Do you want to save money ? Not sure where to start ? Here are 10 easy and quick ways to get you started, with no effort:
- Check for special offers, coupons & sales online before buying anything. It takes no time, you just need to get into the habit of checking first. For example, Michaels (I love that store) has an ongoing sale of 50% off on any one item. All you have to do is get the coupon and present it at the cash! Why wouldn’t you? Same store, same product and just one click away. You should also download an app on your phone for flyers so you can easily access all weekly flyers instantly and even search by products. I have used Flipp in the past and really liked it but they are a lot more apps out there such as Checkout 51 or Snapsaves.
- Don’t “Impulse Buy”. Whether it is for a big or small ticket items, give yourself 24 to 48 hrs before making the purchase. Most of the time, you will just forget about it.
- Check out the price of gas around your neighbourhood and on your way to work. One of the stations will be cheaper than the others. Once you know which one, always fill up there. This can add up to quite a bit over an extended period of time. You can download GasBuddy and it will do all the work for you.
- Check out your library for free books, movies, DVD, access to computers and internet and sometimes free passes for exhibit and museums. A month ago I was ready to spend $75 on two new books; I didn’t think they would be available at the library since they were just released. Just before I hit the Confirm purchase on my screen, I decided to check the library anyway (on-line) and they did have both of them. I had to wait a couple of weeks for one but saved myself $75! Also lots of the books are now downloadable so you don’t have to make extra trips to the library and no late fees as the books get returned automatically.
- Bring your lunch to work. I know it sounds like extra work, but even if you just start doing it once or twice a week, the savings will add up. To make it easier, cook extra the night before and take the leftovers to work the next day. It will be healthier too (assuming you cook healthy dinners of course!).
- Learn to use up leftovers – Once a week, plan a “leftover dinner” where you can use up anything you have leftover in your fridge. This will reduce your food waste and save you money. Our favorites for leftover night are quiche, frittata or stir fry (with noodles or rice). I just cut up whatever veggies or meat we have left over and incorporate them to the dish.
- Only shop when you need to. Make a list and stick to it! If you love window shopping or walking thru malls, leave your wallet at home or only take what you want to spend.
- Only carry the cash you need and are willing to spend. I don’t usually carry cash with me since I can use my debit/credit card everywhere (free unlimited transactions). When I realized my kids always seemed to need change and how quickly it added up to $20 to $30/week, I stopped carrying cash, eventually they stopped asking!:) I do keep some at home in a safe place in case of an emergency.
- Run your washing machine, dryer and dishwasher during Off-Peaks hours. You could save over 50%! My Off-Peaks hours are between 7PM and 7AM and weekends (Rate is $0.065/kWh instead of $0.132) so check with your utility company to find out what yours are.
- Turn off the lights!!! And anything else you are not using. I grew up in Europe and energy-saving was a major concern. We were taught early on to conserve energy, I was brainwashed! Now, I go crazy when I get to my house and all the lights are on! There is just no added value to leaving lights on if nobody is in the room! When you leave a room, turn off the lights, you can turn them back on when you come back. Same with the TV, why is it on if nobody is watching it?
Here you have it! This should allow you to save some money in no time. But do save it!
How about you, do you have other easy and quick tips to save money?