Saving Money Just Got Easier
Saving money is a goal that almost anyone can get behind. Even those who are well-off can be notoriously thrifty; after all, that’s probably how they became well-off!
For those of us without such a large bank account, the need to economize is even greater. Yet there seems to be no end to the things that we need, and that goes far beyond the necessities. How do we get all of the products and services that are truly beneficial without ending up in the poorhouse?
Most of us know all the usual tricks. We shop around for better cell phone plans, we carpool, we religiously monitor our thermostats for optimum usage. But even with all those measures in place, we may still find that we need to save more—or at least, that we want to save more.
It’s at this point that our creativity can really come into play. There are lots of thoughtful solutions for cutting the cost of everyday essentials without skimping on their quality, performance, or durability.
There is absolutely no reason to assume that you have to pay full price for anything. Clothing is a great example. Most seasonal wardrobe pieces are put on the retail floor well ahead of the time of year that they are needed, so you can contain your enthusiasm and shop for summer when it’s almost summer. You’ll find many of the year’s must-haves will be considerably cheaper.
But discounts don’t end with the traditional examples like clothing. Prescription discounts can save you a lot of money on the medication you use every day, all with no change in their effectiveness. You simply shop around a little bit and find the same product with a better deal.
This works with everything from groceries to auto parts. Check out customer loyalty clubs and similar arrangements. Many of them will let you build points towards a free item or a discount. Stick with the same store for those daily needs and build your bonuses.
There’s nothing wrong with entertainment or pampering ourselves as long as we do it economically. So many of us break our budgets by trying to have a little fun, turning what should be a reward for ourselves into a financial pinch or new debt.
People are getting more creative every day with how to have fun on a budget without sacrificing the quality of the experience. The staycation has become a popular choice. Rooted in a summer gas spike a few years ago, it has inspired many people to travel closer to home—and sometimes even at home.
Why not look at a spa day the same way? There’s no need for a 50- or 60-mile round trip when you can do the same thing at home by just buying some really nice products. And you’ll save more than gas by doing it yourself; you’ll also avoid the high charges for the services themselves as well as the long wait for your turn. An added benefit: Your home spa is always open.
Get Smart About Charity
Almost everyone has a preferred cause to which they like to give financial support. It may be local or international, but we all like to help out when we can.
At the same time, many of us find ourselves squirming to come up with gift ideas for friends as their birthdays approach, and we know they’ll struggle when our own birthday rolls around.
Now there are options to beat both of these problems simultaneously. By having friends donate to our favorite charities for our birthdays, we not only avoid receiving white elephants or endless stacks of gift cards, we also help a charity that means a lot to us. And what more gratifying gift is there than knowing you’ve done something good for those in need?
It’s easy to pick the low-hanging fruit when it comes to saving money. The real talent is required for cooking up new ways to cut costs so that we can have the necessities, the fun, and the charity that we want without struggling to make ends meet. Think outside the box and you’ll find you can do lots of these things too.