ways to save

One of the sessions in our Finance Seminar on Sunday offered various ways to look around your life to save money.  Here are some of the ideas:

  • Withhold your taxes correctly. If you get a $2400 tax return, that’s $200 a month that you could have put to work for you, paid down debt with, etc.  The government demands we pay taxes, but we have no reasons to let them hold our money for us.
  • Use Tax advantage of Health Savings Accounts (HSAs) and similar accounts with your employers.
  • Adjust your insurance premiums by raising your deductible. You risk having to pay more if you use your insurance, but you can use the monthly savings to fund your emergency fund, or pay down debt.
  • Drop your house phone if everyone in your house has a cell phone
  • Cut your cable/direct TV.  Using Redbox, netflix, and hulu could save you some cash.
  • Evaluate your Electricity Costs: get on a budget plan with your provider; practice basic conservation such as turning off the lights, computer, etc; turn your water heater down to 130 and get a insulating blanket for it from the hardware store
  • if you leave for more than a couple days, turn off your breaker
  • Food: buy anything generic you can live with; buy in bulk, but don’t consume more because of it and don’t waste it
  • Fuel: keep your car up to date with basic maintenance (filters, oil change, air in tire, etc); accelerate slower
  • Credit Cards: if you can’t pay them off monthly, don’t use them.

Here are some others that I’ve come across:

  • use your bath towel more than once. You are clean when you get out of the shower, you don’t have to discard it after each bath
  • use dish towels not paper towels
  • Take your lunch to work instead of buying
  • Make extra food at dinner and take the leftovers in your lunch the following day.
  • prewash dishes and run the dishwasher on the lightest setting
  • use a mop and/or scrub brush instead of a swiffer
  • cook at home instead of eating out
  • use the library instead of blockbuster. You can get a lot of free stuff at the library
  • plug your electronics into a power strip and turn them off at night and when you are gone.
  • turn off your computer when it isn’t being used.
  • learn to live with it colder inside in the winter – wear a sweatshirt and use a blanket, its cheaper.
  • learn to live with it warmer inside in the summer – wear less clothes and drink more water
  • turn off ceiling fans when you are not in the room – they make you cooler, but not the room

I hope these are helpful!

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