58 Tips to Cut Down on Your Expenses

58 Ways To Save RateTake

As the old saying goes, “Save for a rainy day.”

However, it’s important to realize that it is not only for times of need that you should be saving money – that is, you should not be only be preparing for a time when the figurative weather gets so bad that there is nothing to harvest.

Rather, you should be setting aside a small amount regularly so you can invest on fruit-bearing assets like a business, perhaps stocks, and, of course, real estate.

When Should You Start Saving?

Saving money is easy for some but not for others.  People in the latter category include those who put off the deed, thinking that they would start saving when their incomes increase or after their debts have been paid off.

The thing is, once they have more income, their expenses increase, too.

They start to spend for things that they have always wanted, like more expensive food, a new car, and so on.  While this is, by all means, none of anyone’s business, it’s not right to wait.

Remember that the right time to start saving is now, not later. 

If you are one of those who is having a hard time saving, then this advice might help: regardless of how little or how much you earn, and no matter how much your expenses may be, a small portion of your income should be set aside.

If $1 is saved per day, it totals to $365 in a year and $3,650 in 10 years.  If you save $10 per day, that’s $3,650 in a year and $36,500 in 10 years.

This may not be much to look at, but it’s still better than nothing; and, it goes without saying, the more you set aside, the bigger the total amount will be.

Of course, this is for as long as you don’t keep dipping your hand inside your own proverbial cookie jar.

Should You Deprive Yourself?

Whether you are dreaming of setting up your own business, buying your first or additional property, having a comfortable and luxurious retirement, or leaving something for your future kids and grandkids, there are simple ways that you can do to shave off some of your expenses.

It doesn’t mean self-deprivation, however; it means being wise.

This, in one sense, means cutting down on things that are not truly necessary but still being able to enjoy your hard-earned money.

For example, why not consider riding a real bike around your neighborhood instead of riding a stationary bike at the gym?

Doing so would cost you less in the long run – you can invest on a functional vehicle that you will be able to use other than for regular exercise.

You can then keep what you would otherwise spend on your monthly gym membership.

How Can You Save Money?

Setting your priorities straight is the first step, and your savings should be on top of your list, not at the bottom.

To put it another way, you need to include your savings in your budget, not wait for whatever remains after all expenses.

In other words, treat your savings in the same way that you treat your debts or bills – set the money aside and once you’ve done that, don’t give yourself permission to take from it.

After all, you generally can’t take your money back when you have already given it to the electric company.

Now, in order to “afford” to save, you need to cut back on some of your expenses.  Here are some ways to do it:

Financial

Credit cards, student loans, and other debts put a huge dent on your wallet.  Not only do they prevent you from saving money, the interest also adds up.

If you total them all, the amount can be staggering, so you need to address them as soon as you can.  In other words, get out of debt.

It might help if you look at your debts in the face, so to speak.  Use a spreadsheet to list down what you owe.

Include the balance and the interest rate as well as the minimum payments.  You will then have a clear picture of what you need to settle, then you can make a plan.  Commit yourself to paying them, not adding to them.

Also, you need to be wise in your investments since these, too, have fees attached to them.

·         Credit Cards

Use only one or two credit cards if you need to because each one normally charges annual fees.  Also, it would be tempting for you to use them, which would contribute only to increasing your payables.

If you have debts from a credit card company and your rate is more than 13 percent, then you can ask them if you can be granted a reduced rate.

You can also look into 0 percent balance transfers.  Still, when you do, make sure to read the fine print.  Check the balance transfer fee, the accrued interest, and so on.

For instance, if the 0 percent interest is good for, say, 6 months, then make sure to pay the amount during that time frame; otherwise, you might end up in a debt with even higher interest rates.

·         Student Loan

If you are still paying your student loan, then you may want to look into refinancing it.

There are lenders that offer low rates for those with good records, such as having good grades from top schools, have a good income, and so on.

CommonBond says the average savings of their borrowers is more than $14,000 while Earnest says their clients’ average savings is almost $22,000.

