Are you living paycheck to paycheck and want to break the cycle? Are you making a good income but just can’t seem to save any money? If you want to learn how to save money you’ve come to the right place. Some people think that saving money is easy to do. For some, it is. But for many others, saving money is very hard.
But fear not. In this post I am going to show you how anyone, regardless of your financial situation can start saving money quickly.
Why Is Saving Money Hard?
Saving money is hard for most us for a few reasons. Here is the short list of reasons which I will go into more detail about.
- You are living paycheck to paycheck so you are only focused on surviving
- You give in to advertisers tricky campaigns to get you to spend your money
- You try to keep up with and impress others
- You have a hard time looking long term
Living Paycheck To Paycheck Focused On Surviving
When you are on a tight budget, you do what humans do best, which is you focus on how to survive. It’s what humans have always done. When you focus on surviving financially, you only think about and care about what is happening today. You’re only concern is how to pay those bills that are sitting on your desk right now.
The question is how do you live paycheck to paycheck but still set something aside so that you can break this cycle and eventually save more money?
The easiest solution to save money on a tight budget is to make your savings so small, you never even notice that you are saving money.
You can do this with the free app Qapital. It works by rounding up your purchases to the next whole dollar and then transferring that amount from your checking account to a savings account.
For example, if you buy groceries and the total is $41.15, Qapital will round this up to $42 and transfer $0.85 to a savings account for you.
I know you are probably thinking that rounding up loose change will never add up to anything. But you are wrong. I’ve been using the app for a little over a year and have saved over $750. And all it took was 5 minutes to download the app and link my accounts.
Granted this amount isn’t millions of dollars, but if you are struggling financially, you can’t save a million dollars. You have to start small and build up from there.
Just think about your life with $1,000 in savings. When an issue comes up, you will have some money set aside to pay for it. No more going into credit card debt.
And as you find additional ways to save money, you will find yourself breaking the cycle of living paycheck to paycheck.
To get started using Qapital and get $5 just for using the app, click here.
You Fall Victim To Advertisers Tricky Campaigns
Advertisers are great at their job, which is to get you emotionally connected to an item so that you buy it. Unfortunately for you, this means you save less money or even nothing at all because you are buying things you really don’t need.
The question is, how do you still take advantage of sales but be smart with your spending so that you don’t fall victim to their clever advertising ways?
The best solution is to understand their tricks. The more you understand how advertisers work, the better off you will be.
Another simple solution to this problem is to wait. Waiting before you buy something works because the emotional side of our brain fires before the rational side. This is why you have buyer’s remorse a few days later. By then, the rational side of your brain caught up and you now realize you didn’t need or even want the item.
To use this money saving trick, when you see something you want, don’t buy it but wait. Think about why you want or need the item. Ask yourself how you will use it.
The more you can do this, the greater the chance you allow your rational side catch up and talk you out of buying something you will later regret.
You Try To Keep Up With And Impress Others
Thanks to social media, trying to keep up with others is easier than ever. You see an old friend posting amazing vacation pictures and want to take a vacation yourself. Or you see pictures of their updated kitchen and want to get a sledgehammer and start gutting your kitchen right now.
The question is how do you enjoy your time spent on social media and with friends without feeling the need to keep up appearances?
The best way to beat the urge to keep up is to remember to keep thing is perspective. People put their best sides on social media. They are trying to portray an image of happiness, success and wealth.
Most times they do this subconsciously, because that is what you do on social media. By keeping things in perspective, you know that the vacation wasn’t all perfect. They might have had a delayed flight or they might have sacrificed to save enough money to afford the trip. Or worse yet, they went into a mountain of debt to take the trip.
By keeping things in perspective, you limit the chances of giving in and trying to keep up with others.
You Have A Hard Time Looking Long Term
If you are alive and breathing, you have a hard time looking at the long term. It’s in our DNA. Just like with people living paycheck to paycheck above, who are focusing on the now to survive, so too do most people. Humans just have a hard time with looking long term.
The question is, how to you still enjoy life now but make it a point to save something for the future?
To combat this, you have to understand your values and goals. What is it that you want out of life? When you know the answer to this, you need to form a detailed picture in your mind of that goal. It helps too to write it down.
For example, let’s take retirement. As cool as it sounds to not have to work any longer, that vague idea gets lost in the day to day hassle of life. To overcome this, make retirement a detailed picture of what it means to you.
Maybe it means owning a house on a tropical island. If so, visualize this. Get specific. See the blue green water. Feel the sand between your toes and the warm breeze in your hair. The more specific you get, the higher the likelihood you will get excited to save for the long term.
How To Make Saving Money A Habit
So how do you turn saving money into a habit? The first step is to start small. You need to find a few simple ways to save a little bit of money to get you used to saving and put you in the mindset of saving money.
After a few weeks of this, you will begin to see your savings grow. At this point, you will be motivated to start saving more money. You can either continue with the couple of tricks to save money you are currently using and just save more money using them or you can find additional ways to save money. The choice is yours.
Eventually you will get to the point where you are happy with the amount of money you are saving. When you get here, all you have to do is put saving money on autopilot and let compound interest work its magic.
- Read now: Click here to learn how to save $100k
115 Simple Ways To Save Money. A Ton Of Money
Now we get to the good part. Ways for you to start saving money. I touched on some of these ideas above, but have expanded the list to 115 simple ways to save money.
The best part is that you can cherry pick the ones that will work for you and use them. And you can stack these too. This means you don’t have to just pick one from the list. You can pick 5 or 15 or more and really skyrocket your money saving plans.
I’ve broken these 115 ways to save money down into groups so you can easily find what you are looking for. I also included a table of contents as well for ease of searching.
In the list you will learn:
- How to save money fast
- How to save money on groceries
- How to save money on a wedding
- How to save money in college
- How to save money on food
- How to save money on a car
- How to save money on a house
- How to save money on gas
You can use these tips to save money each month, and even if you are on a tight budget.
So let’s get started with the 115 simple ways to save a ton of money!
You can click on any of the category names below to be taken to the related tips.
- General Savings Tips
- Eating Out
#1. Save First. When you get paid, make it a point to put something aside into a savings account. It doesn’t have to be a lot of money, just get in the habit of saving something every time you get paid.
When you save first, you are free to spend whatever is left over. By doing this, you don’t make the mistake that others do, which is trying to save what is left at the end of the month.
#2. Automate. As important as it is to save first, it’s not always ideal to remember to make a savings transfer when you get paid. The solution is to automate your savings. When you automate your savings, you ensure you save all the time and never forget.
#3. Create A Budget. A budget is huge if you want to save money each month. By following a budget, you see where your money is going and in some cases, this may shock you. But the benefit of knowing where you are spending is critical if you want to start saving money.
#4. Make Savings Goals. Saving money is a lot easier when you have a goal to aim for. But before you make your goal a huge number, step back and create milestones along the way. This ensures that you stay motivated to reach your savings goal over the long term.
