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Category Archives: Saving Money Tips
More and more people are starting to realize that their cable or satellite bill is becoming one of their largest monthly expenses. This has led to a large amount of people cutting the cable cord to save money. If you can do with watching new shows or programming later on then cutting back on your cable bill is going to save you money. Lets look at the various ways people are using to cut their cable bills.
Cutting the Cable Cord to Save Money
- Streaming Devices – If you are going to stream programming you are going to need a device that streams. Don’t worry this is no big deal because most newer devices have some kind of streaming capability built into them. All the video game consoles and most blu ray players have streaming capabilities. You can even hook your computer up to your tv and use it as a streaming device. If you want to invest a little more money you can buy a Roku or Apple Tv devise for streaming. Personally I use my PlayStation 4 and my laptop..
- Streaming Services – You have the option of paying for steaming services like Netflix, Amazon Video and Hulu. You can also watch lots of content on YouTube. For a price much cheaper than cable you can watch all of the content you want on demand.
- HD Antenna – If you want to catch Live TV then you may want to consider an HD Antenna. They are affordable and you can probably find one for under $50 and you are on your way to picking up free tv signals. They are like the old rabbit ears you used to find on tvs. The stations you pick up will be based on your location but you should be able to pick up a few local stations which is great for living programming and sports.
- Specialty Channels – If you can’t wait for your favorite shows like the Walking Dead to show up on Netflix you can always buy an online subscription to channels like HBO or Showtime. Some channels will also stream their content on their websites for free. Check out A&E or Adult Swim for example for live streaming.
- Basic Cable – Another option is to just maintain a basic cable package so you can you some local programming and sports and mix it with a streaming subscription.
There are a few ways available to save money by cutting your cable cord. You don’t have to pay $100 a month to watch tv shows. You buy a cheap streaming service like Netflix and back it up with a basic cable package or HD Antenna.
Photo by DoctorButtsMD
I have been making this very basic Crockpot Turkey Chili midweek for the past couple of weeks. It is inexpensive, easy to make and I end up with more than a few meals that are easy to heat up and I find it quite filling. It’s a very inexpensive meal to make.
Frugal Recipe: Crock Pot Turkey Chili
I use a smaller size crockpot and am the only one eating this so just use one can of each and it makes enough for me to have a dinner and a lunch the next day. You can always add more beans or turkey if you like.
- 1/2 Pound of Ground Turkey
- 1 Can Red Kidney Beans
- 1 Can of Pork andBeans
- 1 Can of Crushed Tomatoes
- 1 Can of Tomato Paste
- Jalapeno Peppers , Hot Peppers or Hot Sauce are optional
- Spices to taste such as chili powder, garlic, salt and pepper.
- Brown the turkey in a pan and drain when done.
- Add everything in your crockpot except for the Tomato Paste.
- Let it cook on high for 4 hours at least.
- If you notice it is too watery I will drain some of the liquid out.
- In the last hour or hour and a half I add the tomato paste as it will thicken your chili out.
That is it. An easy meal and you can probably stretch it out for a couple of meals.
Photo by lovecatz
I purchased a portable charger battery off of Amazon recently. The reason for my purchase was to have a back up charger for my smartphone when travelling, playing golf or on a day of hiking. It has also proved handy during a power outage we recently had. Then it dawned on me that I can use this battery to save money and here is how.
Using a Portable Charger to Save Money
What do people who power their house with solar energy do? They charge batteries during the day to build power banks for later use. The same thing can be done with portable chargers and I have been doing this.
I live in an area that has time of use energy charges. The on peak hour rate is quite high compared to the off peak hourly rate. Why charge my electronics during this high rate time if I don’t have to. Game controllers, tablets and phones all require daily or charging every other day.
I charge my portable charger in a few ways. I charge it over night when the rates are lower, I take it to work with me and charge it during the day or I charge it with my car when I am driving. I don’t feel bad about charging it at work because I do use it for charging work related electronics when working remotely or on the road.