·         Bank Account

Rather than big banks, you may want to switch to a community bank or a credit union because they usually offer lower rates for services and higher interest on savings.

Their features may not be as wide as commercial banks, but they usually require less minimum balances.

Also, you may want to switch to a free checking account instead of paying for it and being required to keep a minimum maintaining balance.

·         Insurance

You can save a lot of money if you bundle your insurance policies in one company.  This means instead of buying separate plans for your car, home, and life, you can look into bundled policies.

·         Investment

There are ways to make your money work for you, such as placing it in low-cost investments like index funds (a type of mutual fund) and ETFs (Exchange-Traded Fund).

If you hire an investment manager, then you can consider companies that charge less than the common rates, such as Wealthfront, which charges $18.75 per month for an account of $100,000.

Betterment, meanwhile, bills $150 per year for an account of $100,000 or more, but they charge more if the average account balance is less than $100k.

Bills and loans charge interest for late payments so it’s best to automate payments so as not to miss your deadlines.

Housing

·         Downsize Your Home

Bigger does not always mean better.  Larger properties tend to equate to bigger expenses – more lights, more heating, bigger lawn to tend, more time to clean, and so on.

If you think your house or apartment is too big for you, you may want to consider getting a smaller place.

·         Live with People

Living alone or as a couple has many advantages, but if you want to cut down on your house expenses, you might want to get a roommate.

It would require some adjustment on both parties, but it would mean sharing the bills as well as the chores.

Alternatively, you can think of living with your parents, sibling, or other relatives.

It would be wise, of course, to contribute in some way and not live like a guest, but this would save you money nonetheless compared to renting your own space.

On the other hand, if you already have a house – and depending on its design and your situation – then you might consider the possibility of getting tenants.  This way, you can earn some extra money.

However, being a landlord or landlady is another story.

·         Refinance Your Mortgage

If you are paying off your house, then you can think of refinancing your mortgage.  This means getting a new loan in order to replace the old one.

As explained by Bankrate, the two types of refinancing are rate-and-term and cash-out.  With the former, your new loan pays off the old one and the remaining debt is adjusted to a lower interest rate and/or shorter payment period.  The latter, on the other hand, means that you can borrow an amount above your mortgage debt.

·         Check Your Property Tax Assessment

You need to be familiar with everything that you’re paying for, including your property tax.  Check the assessment and question mistakes, if any.

Also, if years have passed since the last assessment, the amount might have already changed and you may be paying more than you have to.

Utilities

·         Phone and Internet

It used to be just landlines, but now, it’s mobile phones everywhere.  It means incoming and outgoing calls and texts just about anywhere you are and at any time of the day.  It also means expenses.

If you are still considering buying a cell phone, then you should shop around for the best package that would be suited for your needs and usage.

An installment plan that bundles both phone and service is often a better choice than a multi-year contract on services.

You might also want to consider getting the prepaid or pay-as-you-go option if you’re not a heavy user since you can better control your expense rather than be tied up on phone bills every month.

If you still have a landline that you hardly use, you might want to have it disconnected, unless you have a need to keep it.  There are also low-cost services like Vonage that you can check out.

If you subscribe to an Internet service, then you should consider your plan.  If you don’t use it much because you spend more time at your workplace, a lower data plan might be better.

Moreover, you can use apps like Skype and Whatsapp for phone calls and texts to save on mobile phone bills.

·         Cable

Do you really need cable TV?  If you watch only a few channels for a few hours per day, then you might want to switch to an online streaming service like Hulu, Netflix, Amazon Prime, among others.

Conversely, you might want to opt out of it altogether and go back to the basics – borrowing books from the local library, getting into a hobby, or learning a skill that you can use.

·         Water

Water is a necessity but it does not mean using it carelessly.  There are ways you can save water as well as save money.

o   Shower

According to Energy.gov, you can save from 3 to 5 percent on water heating costs for every 10 degrees Fahrenheit that you lower down the temperature of your water heater.