For example, if your goal is to save $5,000 create milestones and try to hit $500 first. Saving this smaller amount is more manageable and will keep you engaged much more.
#5. Create Long Term Goals. A great trick to save money each month is to create long term goals. What is it you want to achieve financially? Do you want to retire by age 50? Maybe take a year off work to travel the world?
Whatever your dreams are, stop letting them be pie in the sky ideas and write them down and turn them into goals. When you do this, you will be less likely to spend money on things you don’t need.
Instead you will be faced with a question as whether or not buying the item is getting you closer to your goal or farther away.
#6. Understand Needs Versus Wants. Do you know the difference between a need and a want? Over the past few years, this line has blurred and many wants are now seen as needs.
This results in us spending more money and saving less. Take some time to sit down and look over your budget. Look at everything you spend money on and determine what is a need and what is a want. Then try to slowly eliminate the wants from your budget.
But don’t get rid of every want. You still need some wants to enjoy life. But if you find you are overspending on wants, it is time to find ways to cut them down.
#7. Review Your Habits. What are your habits? You probably never thought about this, but take some time and be mindful of what your habits are and how they cost you money.
For example, maybe you stay up late to watch a television show. This causes you to get less sleep and make poor money decisions. The solution could be to record the show and watch it at another time.
Or maybe you go to happy hour for drinks after work. Maybe you can cut this out a few times and save the money instead.
By reviewing your habits, you can find areas where you spend and opportunities to save money that you otherwise never realized.
#8. Understand Your Values. Earlier I talked about looking over your budget and finding needs versus wants. You should also take some time and figure out what your values are.
What things in life add value to your life and make you happy? You will find that many of the things you spend money on add zero value to your life. In other words, they may give you a temporary high in feeling good, but long term, they do not add any value.
Once you figure out what you value, then you can spend your money on things that matter to you and stop spending it on things that don’t matter.
#9. Follow A 365 Day Challenge. This is a savings challenge that has you save a set amount of money every day of the year. Most people taking part in this challenge try to save $1 per day. At the end of the year, you grew your savings by $365.
The great thing though is that you can choose how much you want to save. If your budget is tight and $1 per day is what you can save, then save that amount. But if you can save more, then do that.
Just remember to automate this so you never forget to save!
#10. Follow A 52 Week Challenge. This is the same concept as the 365 challenge above but with a twist. Instead of saving $1 per day, you save $1 during the first week, then $2 the second week and $3 the third week.
Eventually you get to saving $52 for the last week of the year. This gets you to $1,300 saved during the year.
This challenge starts out easy but gets hard as the year progresses so you have to pick the right amount to start with.
You can read more about this challenge here as I hold a community 52 week challenge.
#11. Save Windfalls. What do you do with money you weren’t expecting? Most people do nothing with it other than deposit it into their checking account. Then they end up spending the money.
Instead, make it a point to save the money. Put it into a savings account and forget about it. You won’t miss it and having it in savings will earn you more interest.
#12. Save Tax Refunds. Getting a tax refund is great because it is money you weren’t expecting. And if you are smart with how you use your tax refund, it can launch your finances into better shape quickly and easily.
Unfortunately most people waste their tax refund by spending it on things instead of saving it. I’m not here to tell you to save your entire tax refund, but instead of just spending the whole thing, set up a plan.
For me, I divide my refund into groups. The first 10% I spend however I want. The other 90% I save. Doing this allows me to get the enjoyment of buying something with the money and at the same time, save a lot and improving my finances.
When I was in debt, I put 10% towards anything I wanted. I then took 70% of what remained and put that towards my debt. Whatever amount was left I saved.
It is up to you to determine how much you save or put towards debt, but the key is to make it a substantial amount. The average tax refund is close to $3,000. If you save 70% of this, which is $2,100 each year for 5 years, you have a savings account of more than $10,000! And this isn’t taking into account interest or growth of your investments.
Saving your tax refund is a simple thing to do and has a major impact on your finances down the road.
#13. Save Loose Change. If you still pay with cash, what do you do with the loose change you get? Keep it in your cars cup holder? Toss it in a jar?
When I spend cash, which isn’t often, I put my loose change in a jar. Then at the end of the year, I take the loose change and save it. It usually works out to be a few hundred dollars.
In the past, I would take it to my bank that had a free coin counting machine. But they got rid of it and everywhere I go, banks or stores want a fee for counting my loose change.
Instead of paying a fee, I bought some coin sleeves and roll up the change myself and take it to my bank and deposit it into my savings account.
#14. Save Your Raises. This is the same concept as saving windfalls and your tax refund. If you get a raise at work, be sure to save some portion of it. Seeing as you were surviving on your old salary, you should be able to save a portion of your new, higher salary.
The easiest way to do this is to increase your 401k contribution. When I would get a raise, I would email my human resources department for the form and increase my contribution by 1%.
It’s a simple thing to do that took me less than 5 minutes. But it helped me to quickly grow my 401k balance into one much higher than average.
#15. Find A Mentor. Successful people find others who have achieved what they want out of life and use them as a mentor to learn from.
Your task is to figure out what it is you want out of life and then find some people who have reached that goal. Then seek them out and see if they will mentor you. Don’t be shy about it.
Most successful people are willing to mentor others who show drive and determination for reaching their goals.
#16. Find Like Minded People. Find others who are trying to save to keep your motivation high. By being part of a community, you can lean on others when you don’t feel like saving any money.
You can check out my Saving Challenge for one such community.
#17. Get Some Sleep. Sleep is huge in saving money. The more tired you are, the more likely you are to give into your urges. This could mean eating out for lunch or not thinking through a purchase.
Plus getting sleep is great for your long term health. Aim for 7-8 hours each night. If this is hard at first, here are some great tips to help you get more sleep.
#18. Exercise. In addition to eating well, you also need to exercise. And you don’t have to join a gym to get a good workout. You can walk and do body weight exercises.
By making an effort to exercise, you will make yourself healthier over the long term, which can save you a ton of money on health related expenses down the road. And you will tend to not put on weight, which is another way bad health ends up costing you.
19. Read More. Reading books expands your mind and help you grow as a person. As you learn and grow, you will start making smarter decisions in life and with your money. Pick some topics that you find interesting and find some books you would like to read based on those topics.
Eventually, as you read more and more, you will watch less TV. This will make it easy to cancel cable and save the most money long term. In the short term, you’ll save on energy costs by have the TV turned off.
If you are interested in personal finance or success, check out my recommended resources section for my favorite books.
#20. Stay In. Do you tend to go out a lot with friends on the weekends? Dinner and drinks can really add up. Of course, I am not suggesting you become a hermit and never leave your house, but pick a couple times to stay in instead.
Here is how my friends and I make this work. We rotate between each of our houses. The host makes dinner, usually something simple and cheap, then we play board games or watch movies.
