Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Ways To Save Money

Since I started being a WAHM, it gave me time to analyze my spending. I made it a goal to find ways to save money. I have been successful in cutting back and being able to have money saved back for emergencies. I thought that I would share some of those ways with you today.

1. Turn off all appliances when not in use. Things like the coffeemaker, microwave, computers, blow dryers, and phone chargers can use electric even when you are not using them. The microwave constantly uses electric when it has the clock running on it and the computers (even if it is in power saver mode) will use some electric when the power is on. If you do this through out the house you can save some on your electric bill every month.

2. Instead of hiring someone to do your landscaping, do it yourself. I use to hire someone to cut my yard for $40 a week, now I spend $5 a week on gas to cut my lawn myself. I save $140 a month now. I even found out I enjoy doing yard work. My daughter even helps me rake.

3. Pay bills online when available. Most companies have this feature on their websites now and charge nothing for the service. Some bills you can set up automatic withdrawal for free, which is another great way to pay bills without needing to use the post office. You can save money on stamps and envelopes this way.

4. Save money on buying clothes by shopping at thrift or discount stores. Thrift Stores are a great way to find gently used brand name clothes at places like these. Also, check sites like eBay for clothing items. I have found some great clothes this way.

5. Bake your own bread and sweets for your family. Not only will you save money but you will control what ingredients go into them. The savings between the ingredients and the store bought bread and sweets are a huge difference. The ingredients can make several rounds of your favorite bake goods. I make mine every Saturday morning and my daughter loves to help bake. This is a great way to get the kids involved in the kitchen.

6. Instead of going out to eat for lunch or dinner cook in some of your favorites. You can make them for less at home than you can spend on a meal at a restaurant and you can relax in the comforts of home. If you need recipes you can look them up on the internet, there are plenty of restaurant copycat recipes out there for you to remake what you want.

7. Make your own homemade cleaners. You can make cleaners that will do the same thing that the leading brands of cleaning products do. They are cheaper to make, so you will save money. You can find all of the ingredients needed at the local stores. Click here for an article about homemade cleaners.

8. On sunny days, turn off your lights and let natural light in through the windows by pulling back your curtains and blinds. If you do this enough you will start to see a savings on your electric bill.

9. When shopping, use coupons, rebates, and sales ads to save money. You can save a large percentage on your grocery bill when you use all of these together. Make a list when you go shopping and stick to it. I know it is easier done than said, but once you get into a routine, it will become easier for you to manage. Some families shop weekly and some families shop once a month for groceries. Find out which will fit your situation. I shop once a month (except for milk & orange juice) and find that I save money by limiting myself this way. You will need plenty of cabinet space to house your groceries when you choose this method.

10. Get cash back from sites like Big Crumbs when shopping online. Sometimes prices are cheaper on sites online than you will find locally in your stores.

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