You can also save 4 to 9 percent annually by insulating it.  Low-flow shower heads, meanwhile, can save you by as much as 25 to 60 percent in water usage.

o   Laundry

Unless your clothes have oil stains, you can opt to wash your clothes with tap or unheated water.

Energy Star gives some tips on how to save when doing your laundry, including air-drying clothes and fully loading the tub each wash.

Also, you may want to learn how to use dry-cleaning kits.  This will save you money from professional dry cleaning services, although your initial results may not be on par with theirs.

o   Other Water Uses

Instead of using a hose to wash your car, you will save water by using a bucket.  You can also opt to hand-wash your dishes instead of using a dishwasher.

·         Electricity

Another necessity, electricity bills can take a big chunk of your budget if not used wisely.  Here are ways you can conserve:

o   Lights

You should consider switching from incandescent bulbs to Energy Star-certified bulbs.  The latter consumes 70 to 90 percent less electricity than the former.

A 60W bulb, for instance, can save you $30 to $80 in energy expenses over the bulb’s lifetime, according to Energy Star.  Multiply that with the number of bulbs you have in your home and the savings increase exponentially.

Moreover, the government organization says Energy Star-certified LEDs can last up to 22 years.

o   Heating and Cooling

Similarly, you can open the windows or use electric fans instead of using air conditioning during temperate days.

You should also adjust the setting on your thermostat depending on the situation.  For example, if you’re away, you don’t have to turn up the heat and you can turn it down when it’s summer.

You can also invest on a programmable thermostat that automatically adjusts room temperature as needed.

It might be costly but, according to a white paper by Nest Learning Thermostat, their product can offer you savings of around 10 to 12 percent on heating and around 15 percent on cooling.  Of course, the results may vary from household to household.

o   Switching Off and Unplugging

It goes without saying, you should turn off lights that are not in use.  Also, make sure to close the refrigerator properly and, if not needed, switch off appliances.

For instance, if you’re watching television, then don’t forget to turn off the radio or your computer.  Small, conscious efforts like these can save you dollars.

On a related note, televisions, cable TV boxes, sound systems, toasters, coffeemakers, and other appliances, as well as computers and monitors consume electricity even if they’re turned off.

You should, therefore, unplug these devices when not in use; otherwise, you’re spending for something that you’re not exactly utilizing.

If unplugging seems to tedious for you, then you can invest on power strips that you can switch on and off easily.  There are some that have individual switches for each socket and others with one switch for the whole strip.

·         Other Tips for Household Savings

If you have some money to spend but want to save in the long-run, you can consider investing on some smart options, such as:

o   Solar Panels

Unlike in the past, solar panels are becoming more and more affordable.

It’s a wise option because apart from using an environmentally friendly source of energy, you also get to save on electric bills and can also be eligible for rebates, depending on where you live.

o   Air Sealing

You can lessen your expenditures by air-sealing your house and adding insulation in crawl spaces, attics, and basement rim joints.

According to Energy Star, you can save an average of 11 percent on total energy costs or 15 percent on cooling and heating.

o   Cool Roof

Cool roofs are designed to reflect sunlight and not absorb heat, so the interior of your home will be less hot than if you use a standard roof.   This equates to less energy consumption for having to use air conditioning.

Shopping

Shopping is enjoyable, especially if you have money to spend.  However, if you are trying to save, impulsive buying or shopping sprees are a no-no.

You need to be wise, especially because stores and malls are determined to make you spend even if you don’t want to.  Here are some tips that you might be able to use:

·         Groceries

Groceries are regular expenses that can take a big chunk of your budget but, of course, it’s not a good idea to sacrifice food and household items just to save money.

Still, there are ways to shave off some dollars from your grocery shopping, such as:

o   Don’t Shop While Hungry

A report on Live Science says that hungry shoppers tend to spend more and they also tend to buy high calorie products.

o   Look at Shelves Below or Above Eye Level

When shopping, don’t just scan items at eye level because these often display the most expensive products.

