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    What are your best money saving ideas?

    Here are my top ones. Be nice if everyone could list different ones that are not already listed to help share ideas.

    #1. Line dry clothes-saves on electric and also if the AC is on, it doesnt have to work as hard.
    #2. Keep heat at 69 when home, 65 when gone. AC is off when gone and at 75 if its truly needed.
    #3 run thd dishwasher only when full, and stop it before it heat drys
    #4 do most shopping at aldi's and use coupons at other stores only if that will bring the item price down to below aldi's price
    #5 handwash my truck with a bucket in the driveway insted of spending $7 at the carwash
    #6 garden. what I can't garden I try to get at the farmers market. If i buy by the bushel at the farmers market, i can freeze or can it
    #7 barter when i can. I have watched our dentist kids in exchange for our insurance copay. he doesnt pay a sitter, i dont pay a copay.
    #8 work part time for the park and rec--this fall i will teach a class 1 night a week for 90 minutes. I get a small wage, but also get free use of the park facalities for myself and my family--which means we get to use the indoor pool free all winter
    #9 mow my own lawn
    #10 bake in bulk-i send baked cupcakes and such in my kids lunches. i bake several dozen at a time. at the end of winter, beginning of spring, i do as many as i can so i can freeze and not have to heat up the oven again when it gets hot out
    #11 i wash my baggies, and use the sandwich and lunch keepers from the dollar store. i made it thru the entire school year with only 1 box of baggies since i recycled and washed
    #12 save all sacks-even petfood sacks can be reused for trash. my trash company makes us use the big bags for pickup, but to keep down on the smell in the house, i always use walmart sacks-when they are full i tye them shut and put in the big bag till it is stuffed to full too hold more.
    #13 i dropped my dish to just the locall chanells only-bill is now $10.99 a month and i get the local weather. before i dropped it, it was $31 a month.
    #14 i sew as much of our clothing as i can and shop consignment stores and ebay. I can even get my daughters school uniforms off ebay as low as .99 cents vs a new one at $60.
    #15 buy our shoes when payless has their sales-buy one and get the second pair for 1 cent or half off.
    #16 use handme downs, and what my kids outgrow goes backon ebay or to the consignment store. A few times I have bought and item used, used it more, and resold it for more than i paid for it.
    #17 i always get my vehicles used and pay cash. secret is to keep them well maintained. also, i always use the same sales lady at the same dealer. she treats me right, tells me if she gets in a new model of what i have, and also sends me lots of coupons for free oil changes on my birthday!
    #18. made insulated curtains-regular curtain on the outside, but the backside is a $1 vinyl-felt tablecloth from the dollar store. it stops drafts during the winter and heat during the summer.
    #19 i replaced the windows on the north side of my house last fall. This past winter was cold, and i had the cheapest heat bills i have ever had--i already got my money back out of the new windows.
    #20 get free firewood from the army corp when they clear land and doze the trees-same with the state dept of conservation. if you cut it and haul it off, you can have it free.
    #21 get our books and movies at the library instead of renting or buying
    #22 order as much as i can online thru mypoints, so i get money back. often i get free shipping this way.
    #23 use vinegar for everything-from cleaning to first aid. much cheaper and healthier
    #24 buy all the white socks for my kids the same-that way they are easier to match and you don't loose a pair because 1 got lost or ripped up
    #25 take classes to learn how to do it yourself. many hardware stores give the classes free
    #26 i buy stuff in the larger instutional size cans, then freeze it in smaller jars that i reuse. i do this with applesauce, corn, greenbeans, peaches, and more.

    #2
    Re: What are your best money saving ideas?

    1. We do for ourselves what we can - no gardener, no cleaning lady, etc.

    2. We don't watch TV very much at all, and thereby don't suffer the discontent that often follows viewing ad after ad after ad designed to make you want more and feel unhappy with what you currently have.

    3. We pay off our credit card in full. If we didn't think we could, we wouldn't spend the money.

    4. We make saving a priority. Money comes out of DH's checks automatically to fund the 401k.

    5. Little things -- we shop thrift/consignment/eBay for clothes. We line dry some of our laundry. We have our heater set to automatically go down at night. We don't go shopping for 'something to do'.

    If I think of more I'll come back.

    Comment


      #3
      Re: What are your best money saving ideas?

      Be creative with entertainment. We honestly never did use the TV or movies all that much, but now I have a running list of some fun free things to do inside. ( around town, costs gas)

      Our favorite three:

      -Pictionary, modified for a 3yo and 1.5yo. I just draw what they ask, or I draw and they tell me what I did, and no I am not an artist, my drawings look lousy, but my kids like them.

      -Charades, modified of course, we just pick animals or something and they make the right sounds with the right number of legs, generally the hard part is to get them to stop doing it and let someone else have a turn.

      -Science expirament, anything with a controled mess goes over very well. (ok I'm the only one who cares about the controled part!)

      Comment


        #4
        Re: What are your best money saving ideas?

