Saving money does not have to be rocket science. The whole thing has always been made to appear like the most challenging and life-altering thing anyone has to do.
While it is true that some tips for saving money can involve significant life changes, it does always have to be this way.
There are many simple, creative and fun ways to save money you can embrace. When something is difficult, you need to ditch the complex path and embrace the simple ways.
Making small baby steps fun and exciting will help you progress, and this is what this article helps you achieve in terms of saving money.
Keep reading for some creative ways to help you save money without much struggle.
1. Embrace the 30-Day Rule
The 30-day rule is one of the best ways to stop making impulse purchases.
If you want to buy something non-essential, take 30 days to think it over. This 30-day rule will help you avoid getting items you do not need and at very inflated prices.
If, after 30 days, you still want the item and have disposable money to get it, then you could proceed and order for it.
However, in many cases, the 30 days will help you realize that you do not need the item. This way, you will get to save the money and put it towards something essential.
2. Swap Streaming Services With Friends
You have no business paying for more than 2 streaming services every other month. According to a Forbes Home survey, 47% of paid streaming services go unused every other month. And more than 50% of subscribers pay for streaming services just to watch a specific show.
It makes no much sense to pay for a month-long subscription to watch a single show. This is why you want to consider swapping the services with friends.
For instance, if you pay for HBO Max, and there is a new acclaimed show on Netflix, instead of getting Netflix to watch a single show, consider asking for a swap with your friend who uses Netflix. There are likely shows they would want to watch on HBO or the other streaming service you own.
This way, you can get to reduce a huge chunk of the $48 per month average that Americans pay for streaming services, according to Deloitte.
3. Host Clothing Swap Parties
Need a new wardrobe? Instead of buying new items every other month, you can host a clothing swap party with your friends, cousins, or colleagues.
This way, you can get that nice piece of clothing from someone else’s wardrobe without spending a penny.
It is even much better if you find like-minded attendees. For instance, you want to organize it with friends who are against fast fashion, those looking to save as much as possible, or those looking to participate in sustainability.
With attendees, you want to set rules and get a venue(preferably with private changing spaces, display spaces, and full-length mirrors). To make it much fun, you can have some music playing.
It, however, does not have to be among friends and family. You can organize your clothing swap, publicize it on social media, and invite more people.
It is a great way to declutter, acquire new items, and save money.
4. Grow Your Own Produce
With gardening being a lot of people’s hobbies, you can transform it into a money-saving venture. Instead of growing non-edible flowers and plants, you also want to add some fruits and vegetables to your garden.
It is not only a fulfilling thing to do. It can go a long way in saving you money. Besides, it is a great activity for parents to bond with their kids. One thing for sure is that your kids will enjoy seeing their cucumbers, watermelons, or whatever produce blossom, grow, and ripen.
With no resources such as a greenhouse, you want to research and grow vegetables and fruits that thrive naturally in your climate.
According to the Organic Gardener, families can save approximately $700 annually by growing their produce in a 4-foot by 8-foot garden.
You can maximize the savings by growing more produce in sacks, crates, and plastic containers.
5. DIY Household Cleaners
According to Statista, the average cost of detergents and cleaning supplies stood at $169.83 per consumer unit in 2022.
You can tremendously lower your average if you start making your household cleaners. The savings can go as high as 95% for every cleaning product you make at home, according to an article published on Home Management101.
But how effective are these homemade cleaning products? This is one of the biggest worries of people looking to stop getting commercial ones. An article on WebMD revealed that household cleaners containing natural products such as vinegar and tea tree oil are super-effective disinfectants.
6. Cancel Unused Subscriptions
A post published on Forbes revealed that nearly 50% of people pay for subscriptions they never or rarely use.
While it may essentially involve streaming services, many people pay for gym memberships, online classes, and shopping and retailer memberships that they barely use.
You are wasting your money if you pay for subscriptions and hope to get the perfect chance to use them. Cancel them and get those you know you cannot do without.
You also want to go back to your bank statements, track the subscriptions that go unnoticed, and immediately cancel them. Many people get free trials, forget to cancel them on time, and end up paying for the service they have not used for months.
7. Practice No-spend Weekends
According to an article published on JPMorgan Chase’s website, consumers spend more on Fridays and Saturdays than on any other day of the week. The reason is quite evident because that is when many people go grocery shopping and go out to have fun and let loose.
What if you decided to have a no-spend weekend?
You could stay indoors and have indoor fun, use food in your fridge and pantry, and keep off retailers’ websites.
You undoubtedly have enough to take a few more days and weeks. Since weekends are when the most money is spent, having no-spend weekends means you stand a chance to save more than you can do on any other day of the week.