It is always a great night and we never miss out by not going out. In fact, we began to quickly enjoy staying in more than going out!
#21. Cancel Emails. You probably get a mountain of emails from various companies all trying to sell you something. Many times, these emails work too. You will be enjoying your day and then get an email that says 40% off. You click through and suddenly you have a cart full of things you didn’t know you needed.
The solution? Unsubscribe from the mailing lists. You can keep the emails from the companies you shop with regularly so you can take advantage of sales when you do need something, but for all the others, unsubscribe.
Many times, you can find a coupon code online that will be just as good as the sales in the emails, so you won’t ever be missing out.
#22. Save On Subscriptions and Memberships. How many memberships and subscriptions do you have that waste money? If you are like many, the answer is a lot.
To save money, you need to cancel them. But how do you do this? Use a free service called Trim. They will scan through your expenses and highlight ones that they think you can cancel.
They will also highlight others that they think you can get discounts on to save money.
They even will negotiate your cable bill for you to help you save money there too!
Click through to see how Trim can start helping you save more money.
#23. Stay Off Social Media. It used to be that social media was a great way to stay in touch with old friends and relatives. Now it is a marketing machine. Advertisers are clever in advertising on these platforms and entice you to spend.
Just as bad, most people only post the positives in their lives and this gives us a false sense of reality. As a result, we want the same great things they appear to have and go into debt to get them.
Be smart with social media. Understand how it works and how it steals your money without you realizing it. The less time you can spend on social media, the more money you will save.
#24. Use Flexible Spending Account. If your employer offers you a flexible spending account, you need to take advantage of it. When you do, you save money on taxes.
Here is how it works. You determine an amount you want to put into your account for a year and your employer will deduct a portion of that amount from each paycheck. Then when you have a medical bill, you use the money in this account to pay it.
The only catch is that you have to use the money in the account by the end of the year or you lose it. To avoid this, make sure you are conservative in your estimate of how much you spend on medical care in a year.
#25. Use Health Savings Account. This option is even better than the flexible spending account. You can save money in an HSA if you are covered by a high deductible health plan at work.
This plan works much the same as a flexible spending account. The difference is that you don’t have to use the money in the account by the end of the year. In fact, you can keep the money for as long as you want. You can even invest the money in the stock market.
This is what I am doing and basically makes my HSA account a Roth IRA.
#26. Know Your Perks At Work. Do you know all of the benefits you get at work? Sure you probably know about health insurance and paid time off, but chances are your company offers other discounts too.
I was clueless to these additional discounts until I read through an email our human resources department sent out. I was blown away at the various benefits.
The very next thing you should do is email your human resources department and ask if there are any discounts you can get through work as an employee.
#27. Use Online Banks. Online banks provide higher interest rates on savings accounts than your typical brick and mortar bank. And the difference adds up. So if you aren’t using an online savings account, you need to find one immediately.
My favorite is CIT Bank, they have one of the highest yield online savings account in the country.
#28. Open Bank Accounts. Another way to save some money is to open up bank accounts. Many times banks offer cash bonuses on new accounts. And all you have to do to earn the account bonuses is to open the account with a certain of money. In some cases, you might need to complete a direct deposit too.
In some cases, you can earn much more but you will have to deposit a larger amount. You can see a complete list of current offers here.
#29. Open Credit Cards. Just like opening up bank accounts for cash bonuses, you can also get bonuses for opening credit cards. In most cases, you have to spend a certain amount each month for a few months to score the bonus.
#30. Have An Accountability Partner. If you can’t find a community of like-minded people, then reach out to a close friend or family member. Tell them your saving goal and keep them up to date on your progress.
They will instinctively ask about your progress from time to time, helping you to stay on track.
#31. Find Free Entertainment. Looking for something to do? Instead of doing the same routine and paying for things, see if you can find free things to do instead.
On almost any weekend you should be able to find free things to do in your community or close by.
For example, in the summer you should be able to find free movies or music in your local park. Community days and car shows are also great things to do for free as well.
To find free things to do in your area, be sure to look through your local newspaper or follow your community online.
#32. Take Advantage Of The Library. Your local library is an amazing place. Instead of spending money on buying a book you will read once, you can borrow it from the library. Same holds true for movies too. You can borrow them from your library and save.
The best part is that more libraries are now partnering with Amazon. This means you have a large collection of digital books that you can download and borrow on your device for free.
While you won’t have access to it forever, it is another way using your library saves you money.
#33. Use Community Sites To Save. Instead of buying everything you need, you might be able to get it for free. Many sites like Craigslist and Freecycle have people post things they no longer need and offer them for free.
You will have to check out the condition of the item and make sure it meets your needs, but this is a simple way to save money.
#34. Take Advantage Of The Sharing Economy. Related to the point above is to take advantage of the sharing economy. There are many community sites that have members share tools with each other. So instead of spending $50 on a tool you might only use once, you can borrow it for free.
But it doesn’t stop there. You can go in with your neighbors to save too. At out last house we shopped at warehouse clubs, bought fruit in bulk and split the cost and the fruit with our neighbors.
We even shared trash collection too. There are a lot of ways you can save money by splitting costs with your neighbors. You just have to think outside the box.
#35. Understand How Much Your Time Is Worth. Do you equate time and money? Most of us don’t. But once you do, you will be able to save more money. How does this work? Look at how long things take you to complete and how much it costs for you to hire someone to do the job for you. Then look at what you could do instead.
For example, it takes me 2 hours to mow my lawn. If I hired a landscaper it would cost me $75. Is my time worth that $75? What would I do instead? I could use that time to spend with my family. Or I could use it to enjoy one of my many hobbies.
Only you can answer the question if it is worth it or not to pay someone to do a job for you. But don’t just assume that it is less expensive to do everything yourself. In many cases, you get more value and satisfaction out of life by doing the things you enjoy and paying someone else to the other things.
#36. Invest In Your 401k. This is by far the easiest way to start saving money for retirement. But it also helps you save money by reducing your tax burden. This means you can keep more of the money you work so hard for.
So if you don’t invest in your 401k plan at work, make it a point to start as soon as possible.
#37. Auto Invest. As powerful as automating your savings is, so too is automating your investing. When you invest on a regular basis, you take advantage of the ups and downs of the market and don’t risk your emotions clouding your judgment.
Plus, the most important thing to growing your wealth through investing is how much you actually save. So if you don’t have an investment account, open one up today and start putting something away every month.
Don’t know where to start? Here are my 4 favorites:
- Betterment: you can start with as little as $10 and they will build a portfolio and handle everything for you. All you have to do is set up an automatic transfer. Click here to learn more.
- Wealthsimple: you can start here for as little as $10 too and like Betterment they will build a portfolio and handle managing your money for you. All you have to do is set up an automatic transfer. Click here to learn more.