        Here are a few things I can add:

        In addition to using the library for books, you can check out magazines which makes you a winner two ways -- no subscription price and no worry over what to do with the magazine after you've read it.

        I make my own coffee and carry it in an insulated cup to work. I bought a reasonably priced bottle and put my iced tea in it for lunch.

        Eat breakfast at home before you go to work instead of hitting the drive thru or the donut or bagel shop.

        If your family likes homemade bread, invest in a reasonably priced bread machine and then make it from scratch with flour and yeast and whatever else the recipe says instead of buying the boxed bread mixes.

        Trade videos with friends.

        I buy cheaper cuts of meat and use that crockpot a lot! I usually have leftovers and I use them for lunches or even parts of other meals. If you cook a pot roast and have some left over, cut it up, save the broth, and put it with cooked noodles in a day or so and you have a wonderfully filling homemade meal.

        I don't buy cookbooks -- I either borrow them from the library, ask friends for recipes we've tried or look for them on the Internet.

        Comment


          #5
          Re: What are your best money saving ideas?

          "I buy cheaper cuts of meat and use that crockpot a lot! I usually have leftovers and I use them for lunches or even parts of other meals. If you cook a pot roast and have some left over, cut it up, save the broth, and put it with cooked noodles in a day or so and you have a wonderfully filling homemade meal. "

          The crockpot is also cheaper to run than the oven, plus, during the summer months it does not add as much heat to the house-So, crookpotting can save you money several ways.

          Comment


            #6
            Re: What are your best money saving ideas?

            Breakfast, DH packs it in addition to lunch (we are not morning people, so we never get up early enough to eat) Some days it is a not so healthy brownie, or poptart. But lately it has been a bagle (packs some butter for it) or a thing of yogurt (plain with chocolate chips packed for it).

            Healthier than skipping, and way cheaper than stopping at a restaurant.

            Comment


              #7
              Re: What are your best money saving ideas?

              1. I cloth diaper (making my own saves me even more than buying from off the internet and in stores) some of my diapers are made from old sheets, shirts, sweaters, blankets and scrap material. This saves me an average of $60-80 a month. I also use my own homemade babywipes made out of scrap pieces of flannel material or old wash cloths.

              2. we do not buy paper towels nor napkins that often (dh and his friend sneaks in a roll from time to time) I use kitchen hand towels. Also coffee filters helps with streaks when towel won't work (it is rare but some times I need to) I make my own napkins.

              3. I make some of my cleaning products. I have a bottle of water and bleach, a bottle of vinegar and water, some times make a scrubbing soultion(sp?) of dishsoap(hand) and baking soda, use vinegar in laundry and in dishwasher, my mop uses dishsoap instead of floor cleaners ( http://www.lnt.com/product/index.jsp...entPage=search ) it is also machine washable i also own a Scunnci steam cleaner which helps cut back on cleaning products.

              4. I make my own liquid hand soap from bars of soap shreaded up and added water.

              5. I reuse bottles from soda, juice, milk, and water and fill them back up with water so we have water for walks.

              6. I run the washer in the middle of the night to hit non peak hrs on electric. I also am using just the cold/cold cycle on all my loads. Also make sure there is a FULL load.

              7. I hand/machine sew some of my children's clothing (mostly pjs but still saves), blankets, curtains, and odds and ends.

              8. I own a bagless vacuum. Now no worries about running out of bags nor having to run to walmart cause they were the only ones who sold the bags to my old vacuum.

              9. We are limiting electric usage. Turning off lights when leaving a room plus leaving most lights off during the day and opening curtains to use natural lighting. we also have the tv off 90% of the day (nothing really on we don't have cable/satalight(sp?))

              10. I try to hand wash dishes when I can and just use the dishwasher as a drying rack.

              11. I LOVE to bake. I try to keep some treats made for snacking that way ppl are not in and out of the my fridge which uses electric up and my food bill does not go way up.

              12. I buy in bulk. The bigger the container the better. Even though I have a large family I find that if separate like meats and freeze them it last longer. Cereal is a must in bulk kids go threw it too fast. Syrup lasts A LONG time. baking items are WAY cheaper. And so on......

              13. I am trying out making my own condiments. I already make tartar sauce (taste just like what you buy in store but I also am still using store bought mayo for this). I am learning to make mayo and salad dressing right now. Debating if I want to try making my own ketcup and mustard.

              14. I am buying my ink for my printer off the internet saving me ALOT. Someone did say beware on it back firing and leaking ink all over but I have not had the problem just yet so we will stick with it for now.

              15. I use a digital camera. I choose which pictures stay and what go and I choose which get printed or just stay on disk. I also watch for those 5+ free prints places offer

              16. I use rechargable batteries. My digital camera just eats batteries right up but with rechargables they last along time. Plus ugh kids' toys eat them too. I spend maybe $20 on rechargables and they last me a yr and half.

              17. I am a SAHM (stay at home mom) this saves us child care costs since my dh's schedule is NUTS he works days, nights, and weekends so there is no time for me to work with 4 kids. Plus I babysit so I get a small income from doing that(I am home anyway why not LOL) so I do all the cleaning and so on so no hired help LOL

              Comment


                #8
                Re: What are your best money saving ideas?

                cont...