Either way I charge the battery as cheap as possible and then use it to recharge my gadgets when they require it during the expensive hours. I realize this is not a major savings and that you have to buy the charger. Every bit counts and you can get a pretty inexpensive power bank on Amazon.
This is one that I am currently using to charge my electronics and gadgets. It’s small enough to pack away for travelling and it easily holds enough charge to keep you up and running and it’s pretty inexpensive.
Easy Ways to Save Money Every Day
Everybody wants to be able to save even a little bit of money every day. If you can save a little bit of money every day you should be able to put something nice away by the end of the month. Think about small victories. A few bucks a day can add up at the end of the week or the end of the month. Here are some easy ways to save money every day.
1. Plan your meals and do a shopping list. If you can put a meal plan together you can then shop and shop wisely for your groceries that you need. It will also stop you from eating out at restaurants or fast food places.
2. Make your own coffee at home. Stop paying crazy prices for a copy of coffee. This is the easiest way to save a few bucks a day. I bring my own tea bags to work and use the milk that is provided. You can also buy those double walled steel mugs that will keep your coffee warm for hours.
3. Learn how to DIY. There are tons of videos online that show you how to do tasks yourself around the house instead of calling a handyman. We don’t recommend that you get in over your head doing things like electrical work or major products. As an example I had a lawnmower that wouldn’t start. I found some videos that walked me through changing the oil and spark plugs, basically giving it a tune up. Saved the cost of taking it to a small engine place.
4. Worry about yourself not others. I have a friend that loves to buy new gadgets and top of the line products. Let him. I don’t need to keep up with him. Worry about myself. A bonus is that I get his leftovers anyways when he moves onto something new.
5. Use free apps and computer programs to track your spending and saving and track your progress. Once you start to see some benefits of your saving you should get inspired to keep things on track.
If you find yourself getting farther behind then ahead when it comes to saving money you could be committing a number of mistakes that are costing you. Lets look at four common mistakes people make when it comes to saving money and how to fix them.
- Ignoring Small Purchases – Small purchases can add up in the long run and not keeping an eye on your small purchases can really put a dent in your wallet. Correct this by keeping track of your small purchases and see if you can cut them back. For example, if you buy several coffees at a shop everyday this will add up. Try bringing your own in a thermos. If you spend a great deal on fast food try packing a lunch instead.
- Ignoring Your Balances – If you are have having a problem saving money chances are you are not on top of the balance in your bank account and you are not watching where the money is going. This relates back to point number one but on a bigger scale. I constantly watch my bank account balance to see where my money is being spent and try to find ways to budget better and spend less.
- High Interest Loans – If you are constantly running over in your bank account, using cash advances on credit cards or high interest debt loans like payday you are not going to get far ahead. You have to start to make changes in your spending habits and do two things. Fix your spending so you are not doing this and get those debts payed off. Start with the higher interest loans first and work your way down.
- Denial – Denial is bad in anything you have a problem with and denial that you are spending too much is a bad way to be. By accepting the fact that you have to save or that you have to stop spending the way you currently are the faster you will get out of the hole you are in.
I realize this all sounds easier said than done and it is. I am not going to lie but if you can start to get a grip on your spending habits, start budgeting, stop borrowing and realize you want to do better, you can.
How to Save Money on Gas in the Winter
Many of us may not realize that we use more gas in our car during the winter time. Your gas efficiency can drop as much as 20% when the weather dip below freezing. There are many reasons for this such as a cold engine takes longer to reach maximum efficiency, cold air causes more drag and people let their cars idle or warm up for too long. All of these have negative effects on your gas mileage and bill.
If you want to save money on gas in the winter time follow these tips:
- Don’t let your car warm up for too long. It will warm up faster while driving. You are getting zero miles to the gallon while it is warming up in your driveway.
- Don’t use defrosters or seat warmers when not necessary they use too much power.
- Check your tire pressure regularly to maximize your ride. You should do this all year round.