- Acorns: this one is a little different. They will build you a portfolio and take care of everything for you as well, but instead of setting up an automatic transfer, they round up your purchases and invest that amount for you. You can also choose to set up a recurring transfer as well, but this isn’t required. Click here to learn more.
- M1 Finance: a hybrid of the Betterment/Wealthsimple option. M1 does everything for you, but with these service, you can customize your portfolio. Click here to learn more.
#38. Invest In Low Cost Investments. You can save a lot of money and make a ton more as a result by investing in low cost investments.
Try to keep it under 0.50% for all of your investments. This will typically mean you move over to a passive investing approach, which is a good thing.
The lower the fee you pay, the more of your money stays invested and is able to compound and grow.
If you don’t know how much you are paying in fees, use Personal Capital. It’s a free service that will show you how much money you are paying in fees as well as help you to get a detailed picture of your finances.
Just by using this app, my wife and I have skyrocketed our net worth. Click here to learn more.
#39. Invest Tax Efficiently. Sticking with the investment theme, make sure you are investing in the right types of investments in the right types of accounts. Doing this ensures you pay the least amount of taxes.
And this not only saves you money, but the more money you keep invested can grow and compound quicker.
#40. Pay Extra On Debt. When you are in debt, you are paying back the money you spent plus the interest on that debt. So if your interest rate on your debt is 17%, then you are paying $0.17 on every dollar of debt you have, every single month.
While that might not sound that bad, when you look at the total amount of debt you are in, that $0.17 adds up quickly.
Therefore, the more you can pay towards your debt, the more money you save. In fact, when you pay extra on debt, you are getting a 17% return on your money. And you can’t get this kind of return anywhere else.
So make it a point to pay as much as you can towards your debt every month. I’ve written a post giving you some ideas for ways to make some extra money to put towards your debt, if you want to get out of debt as fast as possible.
#41. Pay Off Debt. Related to the point above, you need to get out of debt and then stay out of debt for good. When you are out of debt, you can save the money that was going towards your debt and really grow your wealth.
So what is the best way to get out of debt? First you need to make sure you know what got you into debt in the first place.
From there, you need a plan. The best plan for most people is the debt snowball method.
Then you can start the repayment process. And while you are at it, be sure to look into Qoins. It’s a free app that rounds up your purchases and then puts the savings towards your debt. They do take a small fee for doing this, but it is a simple way to help you pay off your debt. You can learn more about Qoins here.
#42. Pay Your Bills On Time. Yes you can save money by paying your bills on time. How is this possible? In some cases, utility companies offer a discount when you pay before your due date. This is also true many times for property taxes.
But there is an even bigger reason for making sure you pay your bills on time. It’s your credit score. The more you pay on time, the higher your credit score.
This is important when you go to take out a loan on a house as you will get a lower interest rate, thus saving you money.
Insurance companies also look at your credit score when determining your annual premium. With a higher credit score, your premium will be lower.
If you don’t know what yours it, find out what your credit score is for free with CreditWise.
#43. Negotiate Credit Card Interest. If you have credit card debt, an easy way to save money is to call your credit card issuer up and ask for a lower interest rate. By doing this, you will save on interest as you work to pay off your debt.
There is only one catch here. When you ask, make sure the lower interest rate is applied to your current balance and not only to new balances.
#44. Refinance Your Student Loans. Another big budget item is student loan debt repayment. If your monthly student loan bill is taking out a big chunk of your income, you might want to look into refinancing it.
You can easily do this with Credible. They offer a free service that lets you compare your interest rate and monthly payment against other lenders. There is zero obligation to go through with a refinance and it’s completely free to check out.
I encourage you to look into this. You can easily free up cash in your monthly budget by refinancing your student loans.
#45. Use Your Credit Card As A Debit Card. Getting into credit card debt costs you a lot of money in interest. But what if you like to earn rewards for using your credit card? And you want to avoid debt?
The solution is a free service called Debitize. Using this service will essentially turn your credit card into a debit card.
As you spend money on your credit card, Debitize will transfer that money from your checking account into a savings account. When it is time to pay your bill, Debitize will take the money from the savings account and pay your bill or you.
You can learn more about Debitize here.
#46. Use Cash Back Credit Cards. If you use credit cards, then you need to take advantage of cash back credit cards. As long as you pay your balance in full each month, you can easily earn money.
I use 3 credit cards that all offer cash back and over the course of a year, I easily average $1,000 in cash back. I take this money and put it into an investment account and let it grow for the long term.
#47. Use Credit Cards Strategically. I just told you I use 3 credit cards. But not all the time. I use them strategically. I use my Discover card during times it offers 5% cash back on certain purchases. This includes gas stations, warehouse clubs and on Amazon.
I use my American Express card on groceries and gas when I don’t get the bonus cash back from my Discover card.
Finally I use my Citibank card on everything else.
#48. Refinance Your Mortgage. For most people, your mortgage is your largest monthly expense. How can you reduce your payment and save money each month?
The easiest option is to refinance your mortgage. When you refinance to a lower interest rate, you end up paying less over the life of the loan.
And if you can swing it, try to shorten the term of your mortgage. Doing so will save you even more money overall. Though this could cause your monthly payment to increase.
If you want to see how much you could save by refinancing, check out the interactive chart below.
#49. Fake Refinance. Maybe you don’t qualify for a refinance. Or you can’t get a lower interest rate. No worries. Just do a fake refinance.
What is this? All you have to do is play with the numbers in the chart above and write down your “new” monthly payment. When you mortgage bill comes in the mail, start paying this amount. Just make sure the extra amount you are sending in goes towards principal.
While you won’t be saving money due to a lower interest rate, you will be saving money by paying extra each month.
Here are some additional tips to save money each month on your mortgage.
#50. Challenge Property Tax Assessment. Did you know you can challenge how much you pay in property taxes? I didn’t realize this until we bought our current house. Our realtor pointed out that our taxes were much higher than other houses in our neighborhood.
After doing some research, I not only found out how easy this is, but that many attorneys offer this service. In fact, the way they work it is incredible.
Here is how it works. You provide the attorney the paperwork they need and they take care of the rest. If they do not get you a reduction, you pay nothing. If they do get you a reduction, their fee is a percentage of the savings capped at a certain amount.
For us, our attorney fee was 25% of the first years savings capped at $500. In their initial letter to us, they said what they thought they could get the assessment and our property tax down to.
In the end, they reduced our property taxes by $1,200. We paid them the $300 and are saving the rest.
#51. Cancel Cable. How much television do you watch? Chances are you are paying for a lot of channels you never watch. You could try to negotiate for a lower cable package price, but that usually ends in headaches.
Another option is to have someone negotiate your bill on your behalf. This is where Trim comes in. They will actively work to get you a better price on your cable bill. Even if they can’t they will try again the following month.
They are very successful at getting a reduced price to. You can get started with Trim here.
