Tuesday, 22 January 2013

Super Simple Ways that You Can Save Money

Saving money has always been a bane for me – it was when I was a child (and I know you share the same sentiments as I do). But now that we are older and society seemed to have dictated that we should save, perhaps it is about time that we start doing so. It might not look like it but saving money is actually possible. You just have to take that first step (this is the hardest one, you guys). But once you have gone through that hurdle, you will soon find yourself surprised that your piggy bank has grown fat and heavy.
To help you out, take a look at 50 things that you can do right now to start saving. These are all very simple tactics – trust me – so anyone can do these. Some will even just take a few minutes of your very precious time (I am being sarcastic here). They all might seem very small but when combined with the others, you can save so much money now.

  1. Switch bank accounts to bank that respects you. Do not spend your money on high maintenance fees. Seriously, you should be earning and not paying.
  2. Turn of the television. There will be fewer ads to get tempted to buy and more time to relax and unwind. You’re welcome.
  3. Turn a critical eye on your collections. Could you trim down your expenditures on your collections and save the money instead?
  4. Sign up for free customer rewards. Having a rewards card will give you access to discounts and coupons (discounts and coupons = less spending).
  5. Make your own gifts. Rather than buying from the store, give a homemade touch to your presents by making them on your own.
  6. Master the 30-day rule. If you want to make an unnecessary purchase, wait for 30 days then ask if you still want that item.
  7. Write a shopping list and stick to it. Never go into a store without a strong idea of what you should buy. Otherwise, you’ll end up buying whatever takes your fancy.
  8. Invite friends over rather than going out. Almost all activities done at home is less expensive than doing it outside.
  9. Repair damaged clothing. Simple sewing can be done by anyone. It would be shame to throw a shirt (and borderline stupid) just because it has a missing button, right?
  10. Do not spend too much to entertain the kids. Children can be entertained cheaply. Let their imagination handle it.
  11. Ask for a rate reduction from your credit card company. Tell that you want a rate reduction or you’ll switch banks. Nothing will scare them more than losing a customer.
  12. Clean your closet. Get rid of some of the stuff in it. You can sell it, take it to a consignment shop, or donate them. Then you’ll have more space for newer clothes!
  13. Buy video games that have high replay value. Buy games that you can play over and over. Master it before buying a new one.
  14. Drink more water. This will make you eat less and digest better. Plus, this will also help you shed off those annoying extra pounds!
  15. Cut back on convenience foods. Simply and healthy home cooked meals are not only cheap; they are also healthy. Another way to lose weight!
  16. Give up expensive habits. Habits like drugs, alcohol and cigarettes will take your money away and give you nothing in return (that is, aside from possible illness).
  17. Quadruple your casserole recipe. Casseroles are nice and dishes to prepare. Make a big batch and freeze the leftovers for a quick meal.
  18. Turn off lights before leaving. The key here is to use less energy, especially when you are not using it. So spend a minute to check that all the lights in your home is turned off before leaving.
  19. Swap DVDs, music and books online. There are websites where you can cheaply swap and trade your media collection with others online.
  20. Maximize yard sales. You can get great stuff at great bargains. Stop by yard sales if you see them – you will never what you will find.
  21. Install CFL or LED bulbs. Yes, they will cost you more but that is only in the beginning. They eat less electricity and will last a long time so that’s a great investment right there.
  22. Install a programmable thermostat. During those times that you are not at home, program it so that cooling or heating is turned off.
  23. Buy appliances based on reliability. Research on appliances and pick the most efficient and reliable ones, and not because it is cheap.
  24. Clean your car’s air filter. This will improve your gas mileage by up to 7%. Plus, this is very easy – consult your owner’s manual to know how.
  25. Hide your credit cards. Do not put them in your wallet but in a safe place in your home so you are not tempted to reach out for them when you are in the store.
  26. Plan your meals around the store flyer. Look for the food items that are on sale in your grocery store flyer and create your meal plans from them.
  27. Find a cheaper grocery store. Find a cheaper grocery store. Check out the price of one product in a variety of stores and pick the one that sells it the cheapest.
  28. Make your own things. Try making your own bread. It is cheaper and healthier than having to buy from the store all the time.
  29. Do not spend just to de-stress. Instead of going to the parlor or spa, go home for some quiet time and meditate. Try doing yoga or stretching at home.
  30. Talk about your dreams. This is rather odd but talking about your dreams  (especially with your loved ones) makes it easier for you to plan and work it out.
  31. Maintain your appliances. Ensure that they are clean and are free from dust. Dust can block these devices and make them less efficient.
  32. Cancel unused club memberships. Stop paying the dues of clubs that you never use. Cancel them. You can always renew your membership when you need them.
  33. Shop for used. Buying used items from equipment stores and consignment stores can save you money rather than buying a new one.
  34. Keep your hands clean. This is the number one way to spare yourself from diseases (and those hefty hospital bills).
  35. Remove credit card numbers from your online accounts. So if you want to buy something one, you will be forced to dig out your credit card.
  36. Give a gift of service. Rather than giving an item, consider giving a service like babysitting, pet sitting, or lawn care.
  37. Do holiday shopping after the holidays. Wait two days after a holiday then shop for the items that you need for the next year. Everything will be much cheaper.
  38. Join a volunteer program. You can meet new people, get involved in a positive project and get some exercise – all without having to spend a dime.
  39. Reevaluate the things in your house. Take a look at each of the items in your home. If it does not have that much of a value, get rid of it.
  40. Try generic brands. You might discover that the store brand is just as good as the name brand. Plus, it can significantly reduce your grocery bill.
  41. Prepare meals at home. Get a cookbook and whip up your meals at home. They are cheaper and way healthier than dining out or take out.
  42. Switch to term life insurance. Keep this in mind: insurance is not an investment. Use the difference in cost to pay your debts and build wealth.
  43. Go for fuel-efficiency and reliability when buying a car. This will save you thousands over the long run. Do the research – it will pay off for you. Trust me.
  44. Do not go to stores for entertainment. Doing so will only encourage you to buy things that you do not need with money that you do not really have.
  45. Master the 10-second rule. When you pick an item to buy, stop for 10 seconds and ask why you are buying it and what you need it for.
  46. Rent out unused space in your home. If you have an extra bedroom that no one uses, rent it out. You can even rent out your basement. This could bring in a lot of extra money.
  47. Get rid of unread magazine subscriptions. Call their subscription and cancel for a refund. They will most likely give you a prorated amount back.
  48. Eat breakfast. This will give you energy for the entire day and decrease your desire to get a big meal come lunchtime.
  49. Swap babysitting with neighbors. Find a set of parents or two that you trust and swap nights babysitting with them.
  50. Do not fear leftovers. Jazz up your leftovers to make them look appealing and tasty. You can potentially end up with some delicious and surprising in the end.
Obviously, now that you have gone through the list, you should have realized that you cannot apply all the tips to yourself. But go through the list (go on, do it now) and pick out 5 or 10 that do apply then use them. In no time, you will find yourself saving from things that you never thought were once possible.


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