The only thing more difficult than making money is saving it. It can seem like you’ve done everything possible to lower your monthly bills, from finding discounted dental plans, to outsourcing your company’s services to lower operational costs, to finding the best and affordable web hosting services. You might even have worked closely with a realtor to find a dream home that would be affordable. But after all this, as conscientious as you may be, the costs of bills, groceries, and other necessities quickly add up. The money you are spending more than doubles if you need to provide for a family. Here are four easy ways to make sure you pay for familial expenses while storing a few pretty pennies away for a rainy day.
- Fun Can Be FREE
Money and fun can often be misconstrued as being synonymous. Whatever the event may be, whether it is a children’s birthday party or a casual meet-up with a friend, people tend to forget any activities or entertainment that do not involve putting down a few dollars. However, there are plenty of free ways to have a fantastic time!
Instead of bringing your child’s friends to the movies for her or his birthday, bring all the kids over for some cheap and tasty cupcake decorating. Instead of going out to eat with your friends, make lunch at home or organize a potluck dinner.
If your family is at a loss for something to do that does not break the bank, take a walk through the park or ride bikes around the neighborhood. If you can seek out and stick to the abundant free fun opportunities that are all around, but which are often drowned out by all the flash of the more expensive entertainment, you will be sure to save your family a lot of money.
- Get Specific About Your Groceries
The food that you buy consistently takes a portion of the money that you wish you could save. Unlike entertainment, it is not realistic to say, “go find free food”. However, there are many ways to become far more economically conscious of exactly what you are spending on groceries per week.
Before going to the grocery store, determine exactly what you want. What are the foods that you need to have in the house? Something very helpful in determining what you need to buy is planning your meals for the week. By doing this, you make sure that you are planning to buy only what you need.
After creating your list, do your research. Is there a cheaper, store brand version of your favorite honey mustard dressing? Are there special deals or coupons out now that may take a few dollars off of your purchase?
While the money saved on an individual grocery trip may not seem like all that much, if you add together all your savings after buying a few months’ worth of groceries, you may be able to splurge on a night at the movies!
- Online Shopping Is Stop One
If there is something you need, the natural impulse is to head to the store to go get it. Something that may end up saving you a lot of money in the long run is learning to rewire this impulse. Before grabbing your keys and jumping in the car, you should head to your computer.
When you go to the store, you are offered only the price options of that store. If you search for the needed product on the internet, you have access to hundreds of the same product being offered around the world. Whether it’s a cleaning service for your home or finding the most affordable STD testing clinic, there are any number of products and services to find online that are much more affordable than simply going to your local provider.
It is always worth those extra five minutes to jump online and make sure the store is really offering you the best price. If the products on the internet are more expensive, it has not cost you any money to look! Also, if the product is less expensive online, you have also saved money on gas by not going to the store.
- Trap Loose Change
Coins are a very strange currency in that they are incredibly small in both value and size. Their small value gives them the sense that they do not count, and their small size makes them easy to lose. If you were to get fifty cents back every day when you parked your car for work and saved the quarter, you would have amassed almost fifteen dollars by the end of the end of the month.
By making a loose change jar and putting in any extra change from the grocery store or other purchases, you will save more money than you know you have. The coins are far more powerful than they seem. Together they may help to be that extra boost you need to go on a trip, splurge on that luxurious new Nectar mattress you’ve had your eye on, or help you out at Christmas time.