Unfortunately for most of us, money flows out quicker and in more ways than we ever realized possible. It’s time to plug up those money holes and commit to greater savings. Getting car insurance quotes to compare and find the cheapest one, cutting subscription services that go unused and wearing a sweater before turning up the heat are all ways to save money without even noticing. But there are more, and we are ready to serve them up so you can sit back, relax and save!
- Use Those Gift Cards. Now that the holidays are over, you probably have a pile of gift cards just waiting to be used. Don’t shove them in a drawer to be forgotten. Make a point of using them so you can save money (on coffee, a meal or two, gas, etc.). Gift cards you purchase for yourself are also useful in keeping you on a strict weekly budget for various items, like for the supermarket, coffee shop, etc.
- Delete Those Cookies. No, we didn’t say eat those cookies (though you certainly can if you like!). The cookies on your browser pick up all of your likes and whatever has recently tempted you. It’s no coincidence that those cute shoes you were eyeing are now splattered in ads all over your social media page. When you delete cookies, your temptations can’t follow you around.
- Cut Those Subscription Services. We’re not saying you should get rid of all of them, of course, but do you really need Sling, and Netflix, and Disney, etc. etc.? Have a talk with the rest of your family and discuss what services you can get rid of and what you all want to keep. If your children are old enough, asking them to chip in for a service they primarily use, is a good start in teaching them financial responsibility.
- Pay with Cash. When you see your money going from your hands to someone else’s, you are more likely to leave a few more items in the store. Impulse buys will become more thought out and less frequent and internet purchases could become a thing of the past, which will ultimately save you a bundle.
- Hide Tempting Apps on Your Phone. With just a click, you have the power to get anything you want (well, not really, but for buying purposes, yes). What would happen if you hid your Amazon shopping app into a secured folder, and alongside of it, you hid your Uber or Lyft app, as well? You would give a second thought to buying another sweater you don’t need. And, you would get a little bit more exercise by walking home or taking public transportation.
- Reintroduce Yourself to Nature. All of the seasons are lovely and even though winter often gets a bad rap, it can truly be beautiful, too. Reintroducing yourself to the outdoors requires no money down and you might just get away from the everyday stresses for a little while. Take a brisk walk through the park or around the block. Drive to the nearest lake and sketch the landscape.
- Avoid the Signature Cocktails. Sure, “Honey Badger Blitz” and “Snickertini” sound fun and delicious, but keep in mind that you’re likely to be charged a good 50% or more for this type of bespoke cocktail than your usual drink. If you simply can’t stay away from one, split it with your partner to keep the cost low.
- Be Aware of the Pink Tax. Marketers know that they can get more money for the same product if it is marketed toward women. If you’re shopping for things like lotions, soaps, shampoo, razor blades, etc., go for gender neutral items that are marketed in gender neutral (or male oriented) packaging.
- Get Up Earlier. If you are someone who tends to rush out the door in the morning, do yourself (and everyone else in the household) a favor by getting up a few minutes earlier. This will allow you to start your day more deliberately. You’ll also be able to take a few minutes to make breakfast in your own kitchen instead of stopping somewhere on the way to work to pick it up. You’ll save money and give yourself a better nutritional boost for the day.
- Pretend You Didn’t Get that Raise. Congrats! You either got a new job or got a raise in pay. You’re excited about seeing a little extra money in your paycheck and daydream about what you might be doing with it. The best thing to do is – pretend you never got it. Take whatever additional money you’re bringing in and funnel right into your savings account.
Saving money doesn’t have to be painful. As a matter of fact, once you start looking for ways to pinch those pennies together, you’ll find it easy, satisfying, and fun.
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