Do you ever wish you could just take a few baby steps right now, to help you feel more in control of your spending? Do you want to do something right now, without leaving your home, that will start moving your money mindset in the right direction?
Each of these 7 changes can help you save money – and every penny saved has a wealthy purpose. You may have heard of them – but you may not have done them. They are right there, steps away from you. Go ahead. Pinch your pennies.
Baby Steps to Save Money
- Turn down the thermostat. I can hear you say, “we all know about turning down the thermostat, Cash.” It is definitely not an eye-opening suggestion. But the word is that if you turn the thermostat from 72 degrees down to 68 degrees during the day, you can save 10% off your bill. According to Energy.gov, the lower the temperature in your home, the slower the heat loss. I keep my thermostat around 67 degrees. I wear slippers and a sweater in the house to stay toasty. If you simply can’t bear going below 70 degrees during the day, then consider lowering the number at night, when you are comfy in bed.
- Cut the meat in half. If you make meals using ground meat, cut the amounts in half, and add another cup of beans, rice, or vegetables to make up the difference. You will double the amount of meals, and keep some money in your pocket.
- Stretch the laundry detergent. You really don’t need to measure to the line. Try cutting back just a little, and the next time a little more, until you find the magic place where you can be happy with the result but still save money. Add a little white vinegar to the detergent bottle when it is “empty,” and you’ll find enough soap to do a few more loads.
- Get the crockpot out of the basement. Plug it in and use it. You can throw together a great meal in minutes and step away from the counter. Then come back to those delicious smells that make you want to eat at home more often. Dinner doesn’t get any easier. You can find some inexpensive recipes here.
- Change the lightbulbs. Get up, and get those energy-efficient lightbulbs that you bought but never installed. Install them. And then turn off that light, because you aren’t staying in that room anyway. My dad used to say, “The sofa doesn’t need to see.”
- Brushy brushy. Did you know that up to 13% of toothpaste is left in the tube after you have squeezed the dickens out of it? If you cut the end of the tube and then along the side, you will be able to scrape the rest of it out. It sounds cheapskate, but really, do you routinely throw out 13% of everything you buy? Imagine leaving that much in the bottom of the milk carton – totally wasteful, eh? Tiffany at Don’t Waste the Crumbs found out how much money she could save by stretching the toothpaste tube.Lotion and soap pump containers also leave product in the bottom. Tap it for savings.
- Use the good napkins. You know those awesome linen napkins that you keep for company? Bring them out of hiding. Cloth napkins are soft and absorbent, better for the environment and better for the budget.
I keep a half dozen for the dinner table, but when I talk about cloth napkins that also includes all the cloth squares or rectangles I made from leftover fabric, old clothing, and washrags that I use for kitchen duty instead of paper towels. I can’t tell you how much I have saved over the years by banning paper towels from the house – not just for the savings, but for the planet.
How can you save pennies without leaving the house?