Look above or below them and you just might find similar items at lower cost.

o   Use Coupons

Check online for discount coupons that you can download, such as those on Coupons.com or SmartSource.com.

You can also look into the cash-back offers for specific items on Savingstar.com and similar sites.

Similarly, your favorite grocery might be offering memberships.  Remember, though, that you should compute the benefits against the membership fee, otherwise it would not be worth it.

o   Declutter Your Pantry

To ease your grocery expenses temporarily, check your pantry and try to finish off your stock, buying only perishables and produce.  Work around what you have and plan your meals accordingly.

o   Make a List

When it’s time to re-stock, make a list of the items that you need and stick to it.  Don’t get tempted to buy other products that are not on your list.

Alternatively, you can give yourself a small budget, say $10, to buy something that’s not listed, but don’t go beyond the amount you set.

o   Find Sales

A sale would be a good time to store items that you constantly use, such as shampoo, dishwashing liquid, detergent, and so on.

Of course, always check the expiration dates, especially for food products, and don’t buy a lot if you won’t be able to finish them before they expire.

o   Compare Prices

You can also check different local stores to find out which one sells your favorite items the cheapest.

Consider buying in bulk, too, because these are usually sold for less than when you buy retail.   Bigger packages or bottles might also be cheaper per ounce than smaller ones.

o   Buy generic

Generic products are usually sold at a lower price even though they are generally the same as branded ones.  Of course, it would be wise to try a product first to see if it suits you.

o   Buy Local, In-Season Produce

Always buy produce that are in season and consider those that are locally grown rather than imported from other countries.

Also, choose whole vegetables over pre-cut ones because the latter, as well as prepared foods, tend to be a tad more expensive.  You should also consider buying whole foods rather than processed ones.

o   Grow Your Own

If you can, try to grow your own herbs and vegetables.  Not only will you be able to set aside a few dollars, you can also feel the pleasure of being able to consume what you grow yourself.

Similarly, if you have time and space, you can try to raise your own chickens and benefit from the eggs.

There are many other ways to cut down on grocery expenses, such as having your own water bottle instead of buying bottled water to bring with you and using cash instead of a card to limit your spending.

·         Clothes, Shoes, and Personal Items

Similar to grocery shopping, you also need to be prudent when shopping for clothes, shoes, and other personal items.  Don’t walk into a store and suddenly decide to buy an expensive tie or lipstick.

It is best to impose a rule on yourself to delay major purchases (e.g., anything more than $50 or $100) by, say, two days or one week.  This will give you time to consider if it’s just an urge to spend.

Also, when in doubt, get out – in other words, if there’s a small nagging feeling inside you not to buy, don’t.  Wait until you’re 100 percent sure.

o   Check What You Have

For clothes and shoes, always check your closet first.  Sometimes, there are hardly-used items there that are again in vogue.

Also, you don’t want to buy a piece of clothing, footwear, or accessory that won’t match anything else or one that you won’t exactly be able to use for any of your activities.

If you find a lot of clothes and bags or other items that you really don’t want to use anymore but are still in good condition, then you can perhaps host a clothes swapping party with your friends.

You might also think about having them fixed or altered to match the current fashion.

o   Browse Through Thrift Shops

During your days off, set aside time to check out thrift shops or consignment stores.  You’d be surprised at great finds in such stores, sold at a much lower price than in the malls.

Just remember, when buying clothes, check the maintenance instructions.  Dry-clean only clothes tend to be more expensive to maintain.

o   Do It Yourself

In relation to clothes, you can also consider buying do-it-yourself personal grooming kits.  You can save money by coloring your own hair and doing your own manicure and pedicure.

There are many instructional videos online that can help you.  If this is difficult, then you can perhaps have a weekly date with a friend so you can do these together.

o   Shop When It’s Sale Season

Prices usually drop when items are not in season, such as air conditioners during winter.

Take advantage of this, as well as back-to-school promos, Black Friday or Cyber Monday deals, and other big sales.  There are usually end-of-season bargains, just before new items arrive at shops.

o   Other Shopping Tips

You might want consider a previous model or design rather than the current one, because these are usually sold at a lower price.

