Guest post from Sarah of Saving Money Never Goes Out of Style
When it comes to savings, we often spend a lot of time focusing on coupons, special sales, and the hottest deals of the week. However, some of us frugal moms know it goes much further than that! Saving money for your family isn’t just about hunting down the next deal, but about making small lifelong changes in your home.
Here are 7 simple ways to save money every day that are easy to implement into your daily life. While not all will work for every family, you’ll easily find some tips that are simple changes you won’t even notice or feel like you’re sacrificing.
1. Ditch Paper Towels
If you have kids in the house you know that paper towels can be a monthly investment. Between meals, cleaning spills, and wiping sticky hands you are throwing away a ton of money each year.
Instead of buying paper, invest in some nice cloth napkins for your kids to use at meal time. Grab some old hand towels and wash cloths and designate those for cleaning up spills.
Tip: Colorful bandanas make great color coded dinner time napkins for large families! Each person has their own color to use.
2. Turn Off & Unplug Electronics
This is a great way to save money. While the savings are small, they do add up over time. Turn off all electronics when not in use and make a habit of hitting light switches as you leave a room as well.
Go even further by unplugging in between uses, too. That toaster sitting out on your counter that is rarely used? Simply unplug it and save yourself some money.
3. Plan a Menu
Taking the time to make a menu plan will cut back on last-minute take out and wasted food. And don’t forget to utilize your slow cooker during the school year or a busy season!
By having a plan in place, you will use more of what you have on hand and cut back on extra spending. No more running to the store for that one ingredient you forgot!
4. Learn To Sew
This is a great tip for those with girls, especially. Old pillowcases, t-shirts, ladies’ dresses, or men’s shirts can all be easily revamped and tailored into dresses for little girls. Shopping the thrift shop for gently used clothes in different patterns and styles can also lead to fun new revamped ensembles with a bit of sewing.
If you’re not a seamstress, even something as simple as replacing a button instead of throwing an item out is helpful. Or, if you have a son like mine, when he blows out the knees in his jeans, you can easily make them into shorts for the next season!
5. Brown Bag It
Taking your own lunch consisting of healthy portions of leftovers or specific lunch items can really save you a lot of money over time. If you also learn to make your own snacks and gourmet coffee, you’ll significantly increase your savings.
Don’t have time to make your own snacks all the time? Buying a box of granola bars in store is far cheaper than buying a single bar from the gas station or vending machine.
Do your kids like Lunchables? Make your own! All it takes is Ritz crackers, some deli meat, and cheese singles, and you’re good to go.
6. Cook From Scratch
It may seem like it will take so much more time, but simple things like making soups and beans in a slow cooker can cost a fraction of what canned varieties do.
Grab dry beans for $1-$2 a pound and cook them in your crock pot all day. When cooked, a $1 bag of dried beans will often be the equivalent to 4-5 cans you would have purchased at $1each. Over a year’s time, that can add up to quite a bit of savings in your grocery budget.
7. Pay With Cash
Make a point of paying for things with cash. There is a lot to be said about the concept of not buying anything else for the month once you run out of cash on hand. It helps you stay within your means, and not rely on credit cards. It also gives you a chance to save that change in a piggy bank for rainy days, treats, or vacations.
No matter what your household budget is, you can easily put into place a few of these 7 simple ways to save money every day and increase the money in your pocket. These things can free up money to pay off debt, or simply help you stop living paycheck to paycheck.
What simple things do you do to save money every day?
Sarah is a stay-at-home mom of two wonderful children. From homeless to well-off, this single debt-free mom is most known for her ability to live well on $18k/year. Sarah loves encouraging others that dreams do come true if they are willing to consistently work for it. Follow her blog: Saving Money Never Goes Out of Style.