Until you look for them… easy ways to save money are not obvious. You probably don’t think you’re wasting money but you can’t believe how much you get through every month. Well now you’ve got no more excuses. In this post I’ve put together a short list of easy ways to save money and I will update it as I find more. So here we go.
When you come across a real bargain – stockpile!
Here’s a way to save thousands over time. If you look hard you can find deals on stuff that’s discounted by up to 50%. If its something you use and does not have a best before date, grab a whole lot of it. With luck you might catch the same offer again as your stockpile is about to run out.
Get a clothes line
If you use a dryer every time you wash clothes, you’re wasting around $300 a year in electricity. Unless its raining, use a clothes line. Old fashioned – but it works. I find it therapeutic hanging clothes on a line on a sunny day. You might too. Your clothes will also last longer.
Dump the shopping cart
When you drop by the grocery store to grab a few things – don’t take a shopping cart… take a sturdy bag. If you have to carry your purchases you’ll be less likely to make spontaneous buys of stuff you don’t need.
Before you go to the store, make a list of what you’re going to buy. Do this at home. You’ll be able to check on what’s running short or has run out. Write your list in a small notebook which fits in your pocket so its easy to reference at the shop.
Research has proved that paying with cash and not a credit card reduces spending. It’s more ‘painful’ to hand over hard cash than your credit card. There are psychological reasons for this which link handing over cash with a ‘loss’ emotion. When you hand over your card you get it back. Its less traumatic.
Use the electric teakettle
Your electric kettle is the cheapest way to heat water. It costs less and is faster than heating water on the stove top or microwave. Whether it’s a cup of coffee or cooking a meal on the stove top, use the kettle to heat water in the first instance. Take the kettle to the stove and pour the hot water into the pot there. Over time you’ll save money.
Make your own eco-friendly household cleaner
Here’s a home recipe for a general household cleaner. Fill a heat safe glass container loosely with left over citrus peelings. Pour in equal amounts of white vinegar and boiling water then stir. Cover the container and let it sit for a week in a dark place. Once that’s done, strain out the citrus peelings and pour the liquid into spray top bottles.
Adopt a new habit – drink water. Maybe it’s not the most exciting beverage around but it costs almost nothing if you get it out of the kitchen faucet. Your body wants you to drink water to hydrate. It can use other things like tea, coffee or soda, but it has to process those things to do that. It has to use resources.
The short and long-term health benefits from drinking straight water are huge. Adopt drinking water as your primary beverage to get those benefits. Make a mind shift away from the coffee or soda default. Make water your new default.
Always have water with you in bottles when you’re not at home. At home have a glass jug full of water in your refrigerator. Lemon peelings add a nice tang.
This doesn’t mean you can’t drink anything else. Have a cup of coffee or a beer as a special treat and make it a little occasion. Something to look forward to. You can save 5 or 6 dollars a day with this tip.
Make a list before you go to the store
Look around your kitchen and home before you go the store. Make a list of what you need rather than what you want. You’ll spend less time and money in the store because you’ll be focusing on your list and not drifting around throwing random things into your cart.
Buy your clothes in neutral colors
These will go well with clothes you have already and give you more options. Accent with color using low cost brightly colored accessories like scarves, pins or neckties.
Carry a thermos
If you can’t manage without coffee – carry a thermos with you. That way you wont be tempted to make a routine of stopping at the coffee shop. Set your coffee machine up the night before and turn it on when you wake up. By the time you’re ready to go it will be done and you can pour it into your thermos and take it with you.
Ok I know its about more than just coffee when you treat yourself at a coffee shop. So make one visit a week to your favorite coffee shop as a special weekly treat. Set this up with a friend as a regular thing and you’ll have something to look forward to.
Keep an accurate record of all your expenditure. Carry a small notebook and pen with you at always. Every time you buy anything or pay a bill, write it down.
You’ll be able to analyse where you’re spending the most money and look for ways to economize in those areas. The first time you do this you’ll probably be surprised where most of your money is going. This will give you ideas where and how to economize.
Get these records on to a spreadsheet and you will be able to see which types of expenditure need attention. You’ll also be able to see projections of how small changes can make big differences to your finances. You’ll find more ways to save money.
Involve the whole family
Its important that the whole family is on board. Get them together around a table and explain the situation. Tell them why they all need to make efforts to save money. Suggest easy ways to do that and show them that its not going to be too painful.
Easy ways to save money – Conclusion
Saving money can become dispiriting if you allow it to. Try and see it as a challenge rather than a belt tightening exercise. You’ll be surprised how much money you can save without really affecting your lifestyle.
Keep records of how much you save once you set out on this. It can be rewarding. Commit to saving a specific amount of money for a specific purpose… maybe a family holiday? When you reach that goal take the holiday.
You’ll make it happen sooner than you think. I promise!
Thanks for reading our easy ways to save money post. Please share if you found it useful!
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