As the economy struggles and money becomes tighter and tighter, we’re all looking for easy, simple ways to save. These tips can help to keep more of your hard-earned dollars in your bank account…
Save, Save, Save…
Shop Around for Free Checking: Not all banks charge for simply using your account. Avoid the big banks that tend to charge up to $15 in fees, and opt for community banks or credit unions instead. Don’t be afraid to shop around for the best financial institution for you.
Downgrade your Cable: How often do you really watch can’t-miss programs on cable? If the answer is not often, you may want to downgrade your cable package or get rid of it altogether. If you’re already paying for high-speed internet, you can watch those same programs on your computer anyway. You’ll find a lot of sites out there and you can sign up for them a lot cheaper than you’ll be paying for your cable. You don’t miss your favorite programs and you save money; it’s a double win.
Slash Your Phone Bills: Do you really need a landline? Could you get by with just a cell phone; if so, you could save up to $25 a month. Whether you use your landline or your cell, make sure you always check your phone bills. As many as 20 million American households a year are victims of unauthorized charges; you could be unwittingly paying for ring tones, voice mail and other services you never use or don’t need. Query anything that you don’t understand on your bill, especially items listed as service charges or usage fees.
Shut Down the Computer: Closing the computer when you’re not using it, as opposed to leaving it on standby mode, can save up to $4 a month in energy charges. It may not sound a lot right now, but every dollar counts.
Don’t Buy New, Rework the Old: Before you buy new clothes, look through your closet. Is there anything in there that could still be wearable with a nip and a tuck here and there? Raising the hem on a knee-length skirt could give it a new lease of life. Get the sewing machine out or take it to a tailor and keep the money you would have spent on new clothes happily in your bank account.
Rent, Don’t Buy: If you have a special event coming up, don’t feel you have to buy a special dress; rent it instead. You can rent a designer dress at the likes of RentTheRunway.com for around $50.
Save Gas When Driving: If you’re queuing or idling in your car for more than 30 seconds, turn off the engine. Your car will burn as much fuel during two minutes of waiting as it would driving for one mile; that’s gas that you don’t want to throw away. With fuel prices as they are, idling for just 10 minutes every day could cost you $1 a day, and $365 a year. Now you can see it start to add up, can’t you? Another tip to save gas is to slow down and don’t drive faster than 60mph; traveling faster than 60 takes a lot more gas than it does to stay below the speed limit.