So many of us homeowners are always trying to find thrifty and creative ways to save money on everything from our usual bills, to things we love around the home, food expenses, and more, without sacrificing our comfort or enjoyment. It sounds impossible, but the truth is, there are plenty of ways to save money, live frugally and enjoy incentives and discounts on all sorts of things while still getting great value and living life to the fullest. It’s just a matter of brushing up on all the ways you can save money and implementing a few changes here and there. To get started, here’s a few easy money-saving hacks you can try to save some serious cash around the house.
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We’ve all heard the term “bundling” - every utility, entertainment and insurance company we do business with has offered us a plan over the years. But it’s time to stop deleting those email advertisements and throwing away those flyers, because bundling actually can save you a lot of money in monthly bills.
It just makes sense. You pay for both TV and internet, so why not bundle your plans? Wifi and your cell phone bill? Bundle them! You’ll save so much money and often receive higher speeds/more data as an incentive for signing up for a bundle plan. Home and auto insurance? Why not bundle them into one plan that saves you money and offers you extra protections, higher liability and only one deductible? Not only will that save you serious green, but it’s a much more failsafe and responsible way to handle your insurance policy.
Bundling extends to more than just utilities/necessities, too. These days, many streaming services are offering bundles, too, such as Hulu, Spotify, and other tv and music streaming services. If you pay for quite a few different apps and channels, why not look into bundling a few and saving some money?
Eco-Friendly and “Smart”
If you’ve been thinking about replacing an appliance or updating your heating and air system or water heater, consider upgrading to a “smart” appliance. While many balk at the seemingly high price of these cutting edge, innovative appliances, the truth is that these will save you tons of money in the long run, in several different ways.
For starters, many utility companies such as your local power company, likely offer incentives for upgrading a smart thermostat or HVAC unit. These rebates can be up to hundreds of dollars. Some even offer free install or maintenance as an incentive, too. Smart appliances also save you lots of money on your monthly bills, as they run more efficiently and use less energy/water than other types of older appliances. This means they’re not only saving you money, but they’re good for the environment, too, which gives you peace of mind.
So before you sniff at the sticker price, do a little quick math and think of how much money you’ll save in the long run.
Thrifty and Repurposed
Many savvy and smart homeowners have been perusing thrift stores and buying second-hand and gently used items since long before it was trendy. But as more and more people catch on to this clever method, you’ll see more and more secondhand, hand-me-down and “retro” or “vintage” shops cropping up all over the place and it’s to all of our benefit.
Buying gently used or antique items is a great way to repurpose something that someone else no longer found useful, and it really saves you a ton of money. If you’re looking to remodel or upgrade a room and can’t bear to spend a fortune on brand new furniture, art or accessories, look in these second hand stores for great finds that are often amazing deals. There are also tons of other options, such as online stores and apps, the Facebook marketplace, Craigslist, and more. Then there’s always the old standby flea markets and yard sales, too! With a little experience and know-how you can become an expert at second hand shopping and find some really amazing deals for incredible stuff. All while saving major cash.
If you’re looking to make a little money in addition to saving it, why not sell a few items using these same methods? If you’ve got a bunch of items collecting dust in the garage or basement that you have no use for, why not sell them to someone who does? Selling gently used appliances, furniture etc via a yard sale, second hand consignment shop or other avenue is a great way to make extra cash while helping out someone else who needs it.
Not all subscriptions are created equal. When it comes to food subscription services and meal kits, some are more flash than substance, and often you’re paying top dollar for what amounts to not a lot of food. You’re paying more for an “experience” than you are actual quantity.
That being said, there are plenty of great subscription kits out there, if you know what to look for. Many local businesses, such as farms, organic co-ops and local food stores, offer great subscription boxes that are filled to the brim with local vegetables, fruits, baked goods, homemade condiments, bath and beauty products, and so much more. Often these prices are beyond affordable for the amount of goods you are getting, and they are all local, seasonal, and most of the time, organic.
For those who are looking to buy smart, while also saving money on food costs, these are a great option. Many local subscriptions even offer the option to go in halves with a friend or neighbor, or to pick and choose add ons or substitutions. It’s totally customizable and you’ll be saving lots of cash while helping out a local business (and eating healthier, too).
These types of subscription services aren’t just for food, either. A quick search will show you all sorts of cool subscription boxes and kits that can save you cash on everything from natural products and supplements, cleaning supplies, pet supplies, baby products, health and beauty products, and so much more, much of it very affordable and totally convenient.
Grow and Make Your Own
You don’t have to be a legit farmer to grow some great produce for your family. Many people these days have small patches of land devoted to a few tomatoes and peppers, a lovely fruit tree, or an easy to maintain herb garden. Just growing one or two plants can save you more money than you’d think at the grocery store every month, and the benefits of fresh produce speak for themselves. Delicious, healthy and satisfying.
Many enterprising and creative folks are also finding that they can save a lot of money on household items by making them! Rather than spending a hundred bucks a month on expensive laundry detergent or beauty products, invest in some staple ingredients like Borax, baking soda and essential oils and make your own. Stock up on glycerine and Vitamin D oil to make your own soap, or play around with making your own hand sanitizer, avoiding pesky price markups. Most household cleaning products and health/beauty products are easy and cheap to make with just a few simple ingredients. Best of all, you’re controlling what ingredients and fragrances go into your products, avoiding the use of harsh and potentially toxic chemicals, and creating something that will feel and smell amazing, that you can feel good about using.
Cutting Down on Utilities
Cutting down on the amount of power and water you use is good for more than just your wallet. It helps the environment, too. While investing in “smart” appliances, as mentioned above, is one of the best ways to save money and conserve precious resources, for those of us who can’t afford an upgrade, there are still ways to conserve and save money. It’s as simple as being mindful to turn off lights when you leave a room, to not leave fans, tvs and radios running 24/7, to take shorter showers and be mindful of not leaving water running needlessly, etc. Going a step further and collecting water in a barrel or even investing in a residential water tank can also make a huge difference, especially if you use a lot of water for a farm or large garden. Simple steps to conserve energy and water can save you lots on your bill and make such a big difference for the planet, too.
These are just a few quick tips on how to save money on your monthly bills, utilities, food costs, entertainment and more. There are so many other cool ideas on how to be frugal and thrifty without sacrificing a moment of enjoyment in your everyday life. Saving money doesn't have to be a chore. It’s very easy if you have the savvy and know-how to live in a thrifty and mindful way. It’ll become second nature as you learn easy ways to cut down on costs in every aspect of life.
CANDY TAI is a wife to David and mom of 5 with a degree in Communications. She's a native Texan (Hook 'Em Horns!) who's been making her home in the Kansas City metro area for nearly 15 years. She loves being able to shuffle her kids from their various sports activities, piano lessons, and school activities. She enjoys fashion, beauty, reality TV, and moviegoing.