On that note, choose designs and colors of clothes, shoes, and bags that can be good for different occasions, can be mixed and matched with your other clothing, and won’t easily go out of fashion.

Transportation

·         Walk or Ride a Bike

If your destination can be reached on foot or by riding a bike, then you should considering walking or biking.

Not only do these two methods cost virtually nothing, it also has many benefits like giving you exercise, letting you clear your head, and allowing you to appreciate your surroundings.

Of course, if you use a bike, you need to practice road safety and spend for regular maintenance and bike locks, but those costs little compared to car maintenance, parking, and gas.

·         Take Public Transportation

Taking a bus or train to your destination is one money-saving practice that you can apply.  It costs little and you can just sit back and relax, letting someone else handle the wheel.

·         Share a Car

If you have a partner, then you can think of not using one car each.  Two means twice the maintenance expense, registration, insurance, and so on.  You can come up with an arrangement on how you can get by with one vehicle.

You can also share your car with other people by carpooling.  Your passengers can give their share on gas expense and it lessens the number of vehicles on the road.

Conversely, you can consider being the passenger in a friend’s or officemate’s car.

·         Search for Better Car Insurance

Insurance companies are not created equal, neither are policies.  You can shop around for those offer better rates.

It needs to be emphasized here, however, that you should not sacrifice your coverage for lower payments.  You still want to be properly covered in case of road mishaps.

·         Refinance Your Car

You may want to refinance your vehicle in order to save money.   Bankrate lists down five situations in which you can consider this option, including a drop in interest rates, an improvement in your credit score, and a setback in your finances.

Also, you might not have gotten the best deal when you first bought your car or you want to purchase the vehicle because your lease is expiring.

Of course, there are factors to consider such as the current value of your vehicle, the condition, the age, and the outstanding balance.  Car refinancing not really a good option if your loan balance is more than the worth of your car.

·         Invest on a Different Car

If you are looking into having more savings in the long run, then you might want to consider replacing your vehicle with one that would generate less expense.

For instance, a vehicle with a small engine generally uses up less fuel than one with a big engine.

A hybrid car is also a good option.  FuelEconomy.gov has listed down the new models along with the EPA rated combined miles per gallon (45 percent highway and 55 percent city driving) and annual fuel cost savings based on 15,000 annual miles.

The 2016 Toyota Prius Two Eco, for instance, has an EPA rated 56 combined MPG with yearly fuel savings of $387, while the 2017 Honda Accord Hybrid Touring has a combined MPG of 48 with annual fuel cost savings of $641.

·         Keep Your Car Well Maintained

Do not scrimp on maintenance because it generally costs less than repairs.  It also helps you in driving safely, avoiding potential accidents caused by malfunctioning car parts.

Surely, you can imagine the trouble it would cause you if your vehicle breaks down or, worse, causes damage to other vehicles, property, or other people.

Tires last longer if your wheels are properly aligned.  It will also keep you from swerving to the right or left.  Moreover, they should be properly inflated – remember that air expands or contracts, depending on the temperature.

Your engine has to be regularly tuned, and the oils and fluids changed.  Not only that, you need to free your car from any excess weight because it requires more energy, thus, more fuel consumption.

·         Practice Sensible Driving

Sudden stops and acceleration as well as speeding can take a toll on your car, both on your tires and your gas usage.

If you want to save money, then drive sensibly and carefully – it will cut your highway gas mileage by 33 percent and city gas mileage by 5 percent, according to FuelEconomy.gov.

That’s equivalent to savings of around $0.11 to $0.74 per gallon.

Also, you may want to just turn off your engine instead of letting it run on idle.

Dining

Dining out is a part of many people’s social lives, not only to bond with family and friends but also to unwind and relieve themselves from stress.

While it’s certainly okay to go out, the total expenditure in a year can be staggering if you go out once or twice a week.  Add to that the amount you spend if you buy lunch and coffee while at work.