The solution to save the most money though is to cancel cable completely. This doesn’t mean you can no longer watch television. There are a lot of lower priced streaming services out there that allow you to put your own channel package together. Here are a few popular ones:
- SlingTV: offers various packages depending on your likes and starts at just $20 a month.
- PureFlix: this is a package that offers family friendly shows and movies.
- Playstaion Vue: this one is really gaining steam and offers many packages for you to choose from.
#52. Declutter. Take a weekend and clean out your house. Go through room by room and get rid of things you no longer use or want. If the items are in good condition, you can try to sell them for extra money, or you could donate them.
If they are in poor condition, you can just throw them out.
How does this save you money? It helps you to see how much money you wasted on things you rarely use. It is a real eye-opener for many people.
#53. DIY When You Can. If something breaks is your solution to call someone for help or to just replace the item entirely? If so, you can save a good amount of money by learning to fix and repair things yourself.
And thanks to the internet, it is easy to learn how to fix things. Your first step is to do some research to see if the issue is a problem you can tackle and if it is even worth it.
If so, you can jump on YouTube and watch countless videos on how to make the repairs. I’ve replaced toilets, replaced attic access stairs, a screen door, and more just by watching some videos.
And fixing things myself gives me a huge boost of self confidence too. So before you shell out money to have someone else fix something, see if you can do it yourself and save a few dollars.
#54. Be Smart With Laundry. Don’t make the mistake thinking that once you wear an item it needs to be washed. You can easily wear some outfits a couple of times before washing them. Doing this not only saves you money on water and electricity, but also on the life of the article of clothing.
For example, when I had to wear business casual, I would wear an undershirt under my dress shirt. As a result, my dress shirts rarely got dirty. So, I only washed them after the second or third wear.
#55. Downsize. This one is a bit on the extreme side, but one way to save money is to downsize. Maybe you have a house that is bigger than what you really need. If so, sell it and move into a smaller home.
Not only will you lower your monthly mortgage payment, but all of your utilities will be less and your property taxes will be less. In all, you will save a ton of money.
#56. Get An Energy Audit. By far this is the best money we spent since we moved into our house. Our electric company offers energy audits where a licensed professional comes to your house and points out areas where you are wasting money.
For us, there were a few areas we could add insulation to keep the temperature in the house more stable. I made the updates myself and our electric bill is now lower.
Other benefits to this is they gave us a bunch of LED light bulbs for free and coupons for discounts on other energy saving appliances and devices. They even gave us another smart power strip!
#57. Buy A Programmable Thermostat. Another simple solution to save money each month on electricity costs is to buy a programmable thermostat. Pay attention to when you are home and away and then set it based on these times.
My favorite is this one from Honeywell. In fact, it is the same one I use.
If you want to save money on electricity but don’t want to manually program a thermostat, the best solution is a smart thermostat. These detect when you are home and adjusts your thermostat accordingly.
You can even control it manually with an app on your phone too so that your house is warm when you get home.
#58. Replace Lights With LEDs. The cost of buying an LED light bulb is more than an incandescent, but it not only uses less power, saving you money each month, but it also lasts a lot longer too.
When we moved into our house, I replaced the key bulbs that were on a lot. This meant the kitchen, master bedroom and master bathroom. The month after I did this, we saw a meaningful decrease in our electric bill.
I recommend LED lights and not CFLs because even though they say CFL lights last a long time, I’ve had many burn out after a few uses. Add in the higher purchase price and I lost money there.
So skip CFL bulbs and stick with LEDs.
#59. Buy A Smart Power Strip. When I bought my first house, money was tight. So I was doing everything I could think of to lower my bills. One solution I stumbled upon was to turn off my power strip when I left for work.
Even though the television, cable box and receiver were turned off, they were still drawing phantom power.
Thanks to technology, you don’t have to manually do what I had to do. They now have smart power strips. You simply plug everything into the power strip and one device into a special port. When that device is turned off, the power strip cuts off power to all the other devices.
It even has a port for a device that you want to always be on. For example, you want your DVR to stay on in case you are recording an upcoming show.
#60. Raise Your Air Conditioner Temperature. In addition to controlling when your HVAC unit runs, you can also control the temperature to save money. In the summer, raise the temperature for the air conditioner.
I keep ours at 75. It feels great coming inside from the hot air and as a result of keeping it warmer inside, our unit isn’t always running, costing us money.
#61. Use Ceiling Fans. When you raise your air conditioner temperature, turn on your ceiling fans. They will move the air, making it feel cooler than it really is. This helps you raise your air conditioner temperature even more.
And if you have a ceiling fan over your bed, keep it on a low setting. The cool air moving across your body at night will really keep you cool.
#62. Lower Heat. Same idea as above by reversed for the winter. Just lower your heat. I keep ours at 68. To some this sounds cold but only a few times during the day am I actually cold.
And when this does happen, I just grab a blanket or put on a sweatshirt. It’s a small price to pay for big time savings on my electric bill.
#63. Boil Water In Microwave. When you boil water on the stove top, do you know how much electric or gas you waste? You can save a lot of time and money by boiling water in the microwave instead.
#64. Complete A No Spend Challenge. A no spend challenge is where you challenge yourself to not spend in a given budget category for a set amount of time. This could be a week or a month or even 6 months.
To be successful, you should pick categories that you can go without spending money. In other words, eating out would be a good place to start. On the other hand, your rent is not since you have to pay your rent in order to have a place to live.
The key to doing a no spend challenge is to actually save the money. This means transferring it over to your savings account and not leaving it in your checking account to spend at a later date.
#65. Try The Pause Test. The pause test has you wait before you buy anything. You can pause for 5 minutes or 30 days. You just have to find the length of time that works for you.
Here is how this works. Advertisers get us to buy on emotion. A few days later when we think about the purchase we made, we frequently regret it. This is because the thinking part of our brains need more time to catch up.
By pausing, you give yourself a chance to think through a purchase and decrease the chances of buyer’s remorse.
This test is powerful and I encourage you to give it a try.
#66. Use The ‘Would You Rather’ Test. This is a variation on the pause test. Instead of pausing, you ask yourself if you would rather have the item you are thinking about buying or the cash. If you decide on the cash, then don’t buy the item.
As with the no spend challenge, if you skip on buying something, transfer that money over to your savings account. This will ensure you save the money.
#67. Use The ‘Right Now’ Test. This is yet another twist on the pause test. Here you ask yourself if you could, would you use the item right this moment.
This test works best for clothing. When you are thinking of buying something, ask yourself if you would wear it right now as you walk out of the store. If you answer no, then you should put the item back.
While this test doesn’t work 100% of the time, it has saved me from buying clothes many times. As I look at myself in the dressing room mirror, I know I wouldn’t wear the item out of the store, so I put it back.
#68. Remember The Affordability Rule. This rule is simple to understand but thanks to our urges, is tough to follow. It basically states that if you can afford to buy something, then you can afford to save that money instead.
