Have you ever heard the old adage “penny wise and dollar foolish”? If you have then you know what we mean when we say that many people who seem to take great care of their “big” bills have a hard time with their budget because their “little” bills end up wasting a whole lot of their money. Many people go out every day and unknowingly waste all sorts of money on smaller purchases, not realizing that a dollar here or two dollars there adds up to a whole lot of dollars at the end of each month.
Today’s blog will give you some everyday tips for saving money that, when added up, can really add up. Enjoy.
Commuting: Your daily commute not only cost quite a bit of money but it can also be quite stressful. You’ve probably heard about carpooling for years but the fact is that, if you can do it, it will save you money and anxiety as well as parking costs. You should also get an app for your smart phone to tell you where the lowest gas prices in town are and use the station closest to you with the best prices. If you can take public transportation or, even better walk or ride your bike to work, you’ll also save all sorts cash.
Fees: Even though having a savings or checking account with your local bank is pretty much a necessity these days, paying every fee that the bank wants to charge you certainly isn’t so make sure you do your due diligence and, if your bank is charging too much, consider changing banks. Also, paying your bills on time is extremely important so that you don’t get hit with late fees and your credit report doesn’t take it as well.
Food: Food is one area where many people waste all sorts of money. 8 dollar Starbucks coffees, eating out every day for lunch or ordering in at night because you’re exhausted are all certainly convenient but also costing you a lot of extra money at the same time. Planning your meals ahead of time is relatively simple, allows you to use your local newspaper flyer to get the best deal on any ingredients that you need and, if you have the time, you can also spend a few hours on the weekend preparing your food for the week. That way, when you get home exhausted from work, you can resist the temptation to order out and eat something healthy, nutritious and reasonably priced that’s already in your fridge.
Laundry: Unless you need to “dress to impress” every day, you should definitely avoid buying clothes that need to be dry cleaned. Wrinkle free shirts still look great and, in most cases, if you take them out of the dryer right after it stops and hang them up right away
they will look just fine. Also, look for specials on detergent and fabric softener whenever you can because both are quite expensive.
Movies: This is an area where people really tend to overspend. The fact is, going to the movies these days is extremely expensive and, unfortunately, most of the movies coming out these days definitely aren’t worth the cost. You would be much better off getting yourself a moderately priced flatscreen TV and watching movies at home or getting a service like Netflix. Unless you really want to see something on the “big screen”, staying home is going to save you a lot of money.
Utility Bills: There are a myriad of ways to save on your utility bills including shutting things off completely when you’re not using them, turning off lights when you leave a room and turning the temperature down in the winter and wearing heavier clothing. Using fans and summer rather than the AC is also an excellent way to save money and taking shorter showers as well. Running the dishwasher or washing machine only when full is another way to save.
Hopefully these tips have given you a few ideas on how to save on a daily basis. Just remember one thing, life isn’t always about saving, some times you need to expand your horizons and have a little fun as well. Going out to the movies, bar, or a restaurant isn’t always toxic to your finances if it’s done right.