Just to illustrate, if you buy a small Café Latte every morning before you go to work and it costs $2.95,  that’s $14.75 for 5 days.

For the year 2015, there were 261 working days, so that totals to $769.95 for coffee alone.  If you include one chocolate chip cookie at $1.95 each, that’s $1,278.90 in one year.

You are, of course, at liberty to eat out and you should not deprive yourself.  However, if you’re trying to save money, then you can do the following:

·         Cook

It’s best to pack your refrigerator and pantry and prepare your own food.  This can be tiring, of course, especially when you come home from work hungry.  It’s worth it, though.

What you can do is plan your menu in advance.  During the weekend, chop the meat and veggies according to the dishes you plan to cook during the weekdays.

Store the portions separately in the refrigerator or freezer, so when it’s time to cook your dinner, you can simply pull out whatever you need, all cut and portioned accordingly.

If you have time, challenge yourself to learn how to make your preferred dishes from your  favorite restaurants.

·         Bring Your Lunch

Bringing packed lunch to the workplace is a smart, healthy, and cost-effective thing to do.  You don’t have to rush in the morning to do this.

One way is to cook a large dinner and set aside a portion to bring to work the next day.

You can also prepare your salad in advance.  The Daily Muse provides an interesting way to do this: put your salad in mason jars and store them in the refrigerator.

You can prepare five jars (or five servings) because the article says that they stay fresh the whole week,.  Thus, when it’s time to leave for work, just grab a jar and you’re ready to go.

It’s also best to prepare to your own coffee.  It’s not so hard and it will save you lots when you add it up.

·         Get Together at Home

If you’re going to spend time with friends and family, why not do it at home?  You and your buddies can pitch in, shop for ingredients, and work together to prepare the meal.  You can then take turns hosting future get-togethers.

If this is not possible, then you can have a potluck, each one bringing a dish.

Should it be unavoidable to go to a restaurant, then you may want to check the menu online first.  This will allow you to become familiar with the dishes and which ones you can order without going beyond your budget.

If you have a choice, suggest going to a bring-your-own-drink place because in many cases, one glass you order in a restaurant costs as much as a bottle that you can buy elsewhere.

With BYODs, you can enjoy your drink without worrying about the cost so much.

You also have to keep in mind that restaurants employ strategies to make customers subconsciously decide to spend more.

For instance, a $9.99 dish appears to be cheaper than a $10 one.  They use fancy names for ordinary fare and make good use of graphic design (layout, color, font, placement of items, etc.) to make items seem more attractive.   LifeHack lists down 16 of these menu tricks.

Travel

Traveling for holiday should be a relaxed and enjoyable affair, and you don’t want to come home regretting how much you spent for the trip.  If you want to save a few dollars, then remember that timing is a very important factor in planning and booking.

·         Find Out More About Your Destination

First, you need to decide when you will go.  The best is during off-peak season, when tourism is not at its busiest.

If you are traveling to the northern hemisphere, for instance, you can go before or after summer, with the weather still nice but without the crowd.  The Christmas season tends to be busy, so fares and accommodation rates are usually high.

·         Choose Weekdays

Plane tickets and room rates can be more expensive during holidays and weekends or, to put it another way, you may be able to find better rates when it’s an ordinary day.  So, plan your trip during weekdays.

·         Book in Advance

Once you decide where and when you will go, book in advance.  Usually, you will get better deals when you make your reservations ahead of time.

·         Do Your Research

You can also check out sites like The Flight Deal and Secret Flying to see if there are flights that are offered at less cost.

Yapta is another website that you may find helpful – it will let you know if the price of your plane ticket drops after you bought it.  This way, you can determine if it’s practical to rebook.

Health and Fitness

Staying healthy should be part of your priorities; after all, what use will your savings be if you’re not healthy enough to enjoy it?

Still, you don’t have to be careless when it comes to medical expenses – you can still find some ways to save some cash without sacrificing proper health care.