8. Explore Secondhand Shopping
You can save an incredible $1760 a year by embracing secondhand shopping. You do not need new and costly clothes when you can get good quality ones at only a fraction of the price.
Secondhand shopping goes beyond just clothes. You can get great baby items, books, kitchenware, decor, and furniture.
The secret of secondhand shopping is knowing where to get the items you need. If you are looking for great clothes, there will always be a store in your town with items you will like. Go around and discover thrift stores and what they offer. You will be surprised at how many treasures are waiting to be taken home.
9. Try the Envelope Budgeting System
The envelope budgeting system is a great way to track how well you are sticking to your budget.
You will start by creating a budget showing how much you spend on all expenses. You will then get an envelope for every varied expense, including food, fuel and car maintenance, self-care and beauty, entertainment, gifts, etc.
You will then stash the amount allocated to each in every envelope. So, whenever you want to pay for groceries, you will get the money from the groceries envelope. The same applies to every other varied expense you have.
At the end of the month, you will be able to see what envelope still has a good amount of money in it. You will also see which envelope’s money was exhausted earlier than expected.
With this information, you can adjust your budget and spending habits accordingly.
10. Carpool or Rideshare
Maintaining a car can be very expensive; if you are looking for simple ways to cut costs and save money, consider reducing your car usage.
You may want to consider carpooling with your friends and work colleagues. You can then share fuel and car maintenance costs.
If you cannot find a perfect carpooling arrangement in your circles, you may want to check out ridesharing apps in your city. Using such apps to move around will not only cut your transportation costs. They will help reduce your carbon footprint, which is excellent for anyone looking to put more towards sustainability.
11. Negotiate Bills and Expenses
You saving more money could only be one phone call away. Whether it is medical bills, rent, phone and internet bills, or cable TV, many providers are willing to negotiate and give their clients discounts or cheaper packages.
Your chances of getting a discount are even higher when you ask for it towards the end of their service agreement.
They may give you better prices to keep you from changing service providers.
Get some facts right, know competitors’ charges, and make that phone call today. You could have that bill slashed by a considerable amount.
12. Participate in Online Surveys and Cashback Programs
Online surveys are a great and very simple way to earn some money. While it may not earn you money to live off of entirely, it can get you some bucks to cover your small expenses.
Most online survey companies pay between $0.5 and $5 per survey.
While the pay varies greatly depending on many factors, ZipRecruiter revealed that the average online survey takers can make weekly wages of as high as $1635.
Other than online surveys, you want to register on cashback apps such as Rakuten and Ibotta. These apps will give back a tiny percentage of the money you spend shopping via their site or in-store. Again, you may not earn a living from this, but it can certainly give you back something to cover your small expenses.
13. Make Homemade Gifts
A NerdWallet survey revealed that people spent an average of $823 for gifts in the holiday season of 2022.
If you are a creative person, you can reduce this cost by making your loved ones handmade gifts. In fact, it is much easier to personalize handmade gifts to suit your loved one’s tastes and preferences.
Some ideas for homemade gifts include crochet pieces such as beanies and sweaters, fleece blankets, paintings, candles, bath bombs, floor mats, leather products such as phone holders, string art decor, etc.
14. Adopt a Minimalist Lifestyle
A less is more lifestyle will save you from buying everything that catches your eye or is trending on social media.
Start by decluttering what you do not need and sell. You can then put the money towards debt repayment, emergency funds, retirement, or daily expenses such as groceries and fuel.
Secondly, you want to start choosing quality over quantity. For instance, get quality clothes; you will not have to keep buying cheap clothes every other season. Getting quality may mean more money upfront but will save you the extra expenses of doing so many replacements.
A minimalist life is about getting the items you cannot do without and eliminating what you do not need. You will not only save money while at it. You will create a stress-free life living with less clutter.
15. Barter or Trade Skills and Services
Bartering or trading skills is not only a great way to save money; it helps create a stronger community in your circles.
For example, if you’re a graphic designer, you can offer your services to your accountant friend’s business and get their accounting services back in exchange.
It goes beyond complicated and professional tasks to simpler and daily tasks such as gardening, house cleaning, repairs, language lessons, nannying, and even mowing the lawn.
It is a win-win scenario that you can easily organize with your friends and family; everybody gets a well-done service from someone who does it better and saves money while at it.
Creative Ways to Save Money
Embracing these creative ways to save money can help you make a substantial difference in your financial well-being. These tips will help you save money and progress toward your desired financially secure life. Besides, they will come in handy in helping you appreciate a minimalist and sustainable lifestyle, which is not only good for the environment but also your mental well-being.
Incorporate these ways to save money and make small but sure steps toward your long-term goals.
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This article was produced and syndicated by A Dime Saved.