So if you are looking at buying a new home theater system and can afford it, then you can afford to not buy it and move the money into your savings account instead.
This works by making you think differently. Too many times we don’t think we have enough money to save. But we do. We just find reasons to spend it.
#69. Try Clothing On. Before buying clothes, I now try everything on before I buy it and this saves money fast. I see how the shirt or pants look on me and if they don’t look right, I don’t buy the item.
By doing this, I avoid taking the clothing home, trying it on there, and then having to make time to run back to the store to return it. And many times, I end up trying it on a handful of times, hoping for a different result.
By the time I admit I don’t want it, it is too late.
#70. Use Cash. Cash is powerful. There is a psychological connection we have with money and when we see money leave our hands, we are less likely to spend it.
On the other hand, there is credit, which swiping a piece of plastic has zero emotional connection. This is why we easily overspend with credit cards.
The solution then is to use cash whenever possible. The more you use cash, the less stuff you will buy.
#71. Round Up Your Purchases. A simple way to save money is to use technology. There are two great options out there that round up your purchases.
The first is called Qapital. They will round up your purchases to the next dollar and transfer that amount into a savings account from your checking account.
It’s incredible to see how fast your money adds up when you do this. You can click here to get $5 just for trying Qapital out.
Another option is called Qoins. It works the same as Qapital, only the money you round up is then used to pay down your debt. It’s an ingenious idea to help you pay off your debt quicker.
You can learn more about Qoins here.
#72. Ask For A Discount. Before you buy anything, make it a point to ask for a discount. This could be a discount for paying in cash. Or it could be asking if the cashier has any coupons or discounts they can apply.
You will be amazed at how many times this works. On average I save about 5-10% every time I am successful.
Of course, I don’t always get a discount, but more times than not, I do get some discount on the items I am buying.
If you are nervous asking for a discount, just remember, the worst they can say is no.
#73. Don’t Go Cheap To Save Money. Don not buy the cheapest version of everything to save money. In the long run, it ends up costing you more money because the quality of the lower cost items are not as high, meaning it needs to be replaced much sooner.
I’m a perfect example here. When I bought my house, I bought the lowest priced bath mats I could find. After a couple of washes, they were falling apart. I ended up buying higher quality mats that lasted me much longer.
So make sure you buy quality items that are going to last. They may cost more upfront, but they will save you more money down the road.
#74. Shop Using Lists. If you don’t shop with a list, you are throwing money away. Using a list keeps you focused on what you need so you tend to get your shopping done faster. It also helps you from wandering down aisles and falling victim to clever advertising.
You can either write a list manually, save a list in the notes section on your phone or download a free shopping app.
So before you do any shopping, make sure you write down a list and follow it so you can save money.
#75. Shop Sales. If you aren’t shopping sales, you are a fool. You can easily get a good selection of food that is on sale every week. And after you shop sales for a few weeks, you will start seeing a pattern of how the sales work and rotate. This will make it even easier to save large amounts of money.
The other week, I brought home a mountain of groceries for $30. My wife couldn’t believe all that I bought. Most items were buy one, get one free. Some were buy one, get two free.
You should incorporate this tip with the one above about meal planning to really knock down your grocery bill.
And this doesn’t end at the grocery store. Shop after the holidays or the end of the season and you can score great deals on everything.
#76. Shop By Unit Price. When you are shopping, especially at the grocery store, don’t shop by price but by the unit price. This is the smaller number near the bottom of the price tag.
What is the unit price? It is the true price of the item taking into account the size. This makes it easy to compare two items that might be different sizes.
In general, the bigger the size, the lower the unit price. But in some cases, the larger the size, the more expensive the unit price is, making it a bad deal.
Understand that if you are buying a larger size, the price tag will be more, but it is cheaper to buy the larger version than the smaller version.
Of course, you also have to take into account how quickly you will use something up. For example, the gallon of milk will have a lower unit price than a quart of milk. But if you don’t drink milk that often, it might be smarter to pay the higher unit price and get the quart.
#77. Shop At The Dollar Store. You can save a ton of money by shopping at the dollar store. The things I buy most there are greeting cards as they tend to be 2 for $1.00 and party favors. This includes streamers, paper plates, cups, napkins and plastic utensils.
I also get some small toys and coloring books for our daughter at the dollar store as well. It’s a great way to save money on a lot of different things.
#78. Use Promo Codes. I love using promo codes to save money. My favorites are with Papa John’s. The day after our local sports teams win, we can use the special promo code and get 50% off a pizza.
I got so many pizzas for $6 its crazy.
But it doesn’t end there. I am always on the lookout for promo codes to help me save money. You can find promo codes on product packaging, on bottom of receipts and many other places.
Just keep your eyes open and you’ll be amazed at the various ways you can save.
#79. Pack Snacks. Just like with drinking water when running errands, you also should pack your own snacks. Doing so will help you save money by not buying fast food or other sugary snacks.
The best snacks to pack are nuts since they do well in both hot and cold temperatures and they keep you feeling full for a long period of time.
#80. Take Advantage Of Your Birthday. Many restaurants and stores now offer deals on your birthday. While you shouldn’t be shopping just because you can get a deal, if you are going out to eat for your birthday, then it only makes sense to go to a place that offers you a deal.
You can check out this complete list of places to save money on your birthday. In most cases you can sign up for free online.
#81. Don’t Buy Cheap Clothes. I know the idea of saving money can be taken too far. I am a perfect example of this. I was buying tee shirts for $3 apiece. I thought I was so smart in saving money.
But within a few months, they started to fall apart. So I bought more. A few months later, the same thing happened. I quickly learned that paying more for quality is a way to save money.
I stopped buying the cheap tee shirts and instead bought some for $12. They have lasted me for years.
In the short term, spending $12 instead of $3 sounds foolish. But I was spending $3 twice a year and $12 once every 5 years. In five years by purchasing quality tee shirts I saved myself $22.
#82. Think About Potential Gifts. The next time you need to buy a gift for someone, don’t run out and buy just anything. Stop and think about who they are and what they value. Then try to find items related to this.
I’ve found when I do this, I find gifts that are not as expensive as other gifts I had in mind. And since I put thought into the gift, it has a much greater meaning to the recipient.
#83. Change Cell Phone Providers. How much are you paying for you cell phone service? If you switch to a reseller, you can save a ton of money and get just as good of service.
I did this a few years ago. I used AT&T and now use Cricket. I get unlimited calls and texts and 4GB of data each month for $35. Compared to my old plan, I am saving $60 every month. That adds up quickly.
If you want to check out Cricket, use this link. You will get a $25 credit on your first statement. This means if you pick the same plan I have, your first monthly bill will only be $10!
Another option is Gen Mobile, which offers fantastic coverage for a low monthly cost. Here is a detailed Gen Mobile review to learn more.
#84. Try Home Remedies. Before you run out to buy costly medicine to nurse yourself back to health, why not try some home remedies? They can be more cost effective and they’ve worked for centuries.
