Who couldn’t use a few extra dollars these days? Saving money on the basics can go a long way over time. Consider these ideas to make your earnings stretch a little bit further. With those savings, you can do more of the things you want to do.
Save Money on Gas
We all have to put gas in our cars, some more than others. But technology has some great tools to help us get the best price. Use the GasBuddy app to find the cheapest gas station in your area. Just type in your zip code and the app will show the best prices instantly.
Try to drive more smoothly, accelerating gradually instead of jack-rabbit starts. Keep your tires at the proper inflation level. Occasionally throw in a fuel system cleaner like Sea Foam Motor Treatment or Lucas Fuel Injector Cleaner.
These things will help to improve your gas mileage as well, which is money back in your pocket.
Save Money on Name Brands
Don’t be afraid to buy generic and store brands for what you eat. Name brands are the things we all recognize, household names like Tide, Coca-Cola, Kraft, Nabisco, Keebler, Libby’s, etc.
These name brands appeal to us. And we buy them because they are familiar. Sometimes we get them to impress our friends and neighbors. But the truth is that generic items are often the exact same thing. The difference is sometimes just the label and a smaller price tag.
Some things we may be brand loyal on (for me, it’s Dawn dish soap). But opting for more generic and store brand items can save a lot of money in the long run!
Save on Cable, Phone, and Internet
Cable TV has long been a staple item in most American households. And the landline phone has been around even longer. Nowadays, most Americans also have high-speed internet access, and that number is increasing almost daily.
But the cost of these services adds up. One estimate places the average phone, internet, and cable bill in America at about $120 a month. And many pay much more than that! Consider dropping one of these services to save money.
For example, if you have two cell phones for both husband and wife, the landline may not be worth it. For TV services, maybe it’s time to cut the cable if you’re not using it. In regions with multiple providers, don’t be afraid to shop around either.
Pit those companies against each other to win your business. Competition is good for consumers and only helps us get better quality services for a better price!
Save on Insurance
Our insurance policies are in place for one main purpose: to transfer risk. We pay a premium each month on our medical, homeowners/renters, car, and life insurance policies. If a very expensive incident happens, our insurance policies have only have to pay a small amount (your deductible). The the insurance company covers the rest.
Insurance coverage can be very expensive. This is especially true in medical care due to the bureaucratic American healthcare system. One way to save money on this is to reassess your coverages and see where you can raise deductibles. You may even want to consider canceling the policy.
If you have a whole life insurance policy you could save quite a bit of money by switching to term. (But be aware of potential surrender charges). On car insurance, consider raising your deductibles to $1,000. This will lower your monthly premiums. Or even consider getting a new provider. Zander Insurance shops around for you and finds the best rates for what you need.
Save by Using Coupons
You know those people… They hold onto every single coupon that comes through their mailbox and inbox. Then they wait until the things they want or need are on sale. Then they throw a coupon on top of it to save a ton on what they bought.
Sure, it takes some patience and due diligence. But over time this will put more money back in your pocket. You can then put this toward to your debt snowball or savings.
(It is best practice to buy things because we need them, not because they are on sale; some advice from a fortune cookie I’ll never forget).
Making active choices to save money takes effort. it is easy to just let certain things slide. But we have to prioritize what we really want. Fortunes can be (and are) nickel and dimed away. There is power in a values-based financial plan. Determine what you want and voluntarily make sacrifices to make it happen.
Let me know what you think about these ways to save money! Are there other tricks you’ve learned over the years that have cut down your costs? Feel free to share them!