Ways To Save Money

After reading (and laughing) at Yahoo tips on how to save money (I laugh because I do all of them, and then some), I decided to blog about a few money saving tips that I’ve been doing since college. Funny, even though I’m pretty financially sound right now, I still exercise these ways on saving money. Brian calls me a depression baby because of how I’m not willing to spend, how I constantly look out for how we spend our money, and of course, my constant worry over money.

Here’s a few tips that I have been doing since before college:

  • Set your room temperature to 68 in the winter and 75 in the summer. I don’t know how much money I’ve saved on my electric bill by wearing extra clothes around the house in the winter. This tip easily saves a boat load. Our electric bill is usually around $50/month all year long.
  • Buy wood. If you’re fortunate enough to have a woodstove, turn your heat down to a bare 60°. Use firewood in the winter. To heat our apartment in Frostburg, it cost us around $30/month in electric and $200/4 months firewood. Worth it. Also, isolate your house/apartment if necessary. Heat will stay in. They sell kits at any hardware store/Walmart.
  • Light candles. Lighting candles also increases the temperature in a room, and it makes the room smell good!
  • Don’t go out to eat. Try to cut back as far as you can on this luxury. I know it’s hard, but eating in, even if it is just by yourself, can save a boat load.
  • When going out to eat, order water. I don’t think I can count the money I’ve saved ever since high school from just ordering water instead of a beverage. Think about it, that $2 adds up, A LOT.
  • Cut each others hair. I saved a boat load in college by letting my friends cut my hair instead of paying a barber $20 to do it. Even now, Brian cuts my hair. I haven’t been to a barber in years.
  • Don’t splurge. Simple enough. If you don’t think you can afford it, don’t buy it. If you think it might hurt you later by buying something, simply leave the item alone until you feel more comfortable. It’ll be there later.
  • Buy things in bulk. When you have it, spend the extra few dollars to buy something in bulk instead of single items. Usually it’s much cheaper, price compare just in case. Use your parents Sam’s Club card, if they have one.
  • Buy things on sale. Don’t buy it just because it’s on sale, buy it if you need it, or may need it later. I understand brand names are a big one, but on the ones that you are able to “live with”, buy it when on sale.
  • Coupons, coupons, coupons. Get as many as you can on stuff you buy all the time. If you don’t need it but can afford to, buy the item if you have a coupon to use it later. Coupons have saved us so much money. Brian said, while he was cashiering, he’s seen totals of $90 go down to $20 because of coupons. It takes time to look, but coupons can save you a boat load at the store, on your car, out to eat, etc.
  • Don’t put too much stock into brand names, when you can. There are a few things that I don’t care, no taste difference, when buying brand names. Examples are sugar, pasta, stick butter, seasoning, milk, meat, potatoes, and all cleaning supplies. I ALWAYS buy store brand of these. Examples where I’m a brand name guru are cereal, cookies, biscuits, cakes, soda, soups, etc.
  • Buy two liters instead of cans. When cans are on sale, we get them, but that’s only. Two liters have saved us a lot over the years. Yes, they go flat easily, but that’s a sacrifice you have to make.
  • Don’t do a full pump of soap. Soap companies make it so that a lot comes out of the container in one simple pump. Pump softly, to get a little, it lathers anyway and your hands will be just as clean. A little dab’ll do ya.
  • Use the last of everything. The last slither of everything, over time, can save. I put water in my soap dispensers and laundry detergent when they get down to a certain level and mix it up. I get more uses this way and it does the same job. I also use the very last of butter, scrape sides of everything. That little bit can butter another biscuit!
  • Use towels instead of paper towels. Doing ordinary chores such as cleaning the counters, tables, and windows, use junk towels or wash clothes instead of using paper towels. Just throw them in the washer when you’re done. This saves on paper towels. Also, dry your hands with towels instead of paper towels. Simple.
  • Refill your water bottles. This saves a ton. Refill with tap water, it’s fine. I did this back in college and I still do it now.
  • Rechargeable batteries. Yup, when we got our Wii, I concluded my days of using ordinary batteries you have to buy over and over again were done. I have about 20 batteries that I use in everything, and just recharge when they’re done.
  • Rent movies instead of going to the movies. Going to the movies is a HUGE expense. It’s not worth it. Think about a ticket and a SMALL pop corn, $20, well that could have afforded you the DVD, couldn’t it? Yeah, maybe you won’t have much to talk about with friends, but it saves a lot of money in the long run. And when you have a group of friends who want to do something, rent some movies. Easy.
  • If you’re going to drink, don’t go out, buy from a liquor store and drink it at home. You won’t get pulled over from drunk driving, either. Don’t order drinks with your meal, they costs as much as you could buy at a liquor store for the ingredients! Don’t drink at bars, either. Simply buy stuff from a liquor store and drink them at home. It’s funner, too. The advantages of doing it this way are endless. Saves money, no drink and driving, a better time, ingredients left over, etc. We usually go to a bar first, then drink later at home, if you want that social atmosphere.
  • Get an Entertainment Book. I’m not sure how much they are. Last I heard they were $50 but they have thousands in savings if you use it. Lots of coupons! Good for families.
  • Get stuff from fast food restaurants. Napkins, straws, forks, etc can all be found at McDonalds and other restaurants. Just when you’re there, grab some extra for the house. This also works for salt and pepper, ketchup, and other stuff. Also, when you eat out at these places, REFILL your drink before you leave. Put it in the fridge for later!
  • Don’t discard change. It adds up.

I hope these simple tips can help you save money, as they’ve helped me over the years. I don’t think I can count how much money I’ve saved by doing some/all of these. Your standard of living DOESN’T go down as much as you think. So you don’t go out with your friends as much as you can/used to, but odds are, they’re looking to save money, too.

What “Heaven” Is Like
The Prius & 193%


  1. What are litters instead of cans?

    Do you mean 2 LITER bottles or do you mean like, cat litter?

  2. Spell check, damn you!!! Of course I mean two liters.

  3. Thanks for writing this.

  4. Janny this is a wonderful list! Brett and I just recently started the “cut each other’s hair” so that will save a lot. Except it turned into…me cutting Brett’s hair then me cutting my own hair when he messed up :-P But I’m sure he can learn.

    Ordering water is a huge savings. For instance last weekend, I went with 5 others to a tapas place. The other side of the table (3 people) ordered alcoholic beverages – a couple rounds, and many orders of tapas. My side of the table (3 people) ordered all water, 1 order each and 1 order to share. The total bill for my side of the table was $40 for 3 people. The total for the other side of the table was $140 for 3.

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