Recently my husband and I sat down to look at our expenses. We noticed that so many of our reoccurring expenses have slowly risen over the last couple of months. Our internet and phone bill had both gone up because we had come out of the "promo period". It was time for me to call around and negotiate some better rates.
With around a month left before Christmas, I feel like now is a great time to try to save a little more money. Any extra money I save between now and then can go toward Christmas presents or the extra spending that always seems to come with Christmas.
But, no matter what time of year it is you may be looking to have a little extra in your pocket at the end of every month. If you would like a little extra money check out these easy ways to save hundreds every month.
Eat From The Pantry
I am always amazed what I can find hidden in my pantry. I often buy an ingredient for a meal I never make or have half a pack of spaghetti noodles leftover from another meal. I can usually find at least 2-3 meals that I put together from my pantry or fridge. If you are trying to save more money every month eating from the pantry can be a great way to save. Each week before you make out your meal plan see what leftovers or extras you have in your pantry and fridge. Make sure you make meals using those first before planning new meals.
Negotiate Better Rates
This is one of my favorite ways to save money. I call around to different services like the phone company, the internet, and alarm system and get a better rate. Most of the time I can save at least $5-$10 a month just by asking for a discount. $5-$10 may not seem like a lot, but if I do that with each service I can usually save around $30-$50 dollars a month. I have found that I usually have to do that once a year, but I can spend about an hour on the phone and save over $500 a year.
Cut Your Own Hair
I stopped paying for haircuts for my son and cut his hair using a hair trimmer. I pretty much paid for the hair trimmer the first time I bought it. If you have boys this is a great way to save extra money. Amazon sells the trimmers for around $15. You can save $100's a year just by cutting hair instead of paying for haircuts.
Although I do almost all of my grocery shopping at Aldi and Meijer, I love doing the drugstore deals each week for toiletries. I pick up freebies or cheap items and save so much all year long. It's nice to have a good stockpile of toiletries too. I never have to worry about running out of deodorant last minute. 😉 If you have a CVS, Walgreens, or Rite-Aid nearby you can stop by and do the weekly deals.
Use a programmable Thermostat
Programmable thermostats are a great way to save money on heating and cooling bills. By programming it lower during the day or at night you can save as much as $150 dollars a year. In winter I can turn the temperature down at night and have the house warmed back up when I wake up in the morning. You can get them starting at $19.99 on Amazon, so they will easily pay for themselves within a month or two.
Grow Your Own Food
Gardening can be a great way to save $100's if not $1000's a year on food. You can easily grow your own fruits and veggies at home and save. If you don't have a lot of room for a garden you can try container gardening. I am awful at keeping plants alive but have had good luck growing food in water. You can see some of my favorite foods to grow in water here.
Shop With Cash
If you are trying to save extra money each month shopping with cash can make it easier. When you only have a certain amount of money on you, it makes it much harder to impulse buy. I love shopping with cash for groceries to keep the things like chips and snacks that we really don't need out of the cart. If you impulse buy on clothes switching to a cash-only method of buying clothes can help you save too.
Eat Less Meat
Switch up your menu and try vegetarian once a week to save money. You can easily save $5 a meal by eating beans & rice and that adds up. I create vegetarian and beans & rice boards on Pinterest and then make sure I pick one meal from each of the boards every week. It is an easy way to help keep our grocery bill down and save more money.
You don't have to be a crazy couponer to save some cash using coupons. Just printing or clipping a few coupons a week will save you money. If you don't like taking the time to cut coupons most stores have an online app you can use to clip ecoupons. Meijer even has a barcode scanner you can use on the products to see if they have a matching ecoupon to the product. I have saved $100's by finding a last minute ecoupon for stuff.
Make Your Own Cleaners
This is another one of my favorite ways to save money. I love making my own cleaners because I know what goes into them. I can easily save $100's every year by making my own cleaners. If you are just getting started this granite cleaner is my absolute favorite. You can see all of my homemade cleaners here.
With just a little bit of work each week you can save money that adds up to hundreds each month. What easy things do you do to save every month?