Think budgets, and you might automatically think cutbacks. But did you know there are ways to regularly spend less without feeling the pain of making cuts? Here are 4 easy ways to save money this month.
1. Watch when you do things.
Did you know that many utility companies offer time-of-use or dynamic pricing options? That means that you could pay less for things during one time period vs. another. Prices are typically lower during hours that are designated as “off peak” — like night time, early mornings, weekends, and holidays. Prices are higher during peak hours. So by joining a program like this, you can pay less for the energy it costs to run your washer & dryer, dishwasher, AC or heater, etc. if you’re willing to use them most during off peak hours. Contact your local utility company for information on what may be offered in your area.
2. Get to know your friends, coworkers, and neighbors.
Yes, making friends can save you money — especially if they’re they type of friends who are willing to share. You know those projects that you need a special tool for? One of your friends might have it and be willing to lend it to you — saving you the cost of buying or renting it. (Of course, you should be willing to lend things yourself in return.) The same goes for trading special skills or even babysitting.
3. Embrace “reduce, reuse, recycle”.
“Reduce, reuse, and recycle” is more than just a slogan. It’s also a great way to save money. Let’s start with reduce: Many of the products that you use every day come with scoops or list suggested amounts on their labels. But chances are you don’t actually have to use as much as is suggested. Experiment to find the amount you really need to get the job done. (For example, I put in about 1/3 the suggested amount of dishwasher detergent, and when I use dryer sheets I rip them in half.) You’ll save money by needing to buy those products less often. You can also reuse or re-purpose some types of things to avoid buying additional household items (check Pinterest for tons of ideas) and you can literally recycle things to turn them into cash.
4. Ease up on the gas pedal.
Simply being a little slower off the starting block when you drive can save you money on gas. (It’s not a race, after all.) This is especially noticeable if you drive a large or heavy vehicle, since it takes a lot of gas when you accelerate quickly. Likewise, remember that you can take your foot off the gas before you need to brake if you’re coming up to a red light or stop sign. Once again, this will reduce the amount of gas you use. Filling up less often = a good thing for you wallet.
What other ways can you think of to save money? Do you have any tips to share with other readers? Leave them in the comments :)