Save money now
Many of us just spend away every day without really thinking about it. We get our paycheck, go out to eat, buy expensive coffee at coffee shops, buy prepackaged goods, run to the store often and by the end of the month we are struggling to pay our monthly bills.
There are many things you can do now to cut costs and be more wise with your spending. It takes a bit of effort but if you want to stop stressing about how your going to pay your winter power bills and other expenses its time to make some changes. Here are a few suggestions that may help.
MAKE WEEKLY SHOPPING LISTS
Stop running to the store as frequently because this waists gas and time. Make a shopping list of items you need and stick to the list. Make a weekly menu for your meals based on some ingredients you have on hand at home, and write on your list ingredients you need from the store.
BUY IN BULK
You will save money if you start buying in bulk. Many things can be purchased in bulk at some stores. In my area Waremart has a ton of things you can buy in bulk bins and I love this! You can also purchase meats in bulk and then cut them up in smaller meal sized portions and freeze them.
MAKE YOUR OWN MIXES
If you make muffins, pancakes, cornbread, cookies cakes and other things you can pre-make your own mixes and save some money. I make mixes ahead of time in quart glass jars with instructions on them.
STOP GOING OUT TO EAT AS OFTEN
You can seriously spend a lot of money in eating out. If you go back through your bank account and see how much you have spent over the course of the last 3 months or longer you will be shocked to see how much you have spent. You don’t have to stop entirely but you may want to reassess how often you go out and how much you are spending and cut down your eating out to way less.
TAKE YOUR LUNCH WITH YOU TO WORK OR WITH THE KIDS TO SCHOOL
I hate looking at my kids lunch menu from the school and seeing how often they have hot dogs and or flour and bread items they eat. Its not the ideal diet either! There are easy inexpensive things you can take with you for lunch. Dinner left overs frozen and heated up and put in a thermos to take with you is really awesome. I bought a couple for my sons and they enjoy soups, casseroles and other things in them.
STOP GOING TO THE COFFEE SHOP AND MAKE YOUR OWN FLAVORED COFFEE
I love making really strong coffee and often I add hot chocolate mix to it. There are many ways you can make your own flavored coffee and you can find ideas on the internet. When I go get flavored coffee it usually costs me over $6.50. If I went 3 times a week it would cost me $19.50. In one month that would be $78. In a year that would be $936. That is insane!
STOP BUYING PREPACKAGED DRINKS AND MAKE YOUR OWN
Lets face it, buying soda, energy drinks, and even bottled water and other drinks can also add up. Amazon has some reusable glass bottles that are awesome, plus glass is safe to reuse over and over. There are many drink options you can make or even just buying a good water filter and taking your own water with you where ever you go will save you a ton!
STOP TURNING UP YOUR HEAT AND PUT ON A SWEATER
If you use electric heat or gas for your home this can add up in the cold winter months. When you are cold put on some warm socks and a sweater before turning up the heat.
BUY ENERGY SAVING LIGHT BULBS
When I first started looking at ways to save money I saw something about energy saving light bulbs and thought about how often we have lights on in the house. I was previously buying the cheapest light bulbs I could find not thinking about what I was paying the electric company to use them. I found a brand at home depot called Ecosmart. They are LED 40 W and it says on the box $57 in lifetime energy savings per bulb. Now who wouldn’t go for that? A little cost for the bulbs but overall savings.
LIMIT YOUR TRIPS FOR SHOPPING AND ERRANDS
When you need to leave to shop and do errands try to plan things together so you can save on gas.
BUY SECOND HAND
If you need furniture, tools, and other items consider looking for them used instead of buying them new. This can save a ton of money! I love a particular style of Levi womens jeans and I wear them to work on the farm. I buy them for over half price used on ebay and save! I have purchased lots of used items on craigslist also or private parties on some of the marketplace pages on facebook.
SAVE ON SHAMPOO AND CONDITIONER
I discovered that adding water to both the shampoo and conditioner makes it go further and it works just as well as it does full strength. You can also get a spray bottle and mix a bit of conditioner to water and use it as a detangler.
USE CONDITIONER FOR SHAVING INSTEAD OF SHAVE CREAM
I learned this a long time ago. Conditioner, any brand really it doesn’t need to be an expensive one works great as an alternative to shave cream and also moisturizes the skin.
MAKE A BUDGET
I know this is all over the place but it really is true. Making a monthly budget really helps save money and also makes you more aware of where all your money goes.
I save a ton of money on my Amazon prime account buying suppliments and other things. I also save on shipping. It would seriously cost me a ton more if I had to drive somewhere for suppliments and or some of the other personal items we need. I LOVE Amazon!
COOK FOOD IN BULK AND FREEZE HALF FOR LATER
I do this quite often! If I cook a ham for example, we eat ham on night, then the next day I make a large pot of ham and white beans and freeze half of it for quick meal that I don’t have to plan out. There are many things you can make in large quantities and freeze half for a quick meal. Be creative!
MAKE YOUR OWN THINGS
I have learned over the years to make a lot of my own things, from toothpaste, salves, soap, dishwasher detergent, laundry soap, mixes, and much more! There are a lot of things you can learn to make instead of buying.
DITCH PAPER TOWELS AND NAPKINS
I stopped buying paper towels and napkins quite some time ago. I found some cloth napkins at yard and second hand stores and also make my own. I have made my own cloth napkins out of old flannel sheets and had a hole in them and I didn’t want to throw them away and also from flannel cloth I had on hand. You could also just buy large packages of wash clothes to use instead of cloth napkins. You are already going to be doing laundry right? So why not eliminate the cost of paper towels or napkins and save some money too?
There are so many ways to be creative to save money! I hope you can get inspired to save money and feel a bit more freedom for 2019!