- Remove any roof racks or anything else that might promote air drag.
- Park your car in a warm place like a garage or where it might get the benefit of full sun during the day.
- Use a cold weather oil.
- Drive reasonably. Jack rabbit starts and stops waste fuel.
Follow these simple tips and you will be well on your way to saving gas money for your car and putting a little extra in our pockets.
Small expenses can add up to be a big expense in your life. When you talk to most people you will hear them grip about the large expenses in their lives. How much a new tv costs, a car or their heating bill for example. On the same page these same people will spend a large amount of money on small expenses and not even notice it.
Take for example buying a large coffee everyday which may cost you $2. That could be $60 a month. Or consider buy a $10 fast food meal once a week. That’s another $40 you spent without realizing it.
Small expenses are the ones that typically do not give you anything in return. A large expense like an energy efficient appliance at least helps you save money and performs a task. Small frequent expenses or purchases often do neither.
If you want to start saving a bit of money each month then make a list of your small expenses. Getting your monthly bank statement is a good idea. Then start looking for where you can make some cuts. Make your own coffee. Buy in bulk. Buy generic brands. Bring you own water to work. There are lots of ways to shed some of those $5 and $10 expenses each week.
Saving money is one of the most important challenges that most of us face on a daily basis. Yet many of us do things in our attempts to save money that end up costing us money in the long run. I think sometimes we get lost in the idea of trying to save money that we forget to look at what we are actually doing to save.
Here is a perfect example. An acquaintance of mine would often come back from lunch with shopping bags full of “good deals”. The problem with the good deals is that is was mostly stuff she didn’t need and she was spending money needlessly while thinking she was saving money.
I have no need for extra bath towels right now. Why would I go out and buy a bunch of them just because they are on sale. It’s not a very wise way to save money if I am spending it.
If found this article which documents seven myths of saving money that actually cost you. The article goes over sale spending, credit card rewards and the pitfalls of buying in bulk.
As frugal-minded individuals, we love to find ways to save money. Saving money can be a good thing to do as the funds can be used in other areas of your budget to help you live the life you want. However, there are times when what we believe to be saving us money is actually costing us in the long run. – Source
If you are looking for tips on how to save money this Black Friday we have found a great article for you. These money saving tips come from an employee of a Target store and it is packed with a few tips that even caught my eye.
Black Friday always seems a little crazy in retrospect but if you read through this article you might save a little money and might even come out of it a little less bruised.
Some of the tips include using mobile apps to save money, leave electronics until Christmas and even scout out online sales for better deals or deals where you don’t have to get into a fist fight with a group of zombie shoppers.
A Target employee’s guide to saving money on Black Friday
But they do little to save the consumer any money. I implore you: This sensationalized holiday isn’t all that it seems. Will you save money? A little, maybe. For quality items? Probably not. If you insist on foregoing a relaxed Thanksgiving meal with …
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I found out the hard way earlier this summer of just how important it is to review your expenses often to save money. I had been a little lazy in reviewing a few of my bills and regular expenses and that cost me money that I should have been saving and not spending.
Here is an example. My wife signed up for a long distance phone plan quite some time ago when a couple of her friends moved cross country. When reviewing our phone recently I noticed the extra cost on our plan, a cost we were no longer using. We weren’t using it for quite some time to make things worse. If I had been on top of our plan I would have been saving money for months instead of spending it foolishly.
The same thing happened with one of my credit cards. I was paying an annual fee that I had no business paying. I didn’t need the credit card any long and rarely used it. I cancelled it and therefore cancelled an unnecessary expense from my budget.
We were renting a satellite receiver for the kids room at a cost of $3 a month. I found a used one on Kijiji for $30. In 10 months it’s paid for. Small steps but it all counts.
If you want to save money instead of spending it I would suggest taking all of your bills such as cable, phone, cell phone, insurance, bank statements and credit cards and look for unnecessary charges, expenses or plans and cancel them or dial them back.