driving the speed limit is important for three reasons. The most important has to do with safety – the speed limit is what the road has been rated for. Second, you won’t get a speeding ticket ever if you drive the speed limit. Lastly, driving too quickly increases air drag and lowers fuel efficiency. And you probably won’t get where you’re going any sooner.
37. Keep your tires properly inflated: If your tires aren’t inflated to the recommended PSI, they will wear down faster and you’ll need to replace them more often. Your car will also not be as fuel efficient, handling will suffer, and everything will cost more.
38. Shop around for auto insurance every 3 years: Insurance is one of those necessary evils that we have to pay for and hope to never use. Comparison shop around at least every three years, sooner if your situation changes (get married, move, etc).
39. Consider dropping collision and comprehensive coverage: Depending on your situation, it might make sense to self-insure your own car by dropping collision and comprehensive insurance. Check to see how much you can save, compare it with the value of your car (especially if it’s older), and decide for yourself.
40. Keep getting that routine maintenance: Those regular oil changes are important for maintaining efficiency and engine life. Those 30,000 and 60,000 checkups are important because you replace certain things that might break during operation. The 30,000 miles one isn’t as critical as the 60,000 – but both are good to get done. Find a mechanic you trust too.
41. Get a programmable thermostat: There’s a popular claim that for every degree you lower your thermostat in the winter, it’s 3-5% in savings on your bill. I don’t know if that’s true but I do know that not having it on when I’m not home will save you 100% on my bill when I’m not home!
42. Lower the temperature on your thermostat: OK, back to that popular statistic – lower the temp in the winter (or raise it in the summer) means the system won’t kick on as often. HVACs are either on or off, there’s no high or low type of setting. When you adjust the temperature, it just kicks on less frequently and so you use it less.
43. Replace your HVAC’s air filter: Your HVAC system pushes air through an air filter to ensure you don’t breath in a lot of junk. Remember to change these on a regular basis because they will get clogged with dust, dirt, bugs, etc. It’s best to change them once a quarter but you can get away with it less often if your air quality is better, just check the filter.
44. Wash your clothes in cold water: Many many years ago, detergents needed hot water to work well. As a result of regulations, and since 90% of the energy a washing machine uses is in the hot water, detergents work just as well in cold water because they use different soaps and surfactants. The end result is that for most applications you do not need hot water anymore.
45. Line dry your clothes: Line drying means you don’t use a dryer and thus use no electricity to dry your clothes. If you are the type who loves the feeling of clothes in a dryer, consider just doing your clothes and line drying things that don’t matter as much – towels, sheets, etc. Line drying can also extend the life of your clothes.
46. Get your furnace tuned regularly: There are all sorts of replaceable parts, from nozzles to filters, in any furnace and those things need to be replaced if you want to run at maximum efficiency.
47. Find and plug drafts: You’d be surprised how open your house is to the outside world no matter what season of the year you’re dealing with. Whether it’s cold air coming in during the winter or escaping during the summer, plugging these is crucial because who wants to cool/heat the entire neighborhood!
48. Unplug unused electronic devices: There’s something known as phantom electricity load, or what a device will use even when it’s turned off. We are an “instant on” society so many of our devices are actually still on, even when they look like they’re turned off. You can mitigate this by plugging devices into a power strip and turning that off, rather than each item.
49. Join Ibotta: Ibotta is a great little app that gives you rebates on things you buy. I’m a big fan because you link up your grocery store loyalty cards for quicker verification and because they give you free money to start. Give Ibotta a try.
50. Goodwill and Salvation Army are great too: It’s a little hit or miss with Goodwill and Salvation Army, since they’re relatively high traffic, but you can find some gems if you go when the new (used) product is being put out for sale. Ask someone working there for their schedule.
I just want to thank Natalie Bacon at nataliebacon.com (I left a link above as a special thank you- you should check out her site not only is she a neat lady but I love her site! and next I want to thank Life Hack for the great money saving tips I got from them- I love this site! It seems like they always have the go-to for any help you’re looking for and lastly a great big thank you to WALLETHACKS for a couple of their terrific hacks- their site is always a pleasure to visit as they have money money money for all their visitors to be gained in one way or another!
A Little Bit About Me
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