5 Ways to Save Money Today

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Are you interested in saving money? I hope so! If you can save $100 a month, that’s basically the same thing as making an additional $1,200 a year! I bet you could think of something that you’d like to buy with that extra $1,200. Or, maybe you’d like to invest it and turn it into hundreds of thousands of dollars by the time you retire. Or, perhaps you’d like to build up your savings accounts. Let’s figure out how to turn this idea into actual greenbacks in your pocket!

1) Use Cash – It’s a pretty well-known fact that when you use cash, you spend less than if you use a credit or debit card. Why is this? Because you can actually see the money that you’re dishing out for those goods or services. Suddenly, it becomes much more painful when your $200 makes its way down to $0 in a matter of days. If you were paying for your goods with credit, you most likely wouldn’t even realize how much you’ve spent over that same time-frame.

2) Learn to Barter – This is nearly a lost art, but there are still some people that utilize the power of bartering. Right now, I’m selling my Jeep. Let’s say that I have an interested party that only has $4,000, but I’d like to get at least $6,000 for it. Many buyers would just walk away from the deal with their head down, but the savvy buyer will find some items that may be of value to me in order to make up the difference. Maybe they’re in the siding business and can make up the difference by siding my house. This would more than make up for the $2,000 gap (which would be a win for me), and the buyer no longer had to come up with more cash! Sometimes bartering is a great solution!

3) Take Your Eyes Off That New Car – Sure, it would be cool to drive one of those new cars, but for most of us, it’s just not worth the cost. Did you know that a typical new car will lose 60% of its value in the first 4 years of ownership? That means that if your new ride cost $25,000 when it was brand new, you’ll lose $15,000 by the time 4 years go by, and that’s if you paid with cash! If you bought a new car on the payment plan, you’ll lose $16,000 or more! The best buy is always a gently used car that’s 4 years old or older.

4) Have Fun With Cheap Activities – Good times don’t always need to have a high price tag. In fact, many of your best memories are probably from spontaneous events that cost practically nothing! Outdoor activities are some of the best freebies. Head to the beach, have a picnic, play tennis, beach volleyball, shuffleboard, shoot some hoops, or play some Frisbee. You can have plenty of fun inside too. Play cards, get out those board games, watch a free movie online, or maybe even read a book!

5) Keep an Eye on Those Sale Papers – Even if you don’t buy the newspaper, you probably still have sale papers delivered to your door. Take a careful look at these sales before heading out the door to get your groceries. By keeping your list general (such as “meat” instead of “chicken” or “snack” instead of “Nabisco crackers”), you can probably meet all of your grocery needs with sale items!

Follow these 5 ways to save money and you’ll soon notice your bank account beginning to grow! Good luck!

How do you save money? What suggestions would you have other than the five I listed above?

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Money

Derek

AUTHOR Derek

My name is Derek, and I have my Bachelors Degree in Finance from Grand Valley State University. After graduation, I was not able to find a job that fully utilized my degree, but I still had a passion for Finance! So, I decided to focus my passion in the stock market. I studied Cash Flows, Balance Sheets, and Income Statements, put some money into the market and saw a good return on my investment. As satisfying as this was, I still felt that something was missing. I have a passion for Finance, but I also have a passion for people. If you have a willingness to learn, I will continue to teach.

26 Comments

  1. These are really good tips, but in order for them to really make a difference, you should calculate how much you are saving when you employ each of these tips, and actually set that amount aside in a separate bank account.

    If you just leave the savings in your normal spending account, it’s too easy for it to actually be absorbed into other spending.
    gharkness recently posted..Last Night on the Low-Carb Cruise

    • I like the tip gharkness. Thanks for the comment!

  2. I agree with Gharkness. I save with credit cards because I spend what I need in essence putting aside what I need. Learn to barter is a good idea but easier said than done. And what if you don’t think you have anything to barter. The tip is good but needs tightening or revised.
    Jai Catalano recently posted..My 10 Stock Market Investing Tips I Learned

    • Ohh, I think everyone has something to barter! It could either be a product or a service!

