The following are a few simple ways my hubby and I save money for our family without spending hours clipping coupons or filling out surveys. Seriously, with three kids under the age of four, I need fast, easy, and no-fuss solutions. Please let me know your hacks in the comment section below!
1. Cut The Cable / Satellite TV. Not only will you watch less television, but for a lot less money you can get a service like Netflix or Amazon and gain a lot more control over what your kids see.
2. Paint Your Own Nails. I love having pretty nails, but as a mom with young kids, even shellac lasts about 4 days on my fingers. Every time I do my own nails I figure I’m saving about $45. Read how, here!
3. Use “Grocery Store Makeup.” Now, when it comes to foundation, I have to have a more expensive quality brand. I seriously look like a molting lizard when I use the cheap stuff. But for things like mascara, lipstick, or eyeliner, I go cheapo and spend less than $10 per item.
4. Check For Your Favorite Store’s App. My local grocery store has an app that allows you to find and use coupons right on your cell phone, which means I don’t have to sit down with a pair of scissors and a newspaper and painstakingly cut those things out. I don’t have time for that!
5. Buy Generic Brands. You have to pick and choose with this one, but most of the time I’ve found that I can get a product I really like for a little less just by buying the store version.
6. Make Home Cooked Meals As Often As Possible. Eating out is comparatively expensive, plus you have to tip. When you do eat out, an easy way to lower your bill is by skipping the appetizers and drinking water.
7. Create A Meal Schedule. Figure out seven to fourteen easy, low-cost meals so you know exactly what to budget for groceries every month. This will also greatly speed up your prep time, because you’ll get into a routine and eventually won’t even have to consult a recipe.
8. Stick To A Grocery Shopping List Based On Your Meal Plan. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve bought something on a whim. If you only (or mostly) buy ingredients you’ll definitely use, you’ll not only spend less, but you’ll always have exactly what you need in stock. This saves you time.
9. Cut Back On Alcohol, And If You Smoke, Quit. Easier said than done, I know, but it’s amazing how much money you save, and it’s better for your health too.
10. Buy Nice Clothes And Only If You Love Them. I used to buy cheap clothes thinking I was saving money. In addition to never fitting me quite right, they wore out faster and needed to be replaced more frequently, costing me more money and more time. However, for a little extra money, I now get higher quality clothes that last longer and make me feel prettier. It sounds ironic, but when it comes to clothes, you can actually spend more to spend less. You just have to shop smart and strategically hit sales for the best deals. Check this post for more ideas on how to do this well!