We are all aware of all those simple things that save us money. Many are simple and easy. Often we tend to forget some bigger things than can actually save a bundle over time
We all know - cook from scratch, don't eat out, turn off lights and water, look for sales, clearance and markdowns, use leftovers, recycle or up cycle, etc.
There are other things that we tend to overlook.
- DON'T pay late fees or finance charges!!!!! Always pay your bills on time to avoid late fees - they can really add up. IF you charge - pay in full as often as possible each month to avoid finance charges. IF you have a card for emergencies (something that can't be paid in full in a month) - try to get one with a very low interest rate! These fees can eat up your money in a hurry
- NEVER pay full price - if at all possible. If you are clothes shopping, grocery shopping or car shopping - shop around and look for markdowns and deals. Most often on big ticket items you can barter a much lower price
- DON'T shop on impulse!!!!!!!!!! This can cost you a lot! Especially if looking for something big and sort of expensive - go home and think about it for a few days. If it is gone when you go back - just figure it wasn't supposed to be. ALWAYS contemplate on spending a chunk of money
- Stay HEALTHY - this is huge!!!!!!! This is probably one of the biggest money savers there is. Do whatever you can to live a healthy lifestyle. Eat right. Exercise in some way. Get tons of fresh air and sunshine no matter the weather). Take vitamins and herbs. Drink water. I know not everything health wise is that simple - but if you really work at taking care of your body, you will save a lot of money
- DON'T buy things you can make! Learn to make bread, biscuits, cook from scratch, make your own fancy coffee or tea. Learn to mend or sew. Alter clothes if needed. Re-use fabrics to make new things. Garden. Compost. Recycle.
- Other than staying healthy - the biggest saving strategy is STAY HOME! I know in this day and age you can still shop at home - stop it! (Unless it is your grocery order). Stop shopping online for stuff! Stay out of stores and roaming the aisles. Not only do you not shop, you save on gas and wear and tear on your vehicle, and you stay away from strangers.
- BARTER your bills. Not everything is etched in stone. ** Cable too high - call them and work out a new plan (all they can do is say no). ** Get yourself set up on a budget plan for electric or gas if at all possible. I pay the same amount every month for both - instead of high bills in winter and small bills in summer. (Makes planning easier) ** Call you car insurance and see if you can get discounts. Hitting a certain age, retirement, no travel for work, less miles per week, etc. When I quit working I let them know and got a discount for no work travel, probably just local driving, and probably less than 50 miles per week. If you are working from home or not working at the moment - call them and see if they can adjust your bill! It sure is worth a try.
- Cancel things you don't really use. I just canceled Netflix - I really don't watch it enough to make it worth it. Glen ordered it and he watched a lot - not me. It was going to increase to 12.99 month. That isn't a fortune saved - but around $156 a year I can use for something else. If I decide to get it back later - I can
- LESS grocery shopping! It seems this is happening more at the moment - as many people are ordering groceries and having them delivered or are doing pick-up. I think people are finally realizing you don't NEED to shop every week or many times every few days. Shop once or twice a month and then improvise with other things when needed. Learn to be creative with cooking. Shop the pantry and the freezer first!
- READ - libraries are our friend. Ours are closed right now - but they do have pick-up curb service if you order books online. I have tons of books at my home - and I must admit many have never been read. I read online as well. I watch You Tube and learn. I read blogs and learn. IMPROVE your intellect in may ways. You not only learn new stuff - but you can then teach others and you can learn new ways to do things. Learning can be a huge financial windfall in many ways.
Try to look at the bigger picture. It isn't always just the little everyday things we always talk about that saves. Those things are still HUGE and they DO make a big difference.
There are so many things that we just assume we must pay - that we can reduce or change. Question all your bills. Look for less interest charges. Pay cash when possible. Stay home more and shop less. Learn and improve yourself and your knowledge.
I hope this gave someone something to think about and maybe, just maybe you find something you can change and save a bit of money.
Remember a penny saved is a penny earned OR one you don't have to earn again!
Pennies make dollars!!!!!