    • Very true. Here in Michigan it would be like earning $1,800 before taxes. That’s quite a few hours worth of work!

  3. Thanks for the tips. You forgot one important point though: barter! Bartering can save you lots of money while you still get the things you need (and you get rid of all the unused stuff). It’s a great concept for almost anything: clothes, shoes, cars, computers and so on. Try barterquest.com, they let you trade almost anything.

    • In case you missed it, bartering was point number 2! Lol. Sometimes it’s tough to get into the mindset of bartering, but once you do, it can really save you some dough!

    • I like these tips David! Negociating and cooking could definitely save some money, but I’m not so sure about growing your own food. In the first year, growing food might actually cost more (with your start up costs) than going to the grocery store. Plus, factor in the amount of time it takes and you might be on the losing end of your dollar.

  4. I like the bartering idea. Maybe you could also add entering giveaways there are so many out there on the web like your recent iPad giveaway and my $50 Restaurant Gift Card Giveaway. The odds are pretty good.
    BrilliantFinances.com recently posted..$50 Restaurant Gift Card Giveaway

    • I suppose you could enter some giveaways. It does get time-consuming though, and the odds are never that great if you think about it. I could better use my time to work and buy the item rather than try to win it.

  5. These tips are an excellent starting point. Over the years, I have done a numbe rof things like bring my lunch or never buy retail. I constantly review my expenses to see if I can reduce them even more.
    Krantcents recently posted..How to Finance Your Start Up

    • Do you also try to find new ways of making money as well? I like to do both.

  6. I suck with cash – I find it makes me spend more because it’s easy. Pulling out a credit card and having to punch in a PIN isn’t as convenient, so I avoid smaller purchases with my credit card. But it depends. Small purchases are my problem area – gum, coffee, lunch – but not everyone’s!
    Daisy recently posted..Life Lessons From My Mother

    • I think small purchases kill quite a few bank accounts. It doesn’t seem like a big deal at the time, but 100 small purchases a month can really add up!

  7. Using cash is timeless and one of my favorites. I love how a simple constraint can make all the difference in our spending habits. It also shows that we all have incredible powers of rationalization. What I mean is that we have the ability to go to great lengths to justify purchases – I’ve seen it with my personal coaching and business clients alike (businesses can do a ton of self inflicted financial damage when the rationalize).
    Nunzio Bruno recently posted..How Not Accepting Credit Cards Will Cost You

    • I couldn’t agree with you more Nunzio. We can talk ourselves into just about anything! What initially sounds like a ridiculous purchase somehow turns into a necessity in our own minds. Crazy. 😉

  8. Geocaching is my favortie FREE activity/hobby/sport. Yes it does cost a little bit of gas money, but you can also make plenty of local finds on your bike!

    • Geocaching is a great activity. It’s pretty cheap and you get some exercise too! Thanks for mentioning it!

    • That showroom car really gets ya when you drive it off the lot, you’re right. Even if I end up a millionaire, I’m still not sure I could do it.

  9. I wasn’t going to say this, but I think the readers (and you) need to be aware. Bartering income is TAXABLE!! Please refer to this page at the IRS website:

    W3C This is a link to the IRS page on bartering.

    I am hoping I linked correctly. I apologize if I didn’t. Can’t seem to do a page preview.
    gharkness recently posted..Last Night on the Low-Carb Cruise

    • Thanks for the heads-up on this gharkness!

  10. I really like the concept of bartering. For me it would be trading skills in tax and finance for expenses to fix things around the house or with the car. Another good idea to take in extra cash is to rent out your car. There are companies such as Getaround that will allow you to rent out your car for cash.
    Tom@BestCarCoverage recently posted..How Dancing with the Stars Relates to Car Insurance

    • Great coment Tom! I have heard about renting out your car. It’s a pretty good idea if you don’t use yours much and you’d like to make a few bucks.


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