Here is a great list of many home remedies to try.
#85. Sign Up For Rewards Programs. At most places where you shop, you can sign up for rewards programs to save money. The classic example of this is the grocery store. By using your club card, you get special discounts that non-members don’t get.
But it doesn’t stop with just grocery stores any longer. More and more stores now offer some form of loyalty program.
The bad part of this trick is signing up for these programs and then getting endless emails for sales to try to get you to spend money.
Here is my solution. I sign up for rewards programs at the stores I shop at most. For others, I simply ask for a discount.
#86. Leave Your Wallet At Home. A great way to save money is to not take your wallet with you every time you leave the house. Sure you should take your ID just in case, but you don’t need your entire wallet.
#87. Use Online Shopping Portals. There are a few shopping portals that you can go to that can save you a lot of money. A few popular ones are Groupon, Restaurants.com and Living Social.
You can get incredible deals on these sites all the time. You just have to make sure you don’t get sucked into the deals and spend money you weren’t planning on spending.
My favorite is Restaurants.com because I can get discounted gift certificates to my favorite restaurants for a fraction of the cost.
#88. Take Advantage Of Deal Sites. When you are shopping, either online or in store, you need to take advantage of discount codes, coupons and cash back.
When it comes to discount codes and coupons, I simply do a search for the name of the retailer and the word coupon. This will bring up a number of sites with various coupon codes listed.
In the event I don’t see a coupon, or even in addition to a coupon code, I make sure to shop through online cash back portals. These websites offer cash back on your purchases, usually in the range of 1% to 25%.
Over the years of using these two sites, I have earned well over $1,000 in cash back.
The bottom line is you need to take the 5 minutes to search for discount codes or cash back. Not doing so is spending more money than you should be.
#89. Shop With Amazon Prime. Amazon Prime makes buying online simple. And it can save you money too. If you order a lot of stuff from Amazon, the free shipping more than outweighs the annual fee.
But you also get other add-ons with Prime. My favorite is Prime Videos. This allows me to watch tons of movies and television shows at no cost.
And this link will get you a free trial of Prime.
#90. Meal Plan. How do you determine what is for dinner every night? Do you just wing it? If so, you probably waste a lot of food and a lot of money by ordering out too much.
Instead, start meal planning. Sit down on the weekend and figure out what meals you want to make for dinner. Then shop for these items and make your dinners. You can either make the dinners the night you plan to eat them or spend a Sunday afternoon making food for the week.
We’ve used the weekends to make dinner for the week and it makes night time much smoother. No more rushing around to get home to make dinner. No more feeling too tired to cook a meal. Just reheat and dinner is ready.
#91. Buy Generic. An easy way to save money is to buy generic or store brands. This is especially easy at the grocery store. For most foods, I end up buying the store brand. When I bought my house and money was really tight, I did this out of necessity.
I bought the store brand version of my favorite cereal and couldn’t tell the difference. I then expanded to other things like frozen vegetables, cheese and milk.
I no longer shop generic as a necessity, but as a tool for saving money.
#92. Buy In Bulk. Another trick to save money is to buy in bulk. I go to a warehouse club once a month and stock up on certain things that we use regularly. But I don’t just blindly buy.
This is because not everything is a good deal at the warehouse clubs. You have to shop smart. Compare the unit prices to make sure it is a deal. Then you have to assess whether or not it makes sense to buy in bulk.
For example, when I was single, I bought a tray of eggs. But it just wasn’t any tray. It turned out it was 3 levels of eggs, or 128 eggs. I had to give eggs away to my family members because I couldn’t eat that many eggs.
But now with a family, that many eggs makes sense as we go through them quickly.
The bottom line is buying in bulk makes sense for many items. You just have to make sure it makes sense for you.
#93. Eat Whole Foods. Another way to save money on food is to eat whole foods. This includes meats, dairy, vegetables and fruit. In other words, skip the inside aisles at the store and just stick to the outside aisles instead.
Not only will this save you money, but it will save your health too. When my wife and I tried a Paleo diet for a month, we lost over 20 pounds combined. And we had a lot more energy and slept better too.
You can learn more about the Paleo diet here.
#94. Plant A Garden. Eating healthy doesn’t have to cost a lot. You can save a ton of money by planting a garden. It doesn’t have to be a large garden either.
My wife and I picked out a few vegetables that we regularly buy and planted them. We only planted 2 tomato plants and ended up with a mountain of tomatoes.
The key is starting small and working up from there.
#95. Drink Water. One the biggest wastes of money is buying soda and other flavored drinks. The solution is to drink water instead. In most cases, you can get water for free when eating out.
If you are out for the day running errands, don’t buy bottled water. Take a reusable water bottle with you and drink from this.
There are two water bottles that I use all the time. This Camelbak water bottle is insulated and has a bite valve so water never spills. And this Contigo water bottle is also insulated and has an auto-seal feature so it too never spills.
Not only will drinking water save you money by not buying drinks, it will keep you feeling fuller so you will be less tempted to buy snacks. And it is much healthier which saves you money long term.
#96. Buy A Slow Cooker. A slow cooker is a small investment but saves you a lot of money. Just put some food in the slow cooker before you leave for work and when you come home you have a meal ready to eat!
Not only is it easy to make meals, but it costs a lot less money too!
If you are interested in trying out a slow cooker, this is the one we use.
And here is a great resource of slow cooker recipes to try.
#97. Get Creative With Desserts. If you love to eat dessert after dinner, see if you can make your own instead of going out to buy it. For example, if you love ice cream, buy some ice cream at the grocery store and make a bowl for yourself. You’ll get many more servings for much less doing it this way.
I do this with Oreo’s. I love to get an Oreo Blizzard from Dairy Queen. But it costs me $5. So I buy vanilla ice cream and a pack of Oreo’s that I blend in my mixer. For $6 I can make 10 Oreo shakes that would cost me over $30 if I bought the Blizzard at Dairy Queen.
#98. Eat Out Less. The cost of eating out is only increasing. The solution is to simply eat out less often. By eating out less, you save money. You also potentially save your health too. Have you seen how massive the portions are at some restaurants?
I remember when I traveled to Europe and was blown away at how small the portions were. Then I realized this is what an actual portion size should be for an adult male.
At first, I was starving after meals because I was used to eating a lot more. Fast forward to when I was back home, I went out to eat and was blown away at how big the portion sizes were. I couldn’t even finish it now because I got used to the correct portion sizes.
#99. Split Meals When Eating Out. In know that for some reading this, not eating out isn’t an option. So I have a few solutions for you to enjoy your meal out and still save money.
The first is to split a meal. As I just mentioned, the portion sizes are massive. You can easily split the meal in two and both people can enjoy it without overindulging.
But before you settle on this option, be sure to ask the restaurant if this is allowed. Many have started charging you to split the meal. Depending on the cost, you might still be better off splitting.
