I have a reputation amongst my family and close friends as being a very "frugal" person. They call me cheap, but they don't know very much. LMAO jkjkjkjk But I thought I would share some of my money saving tips with everyone. Some are pretty common, but I added them nonetheless. Enjoy!
1. Budget For me, I add up all of my bills and subtract the total from my monthly income. Starting with income, I take a certain amount from each check and have it deposited into my savings account. The longer it sits, the more interest it earns. Then I have a certain amount taken out for 401k. These are also ways to save....but for the future! After those two are subtracted, I use the new total as my income amount.
Bills. I add the cost of gas and I budget for groceries to be deducted as "bills". Add everything that you buy frequently. So here's a sample list.
car note, etc.
As a rule of thumb, try to have enough money in your account to cover at least 3 full months of expenses in case of hard times. If you subtract your expenses and you are in the negative or close to 0, you may be living above your means. Get it together please.
2. Coupons and Apps This one is pretty common. But did you know that your favorite store may offer special coupons and savings through mobile apps? I frequent Kroger and their app is awesome! You can download coupons right onto your Plus card and just swipe it during checkout to apply the savings. Also, make sure your address is current on your Kroger plus and other rewards cards. I get coupons in the mail all the time for free merchandise. Good stuff too. Like Free gallons of Tropicana orange juice, free Ben and Jerry's, free eggs,etc. Yeah, I know! LOL
3. Receipts Read those receipts! Not only to ensure that you didn't get got, but also to see if you can take a survey for free food/merchandise. Look at the back of your receipts as well. There could be coupons for other stores. For example, Buffalo Wild Wings offers 6 free wings after taking a short survey. Burger Kings offers a free Whopper or Chicken Sandwich with the purchase of small fries and a drink for taking their survey. These savings can come in handy when on the go as a lot of us are.
4. Scissors OK, this one is kinda sad and I wouldn't let anyone see me do this that I wasn't REAL cool with, lol, but when you get to the last bit of toothpaste, cut the tube open and dig the rest of it out. Use this method with any tubed products. Also, set lotion bottles upside down to make sure you get all of it out. You may not be "frugal" enough to do this step, but whatever, do you boo boo. lmao
5. Use Less! Instead of wrapping a whole roll of tissue around your hand, just pull off what you need. Be conscious of how much you use! Pull off one paper towel at a time. You can always go back to get another one. Don't fill up your cereal bowl with milk, just add enough to cover the cereal. Start being conscious of how much of a product you are using, versus what you really need.
6. Groupon This is like one of my favorite apps on my phone. Not only does it save you money, it gives you a chance to try out new places that you may not know about otherwise. A lot of small business owners use Groupon to get their business' name out there. They offer food, spa, fitness, and any other kind of service you can think of. Deals change daily so check them out!
7. Freeze It! Often times when I make a special recipe, I use ingredients that I don't cook with often. I've learned to chop up those ingredients and freeze them for future use. I cook with onions and bell peppers a lot so whenever I buy them, I automatically chop them up and put them in a freezer bag and freeze them. It not only cuts down on prep time, but it also keep me from throwing out so much food. I also like to look for new and different recipes using those "occasional" ingredients to expand my recipe repertoire, and ensure that those items will be used. Some people also freeze milk and other items that perish quickly. I've never tried it, but I'm sure it works fine. Examples of some of my usual occasional ingredients are green onions, basil, mint, and other fresh herbs to name a few. Some people buy powered herbs, but fresh is sooooo much better! Try it!
This is a short list, and I will add to it as things come to my head. What are some money saving tips that you use?