Clever Ways to Save Money At Home
When we were working on paying off Mr Dentist’s student loans, we scrimped on expenses as much we could.
In doing so, we learned some pretty creative ways we could save money, that weren’t difficult or painful!
In fact, saving money with these methods have now become part of our normal life, even though we are now debt free.
Continuing to save money in small ways means that we can use that money for meeting our bigger financial goals–like buying our forever home and saving aggressively for retirement.
Today I want to share with you some of the clever and fun ways we found to easily save money, as well as some we have learned about more recently.
A lot of these will allow you to save money now, and in the future.
I hope you are ready to learn some awesome ways to save! Let’s get started.
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10 Ways to Save Money
1. Turn Down the Thermostat.
Keeping your thermostat too high in the winter is a sure fire way to use more energy than needed. Growing up we were told to put on a sweater if we were cold.
And now I am telling you the same. Save energy (and get a lower energy bill) by keeping your thermostat lower in the winter.
2. Learn to Cut Hair at Home.
When we got engaged, Mr Dentist started trusting me to cut his hair.
I don’t do anything fancy, but I have learned to do a decent job. Now, I still cut his hair and we also cut our boys’ hair at home.
This has saved us HUNDREDS (if not thousands) in hair cut expenses over the years.
And all that is needed is a simple hair clipper like this one. I promise, it will pay for itself multiple times over!
3. Don’t buy Paper Towels.
We do not have paper towels in our home. I use dish towels for drying dishes, and hands, in the kitchen.
And I use dish cloths for hand washing my pots and pans, etc. Both of these are reusable and last years! I still have many dish towels from when we first got married.
4. Re-Use Plastic Bags.
Do you use ziploc bags to store food or items? We do on occasion. And when we do, I will wash those bags out with hot water and dish soap and reuse them again and again.
I don’t toss them out until they get holes in the body of the bag. This allows me to spend less because I am not buying them as often.
5. Save and Eat Leftovers.
To help save on food, we do not throw away our leftovers after dinner. We save them and use them for lunches at work or a left over night for dinner one day a week.
Our favorite way to keep leftovers fresh is to use these food containers. They don’t leak and last forever!
6. Pay with Cash.
This might seem counter-intuitive. But there is actually a physical response to buying items with cash.
When you see that money actually leaving your hand it hurts (just a little bit) and is therefore harder to spend.
There are actually studies about the psychology of spending with cash versus a credit card. So if you want an easy way to save money, start paying for items with cash.
7. Shop at the Thrift Store.
I know some people cringe at the idea of buying, and wearing, clothes that someone else has worn. But it is possible to find some GREAT items and deals at thrift stores.
When my boys were really young, this was one of the best ways to get baby clothes for a good price.
AND you can often find brand new items, with the tags intact, in a thrift store. So don’t be scared to explore and see what treasures you can find.
8. Do A No Spend Challenge.
We recently did a no spend challenge and actually had a lot of fun with it.
It is a great way to do a budget reset and save some money fast. You can do a no spend challenge for a weekend, a week even a full month!
9. Do a Savings Challenge.
There are lots of ideas and tricks for doing a saving challenge. Some of my favorites are to save every $1 bill you come across in your use of cash. Or to save every $5 bill that you come across.
This could be done for a month or even a whole year. There are so many other savings challenge ideas you could check out as well.
10. Do a Pantry Challenge.
The pantry challenge is a great way to save money on groceries super fast.
In this challenge you go through your fridge, freezer and pantry and plan your meals around what you already have on hand. Then you set a small weekly budget (say $25 or $50) to supplement what is in your pantry.
You will use up what you have but also spend a lot less on food during the challenge, allowing you to save what you don’t spend.
How to Save Money in Every Day Life
Utilize Meatless Meals.
Meat is often the part of a dinner that costs the most amount of money. So when you are planning your meals, try adding in some meals that don’t need meat.
Using a few of these a week, and several a month, will definitely help you cut down your grocery budget and save money.
Take food to Sporting Events.
If you have kids in activities and sports, it can be so tempting to just buy the food that is at those events.
We experienced this during fall soccer for our kids. But the food is inevitably more expensive.
However, if you plan ahead, you can bring food and snacks and have a picnic. This will feed everyone while there and is an easy way to save money! Win, win!
Get More Sleep.
This might seem like a silly tip, but trust me it works on multiple fronts.
First of all, if you go to bed earlier, you won’t be able to indulge in those late night snacks–meaning your food won’t disappear as quickly.
And, second, if your body is always tired, it is going to feel more hungry and want more food to help you stay awake and energized for the day. So you will end up eating more throughout the day–causing you to spend more on food overall.
Get to sleep on time. It is worth it.
When you have electronics, or charging cords, that aren’t in use–unplug them.
Cords that are plugged in still use a little bit of electricity, which is just wasted if it isn’t charging anything.
We are often guilty of leaving our phone chargers plugged in. But if you can unplug everything, and/or turn off power strips when not needed, those small actions will result in savings on your energy bill.
Final Thoughts on Creative Money Saving Ideas
I hope this list has helped you to see that finding ways to save money does not have to be hard or make your feel miserable.
Saving money really can be easy. And if you can find ways to make it fun, or set a challenge for yourself, then the whole process is a better experience overall.
What are some of your simple ways to save money? Let me know in the comments!