Saving money in little ways can help you reach your financial goals.
Sometimes people mistakenly believe that saving money takes too much effort. It can be hard work. It can be challenging to maintain money-saving stamina.
But, it can also go a long way to helping you stretch your budget, pay down debt, save for the future, and make it through an economic crisis.
Here are 5 relatively quick and painless ways to save money:
1. Eat at home.
Eating your meals at home, brewing your own coffee, and otherwise avoiding take-out and restaurants is a sure-fire way to save some cash. Unless you’ve got FREE coupons, eating out will cost more money than cooking the same food at home. And it doesn’t have to be complicated!
Check out these posts for inspiration:
- 8 Ways to Avoid Eating Out
- 12 Easy Meals to Make when There’s “Nothing” to Eat
- Eat Real Food: 10 Easy, No-Cook Suppers
2. Use the library.
Last night I was reading a friend’s review of a book to my husband. He thought it sounded interesting. Rather than pay big bucks to buy the book that we may or may not like, I checked the library. In a few clicks I was able to locate the book, “borrow” the digital version from our local library, and download it to our Kindle.
Free information in an instant!
Check out what your library offers; there may be more choices and resources than you thought imaginable. They’re not technically “free”; your tax dollars pay for it. But, you won’t be out any cash provided you return the item in time.
3. Shop your closet.
Feeling blah about your clothes? Think a little retail therapy will cure what ails you. Consider doing a closet clean out instead. You might find things that you forgot you had as well as find new inspiration for how to put things together.
Do a little scrolling on pinterest to see what catches your eye. You might be able to recreate the looks you like based on items you already own!
4. Turn off the lights.
Last summer we participated in SDGE’s program to reduce our use. Being mindful of what devices were plugged in and running — and then unplugging them when not in use — made a big difference in our energy usage.
So, go through your house on a regular basis and unplug what’s not being used. If you can, install timers in rooms that have a lot of in and out traffic. Use fewer light bulbs in rooms that don’t need the extra light.
Electricity is one of those silent and invisible expenses. It’s hard to track, but the price can certainly add up.
5. Borrow it.
If you don’t need something long term or aren’t sure that you’ll use it to make it worth it, then borrow or rent the item. A friend’s son needed a special shirt for a school presentation. Rather than go out and buy one, she posted a call to borrow on Facebook.
Need special shoes for a wedding? Ask your friends to see if someone has a pair languishing in a closet. Think you want to become a connoisseur of homemade ice cream? Borrow a friend’s machine before you plunk down the cash to buy one, not sure that you’ll actually use it.
A drop of water doesn’t seem like much, but a steady stream of drops can fill a mighty bucket. Likewise, little ways to save money will help you get to your financial goal.
This is Frugal Friday. In an effort to make these weekly financial discussions more interactive, I’m no longer posting a link-up. Feel free to leave a link in the comments. But better yet, chat with us on today’s topic.