#100. Only Eat Out At Happy Hour. The other solution to save money when eating out is to go during happy hour. Most restaurants will offer discounts during this time. To save money, make sure you only order things that are on special.
#101. Drive Smarter. When you take off from a red light or slam on your brakes as you approach a red light, you are wasting gas. Instead, drive smarter and predict red lights. Coast
to a red light instead of locking your brakes up.
Furthermore, drive slower. If you are taking a short drive, going 75 versus 65 isn’t going to get you to your destination that much faster. In fact, I can’t tell you how many times I see someone race past me only for me to catch up to them down the road because of red lights.
When starting from sitting at a red light, slowly ease onto the gas. You’ll be amazed at how much better gas mileage you get.
#102. Empty Out Your Car. A big factor in getting good gas mileage is the weight of your car. While you cannot control how heavy the parts of your car are, you can control added weight.
If you are the type of person who stores things in your car, take a weekend and clean it out. The more weight you remove from your car, the better mileage you will get.
And here is another great reason. If you are ever in a serious accident, anything in your car that isn’t tied down is a potential projectile. While a piece of paper might not injure you, a book or a shoe lying in the backseat will hurt when it is racing towards you at 50 miles per hour.
#103. Inflate Your Tires. When you drive around with tires that are not inflated properly you get poor gas mileage and you shorten the life of your tires. This means you need to buy new tires sooner than you otherwise would need to.
So make it a point to check your tire pressure on a regular basis.
And don’t settle on letting your tire pressure monitor on your car to tell you when you need to add air. Many times the warning doesn’t come on until there is a variance of 10%.
This means if your car tires should be at 32psi, the warning will not come on until you are below 29psi. You are wasting money on poor gas mileage during this time.
Make it a point to check your tire pressure on a regular basis. The best time is when you are getting gas since it is frequent and it will hopefully become a habit.
#104. Don’t Warm Your Car Up. Contrary to popular belief, you don’t need to start your car up and let it sit for 15 minutes to warm up. Thirty seconds is all it needs to get the oil moving through the engine.
From there, just drive easily for a few minutes to allow it warm up more. Just having your car sit idling for 15 minutes wastes gas and decreases the life of the engine, which costs you a lot of money.
#105. Shop Insurance Coverage. When was the last time you shopped for insurance? If it has been more than a year, you need to get some free quotes.
If you don’t shop around, odds are your insurance carrier is raising your premiums and you are paying more than you should. Getting a free insurance quote will take you 15 minutes and you could save a couple hundred dollars in the process. Or you could you a car insurance comparison engine to compare quotes from the top companies in seconds.
A few years ago, I saved close to $400 a year simply by getting some free quotes and switching my coverage.
Just be certain you are comparing the same plans and features to get an accurate quote.
#106. Increase Your Deductible. Related to the above point, make sure you raise your deductible to the highest amount you can afford. By shifting more of the liability to you and away from your insurer will lower your premiums.
How much can you save? Anywhere from 5% to 30%. That is a huge savings!
So if your deductible is $250, try to raise it $500. Then after you save some money and build up your emergency fund, you can raise it again to $1,000 to save even more money.
#107. Get Multi-Policy Discounts. Another trick to save money on insurance it to bundle all of your polices with one company. For example, you would insure your home and car with the same company and save money as a result.
You can do a quick search here for free quotes to see just how much money you can save by combining all of your policies.
Bonus Tip: Look Long Term When Buying A Car. Too many people focus only on the monthly cost of a car and not the overall price.
This leads them to spending more money, possibly hurting their finances.
Instead, account for how much money you want to spend in total and go from there.
Another common mistake is buying a car thinking it will save you money.
For example, some people think buying a hybrid will save them money.
While it will lower your cost of gas, the total amount spent is more than if you just bought a gas powered car.
The bottom line is, take into account the full picture, not just a one or two points.
#108. Buy A Used Wedding Dress. Yes, I am suggesting you buy a used wedding dress. My wife did this and saved a lot of money. Her dress looked brand new, she looked incredible in it and it only cost $600. Compare that to close to $2,000 for a new version of the same dress.
No one will know it is used other than you, and you will be so focused on your wedding, you won’t even be thinking about it.
#109. Pay For What Matters. Staying on the wedding theme, only spend money on what matters and skip the rest. For my wife and me, we wanted good food and to have a party. So we spent money on the food and the music.
We did spend money on the venue, but just found the cheapest one that had the biggest dance floor. Five years later and people still tell us the amazing time they had. No one mentions or remembers that we didn’t have centerpieces on the table.
#110. Marry In The Off Season. Another tip to save money on weddings is to not get married during the peak season starting in May. If you can get married in the winter or on a day other than Saturday, you are going to save money.
#111. Make Your Reception A Pot Luck. If money is tight, then pay for a wedding but throw your own reception. If you know someone with some land or a large gathering room, you can have your reception there. And to save even more money, have your guests all bring a dish.
#112. Buy Used Text Books. The price of text books is insane. Save money by buying used versions. You can either do this at the school store or online. I’ve found online to be far less expensive.
Of course, when you are using a new edition, chances are you have to buy new.
#113. Rent Textbooks. Another solution for textbooks is to rent them instead of buying. This solution lets you save money regardless if it is a new edition or not. And in many cases, you can rent a digital version of the book, saving you from carrying a hulking book around.
#114. Move Off Campus. This tip could save money each month throughout your college years. When I did the math, it was more expensive to live on campus versus renting a house nearby and sharing it with a friend.
So we moved off campus, split the rent and utilities and saved ourselves a lot of money.
#115. Use Your College ID Card. If you are in college, here are a few great tips to save money. First, use your ID card. You will be amazed at how many places you get a discount just by showing your college ID card.
I’ve been able to save money at the movies, restaurants and even at sporting events and concerts by showing my ID.
How To Save Money – Your Action Steps
To recap everything we went over, if you want to learn how to save money, regardless of the financial situation you are in, you need to do the following.
- Understand the reasons why you have a hard time saving money. Once you understand the issue, you can begin to take steps to overcome it.
- Turn saving money into a habit. By making it a habit, you can save money no matter the financial situation you find yourself in.
- Start off small. As you make saving money a habit, remember to start small. Going too fast only winds up in defeat. Take your time and allow the habit to form naturally.
- Increase your savings. As saving money becomes a habit, review the tips to save money I outlined and add more ways so you can easily increase your savings.
Saving money isn’t something many of us think we need to learn how to do, but in fact we do need to learn how to save money. If you take the steps I’ve outlined above, you will set yourself on a path to creating wealth in your life.
And if you take a handful of the 115 tips to save money I outlined, you can really boost your savings and set yourself up financially for many years.
The key though is to take that first step and to get started today. The sooner you start, the sooner you can realize your financial dreams.
Below is a great infographic of all the tips I listed here. Feel free to download it and share it so others can start saving money too!