                18. I look for as much freebies and samples as I can. They help emergencies. Also do free events to keep kids happy.

                19. I cut mine and my kids' hair. This saves me $144 a yr. They have to have it done atleast 3 times a yr. I also home color mine.

                20. Handmedowns are a life saver!!! Majority of our clothes are from generous ppl who just want to clean out their closets. We also shop thrift stores. And don't forget those CLEARACE rakes OMG OMG OMG I am a clearance nut LOL

                21. We have very generous friends who are willing to babysit for free. This saves alot.

                22. I use everthing to its DEATH. It has to be literally on its last leg before I throw things out. My last couch was literally with the springs out before we threw it out. I fix whatever can be fixed til it can not be fixed again.

                23. I try to hand make cards and gifts.

                24. I don't jump at every little sniffle the kids get. We keep cold/flu/alergy meds in the house at all times. This saves time, gas, meds, and copay. Plus my kids rarely get sick.

                25. rarely use the van. Only use it maybe once a week to do grocery shopping. I walk to pretty much everywhere. Ok it does help I don't have a liciense and dh has a work truck.

                26. Dh uses free rental coupons from Blockbuster for his videogames he wants to play but unsure of if he wants to buy plus if we don't have the money for it he atleast gets to play it.

                27. we use Blockbuster online to get our movie rentals. I know there are cheaper ones out there but with the 2 free movie/video game rentals from their land store it saves us more money than just getting movies.

                28. We RARELY eat out. Since it costs us $30 just for fast food we just try not to go out with everyone. $30 will feed us all for 3 days instead of just 1.

                29. Dh now plays videogames 90% of his time after work instead of going to a bar to play darts. He use to be on a league but it was costing us $80+ a week for him to do that and we were suffering with food.

                30. I am a coupon clipper and a member of stores' preferred shoppers clubs I plan to go back with Costco or Sam's club to save in bulk.


                I can't think of any more right off the top of my head and kids are complaining they want breakfast.

                Comment


                  #9
                  Re: What are your best money saving ideas?

                  Hi,

                  This is my first post.

                  I tend to avoid the latte factor, small purchases that will cost me a lot.

                  Comment


                    #10
                    Re: What are your best money saving ideas?

                    Here's another one -

                    When you're shopping, make a list and stick to it. It helps you avoid impulse buys. Taking an extra minute or two to make out a list will help insure that you buy what you need, and nothing more.

                    And another one -

                    Consider cutting back on, or eliminating altogether, the amount of meat you eat, particularly if you are used to eating expensive meat.

                    Comment


                      #11
                      Re: What are your best money saving ideas?

                      Originally posted by DivaJen
                      Here's another one -

                      When you're shopping, make a list and stick to it. It helps you avoid impulse buys. Taking an extra minute or two to make out a list will help insure that you buy what you need, and nothing more.

                      And another one -

                      Consider cutting back on, or eliminating altogether, the amount of meat you eat, particularly if you are used to eating expensive meat.

                      Oh yeah that is a good one I every so often do that but I rarely stick to it. I wind up forgeting something.

                      Comment


                        #12
                        Re: What are your best money saving ideas?

                        I think discounted gift cards have been my best money-saving idea. Anytime I know in advance that I'll need something (anything!), I'll go to EBAY gift certificates and see what's out there. I've gotten gas gift cards (not really the great deal they used to be, but with the price of gas these days, better than nothing!), and any store under the sun.

                        Then, I came across Main Street Savings, where you can buy $25 gift certificates to a bunch of different stores, restaurants, etc., and for each one you buy, they credit you back $5 at the end of the month, for a savings of 20%. I bought $350 worth of cards, got the cards within a week and the $70 credit by the end of my billing cycle. They have stores like Target, Amazon, JC Penney, Toys R Us, Kohls, etc., so it's been, and will be, a really great deal for me, especially for birthday and Christmas presents.

                        Comment


                          #13
                          Re: What are your best money saving ideas?

                          My #1 Saving idea (these have all been very impressive!):

                          Write down everything you spend. It's like magic.

                          Comment


                            #14
                            Re: What are your best money saving ideas?

                            New poster to the site. Luckily I am still single (read high disposable income) but I love being able to put money away each month. My best money saving idea is to buy the entertainment book for your area. I travel to see family and friends and the car rental coupons alone save me more then the book costs ($30).

                            But for families with children for example, target has a coupon that if you fill a subscription, you get a 10 dollar gift card. Lots of tickets for movies at discount prices so if you want to go instead of paying $9.50 for a movie, get them for 6 bucks a piece with coupons.

                            My other favorite, is I had an extra coffee maker my sister gave me. I brought it to work and make coffee in my cube. To make it better, my neighbor buys the coffee.

                            You might check but a lot of libraries let you check out movies...

                            Comment


                              #15
                              Re: What are your best money saving ideas?

                              Our library lets us check out movies, cds as well as books

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