Saving Money with More Tips
By Nikki Willhite
Here are a few more tips to save
money. Be sure and visit the links above for many more tips.
Automobiles – buy at the end of the year, and purchase a
fleet vehicle with low mileage. Take good care of it, inside and out,
and keep it for years. My Prism is a ’91- and it is a good
looking car (waxed twice a year) and totally reliable (50,000 miles and well
Appliances – do your research, and buy appliances with a
good consumer rating that last.
Babies – buy as many clothes and furniture items as
you can used, at garage sales or online. Look to family and friends
for hand-me-downs. Use a food processor and make your own baby food.
Budgeting – Know where your money goes. Pay
yourself first- at least 10%. Expenses always rise to meet income, so
try and put the money aside before it ever reaches your hands. If you
don’t have a savings plan from your employer, have the bank do an automatic
weekly transfer from your checking to your savings account.
Children – Teach them the value of money so you avoid
the “gimmes”. Involved them in wholesome activities, such as scouting.
Do as many activities with them as your time permits so you will have
a good relationship and they will avoid the pitfalls of adolescence.
Children's Stories – Read to your children when they are
young. Foster appreciation for books and education. Encourage
good grades and study habits. Scholarships save money.
Christmas & Gifts - Don’t fall prey to materialism.
Luxury and high priced gifts are not necessary to show love, the one thing
that bring you the most happiness.
Cleaning & Clutter
– Avoid accumulating over-priced, and
unnecessary cleaning products. Be as organized as possible so that
which you have purchased is used, items you already have are not purchased
again because they are “lost”ost under the bathroom sink, or become
too old to use.
Clothing & Beauty - Be smart with your wardrobe.
Buy classic clothes that will last for years. Buy quality neutrals for
the bottom half of your body. Keep your more trendy clothing near your
face, in less expensive items. Mix and match all the items you can in
your wardrobe. Keep children’s clothing in primary, unisex colors, so
they can be passed down, with minor alterations.
Computers – Make good use of your computer. Save
money with online banking, correspondence, education, investments, greeting
cards, recipes, research and more.
Credit, Credit Cards &
Identity Theft – Check your banking
and credit card accounts often.
The Summer of My Discontent to read about my
Debt – If possible, avoid debt except for your
home and for educational expenses.
Decorating Basics – Buy classic upholstered furniture
that can be slip covered if necessary, and keep carpet and large furniture
pieces in neutral colors. Add color to your room with paint and
Decorating Room by Room
– Avoid trendy items that you will
soon tire of.
Landscaping – Plant trees around
your home to help with utility bills. Deciduous trees shade your home
in the summer, while letting the sun in during the cold winter months.
Start a garden, and grow the food your family loves and will eat. Do
your research so that you prepare the soil properly for an abundant harvest.
Happiness - Keep positive, and you will strengthen your
immune system, and have less trips to the doctor.
Healthy Living - Avoid recreational eating. Maintain a
healthy, stable weight. Have more energy for the things you want and
need to do, and avoid excess spending on clothing because of weight
Hobbies and Crafts – Use your hobby or craft to pick up a
little extra money, or to support your crafting itself. Sell a few of your
items, or give them as gifts.
Celebrations – Establish family
traditions with your celebrations. Spend your money on the things you
will really enjoy. Visit those less fortunate with your children
to help them appreciate their blessings during the holidays. It
doesn’t cost a lot of money to make a batch of cookies and deliver them to
someone who will appreciate both your visit and the cookies.
Homes, Buying and
Selling – When possible, stay in the
same home as long as possible. Get a 15-year fixed rate mortgage, or
make extra principal payments on a 30-year loan. Work toward the goal
of home ownership.
Home Improvement and
Maintenance – Maintain your
property. Check often for water or insect damage, which can end up
costing you thousands of dollars if it gets out of control. Be a good
neighbor. Good friends share, and you will all benefit.
Investing, Taxes and
Retirement – Always take advantage
of any employer fund that provides a matching sum of money. Start
investing as soon as you can. Put that $10 a week for pizza in
a mutual fund with a 9 percent annual
return, and in 30 years it will be worth a quarter of a million
dollar. Don’t assume you won’t ever be that old or that you won’t need
Jobs and Careers – Invest in yourself. The higher the
educational level, the more money and security you will have throughout your
Kitchen Help – Avoid convenience foods.
Make as many of your foods from
scratch as time will allow. Know which boxed products save money, such
as cake mixes.
Parenting Help – Be good to your children, and they will be
your friends for life. If you are lucky enough to have them live near
you, not only will you reap the benefit of their love, but you will share
many, many things, saving you both money.
Weddings – Getting married doesn’t
have to cost money. Having an expensive wedding and reception isn’t
going to make the marriage last longer or be more stable. Don’t give
in to materialism.
Shopping Help – Think of your purchases in terms of time.
Is that blouse you want really worth 5-hours of your time?
Simple Living – Live simply and you will avoid stress.
Do you really need to read another manual for some new gizmo you don’t
Utilities - Have a home energy check by a professional
to learn where you can save the most energy fixing up your home.
Insulation usually provides the most return for your money.
Keep your water heater no higher than 120
degrees F, and check to see if it has a “vacation setting” if you leave
town. Always run full loads in your washing machine and dishwasher, as
most of the cost of these appliances comes from heating up the water.
Vacations – Take up camping.
After the initial expensive, it is
frugal, family fun.