·         Eat Right

As the old saying goes, “An apple a day keeps the doctor away.”  In other words, by eating the right kinds of food (and getting enough rest), you will have less chances of getting sick, thus the less need to spend on medical care and taking medications.

·         Exercise

You don’t need to spend much on gym membership to get proper exercise.  Choose to walk or ride a bike, get into sports like tennis or swimming, do yoga, or get instructional videos so you can work out at home.

Of course, if you plan on exercising at home, you need to know your health status and you should take safety measures to prevent potential injuries.

·         Medical Care

If you do need to see a doctor and get health services, you can check the Healthcare Blue Book to see if the amount you’re paying for a particular service is reasonable.

Always check your bill and documents to see if you’re being charged for services that you did not receive and ask for explanations if any item is unclear.  You should question errors.

It also does not hurt to ask for a discount if your medical bill is big, especially if you will be paying in lump sum.  On the other hand, you might try to request for a payment plan if the total is too much on your budget.

·         Medicines

In many cases, doctors will recommend branded medicines, which can be quite expensive.  You can ask your physician if generic medicine will do.  You might also want to ask if they have samples that they can give you.

If you need to take certain medications for a long time, then you may want to check mail-to-order pharmacies online because there are those that charge less than local, brick-and-mortar pharmacies.

Other Tips to Minimize Spending

Your spending basically reflects what your priorities are.  If your cash out is not in line with your goal, then it’s time to look into how you can manage your finances better.  You can also try to do the tips below:

·         Pay with Cash

If you have noticed that you spend less when you make cash purchases, then you’re not alone.

A research conducted by business services company Dun & Bradstreet, according to a report on NerdWallet, found that shoppers tend to spend 12 to 18 percent more when they use their credit cards.

Other experts have found similar results, including a study published in the Journal of Consumer Research in April 2012, which found that people who use plastic focus more on the benefits of the purchase rather than the cost, while those who use cash are more conscious of the price.

·         Use Promo Codes and Sign Up for Membership

The savings you gain from using coupons and promo codes may not be much during checkout, but add up all those cents after a year or so and you will see its benefits.  Take the time to gather these and present them when you check out.

Also, if your favorite store offers membership, then you should look into that.  Normally, you will enjoy discounts and other special deals not available to non-members.

However, you should compare the membership fee against the benefits, because if you don’t really buy often and a lot, you just might be spending instead of saving.

Similarly, you might want to check out gift cards that being sold for less than the card’s value.  Gift Card Granny is an online marketplace for this, but because you will be dealing with the reseller, you need to make sure that they are trustworthy by checking reviews.

·         Avoid Looking at Advertisements

If you subscribe to emails about sales and special deals, you may want to either cancel them or you can set your email to automatically place them in a dedicated folder.

This way, you won’t be seeing deals that might be too tempting to resist.  Alternatively, you can create a different email account that is meant solely for these subscriptions and check it only when you’re ready to buy an item.

·         Track Your Expenses

Keeping tabs of where your money goes will allow you to adjust accordingly.  Initially, list down your expenses, such as daily visits at the local café or weekly workouts at the gym.  With this list, you can decide which ones to cancel or cut down.

There are many other ways that can help you cut down your spending, such as nanny sharing, using cloth diapers instead of disposables, buying cheap gas, and so on.

Of course, each individual and situation is unique, so specific ways of saving and shaving off fat may differ from one person to the other.  For instance, some of the tips above may not be applicable for your own situation.

Still, there’s no doubt that, like many other people, you want a stable, debt-free life.   You may want to eventually invest in property or business, have a relaxing retirement, or be able to go on vacations.

Regardless of what your goal is, the important thing is start spending wisely and begin saving now.

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ratetake

Martin - Head of Real Estate and Finance at RateTake
Martin is Head of Real Estate and Finance division at RateTake. He creates content that helps people understand and make the right decisions for their financial future.
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ratetake

Martin is Head of Real Estate and Finance division at RateTake. He creates content that helps people understand and make the right decisions for their financial future.