Thursday’s thirteen: how to save money.


In these hard economic times it nice to know that there are ways to save money. Some of my advice is probably stuff you already know, but I hope some of it will surprise or encourage you to figure out ways to save on your household budget.
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1. Shop at dollar tree. This is what I do, but I leave hubby behind. He gets in there and he’s over whelmed. “Look at this and it’s only a dollar.” Yes dear, I know. Take deep breaths and calm down. He comes and the bill goes from $20-40 dollars to $80-90 dollars. Yeah, leave hubby at home and save $40 dollars.
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2. Buy an economical car. If you’re paying bukoo bucks at the tank, to fill your oversized tank it’s time to down size. We traded in our Cad for a Camry. Savings at fill-up was about half what it cost to fill-up the old car with premium unleaded. And the Camry uses regular. Another plus when the Cadillac broke down it usually cost us @ $400 to fix the darn thing. The Camry we still don’t know, we’re been driving with the “service soon” light on for four or five months now.

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3. Dump the gas powered mower and get electric. I did. Its lighter and no annoying trips to the gas station, and no argument with hubby about who got that smelly job. Cost: Priceless.
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4. Hire the neighbor kid to mow. The advantage here is you’re saving not only a trip to the gas station, but using the kid’s parent’s gas.
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5. Experiment with off brands, you might find one you like. I’m a diehard Producers customer for all my dairy products, but found Lucerne taste exactly the same and cost about a dollar or so less. That’s a dollar that I can spend at dollar tree, lol.
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6. Recycle. This should go without saying, but so many people ignore the obvious so I’ll spell it out in dollar signs. Cha-ching $$. Recycling helps the environment and puts money in your pocket. Yes it does. Have you ever taken in your recyclables to sell? You get paid to recycle, isn’t that fabulous? More dollar for dollar tree.
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7. Buy second hand clothes. I shop Salvation Army mostly, but don’t ignore the smaller places. I sometimes find stuff with the original tags still on them. That’s brand new never worn clothes a third to a quarter of the original cost. Mostly I get jeans for four to eight dollars, and that same pair at a department store can cost up to thirty and forty dollars, that’s up to a thirty dollar savings right there. You think your teen won’t go for it? I’ve taught my teenage daughter to shop at thrift stores, and she’s proud of the clothes she gets that doesn’t look like everyone else’s.
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8. Shop at Wal-mart. I know a lot of people do, but some still don’t. Yes, the customer service sucks and the lines are long, but you save money when you go there.
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9. Use coupons. I stopped a while back because when I got around to using them they were expired. But I found coupons in the flyers that come free to my house for some local restaurants, and they’re good for a couple of months. A coupon that pays for one full meal is worth its weight in gold. Well, its paper it isn’t going to weight much.
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10. Learn to cook bulk rice. San Francisco treat or not, pound for pound white or brown rice is cheaper than rice-a-ronie. If you want more flavor drop in a bullion cube.
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11. Join the shopping clubs. They are popping up everywhere, and I don’t mean Costco and Sam’s club. Though I heard you can save a lot of money, but you have to buy in to be a member. Sorry but I’m cheap. I mean the free ones, the ones that cost you nothing to join. I’m a proud member of Safeway, Office depot, Petco, Boarders and longs drugs.
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12. Say no to pets. I know Fido and fluffy are adorable and you can’t live without them, but how many pets do you really need? How about thinning the herd? Or how about downsizing your pets. Smaller dogs eat less, a lot less. I use to have a Cocker spaniel it took her a month or longer to eat a fifty pound bag of dog food. Small breeds eat less than that. Cats are cheaper to keep especially if they are outside, they can catch their own food.
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13. Say no to exotic pets. Yes, they are interesting, but they can cost you with frequent runs to the pet store for their equally exotic tastes in food. Exotic also mean delicate as in if they sneeze they die, and there goes the wad you just spend on buying and feeding them. And what are you going to do with fifty live crickets or whatever? Release them into the neighborhood? Yeah, your neighbors are going to love you.
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How do you save money? Do you have any tricks you’d like to share?
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10 comments on “Thursday’s thirteen: how to save money.

  1. I find writing a list before hitting the grocery store helps and also buying plain brands. Often they taste the same and are made in the same factory as the name brands. Buy stuff that’s on special. Buy fruit and vegetables that are in season rather than the exotic imported stuff. Start a vegetable garden and grow your own.

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    • Good idea, list are always a great way not to spend too much. I also garden and have a lot of tomatoes but there late this year.

      Happy TT.

      Janice~

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    • Hi Jen,

      Yeah, it is true sadly, I save a lot leaving my hubby at home and take the daughter instead.

      Happy TT.

      Janice~

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  2. Personally, our Dollar Tree sucks, but I always make out a grocery list and check for any coupons I might have. Making a list not only means you are less likely to forget stuff, but also less likely to impulse buy. Taking the bus, or limiting purchases so that they fit in a certain number of shopping bags also helps, as that means you can only buy what you can carry.

    Don’t forget used book stores as opposed to the big chains. While we all want the newest releases, sometimes we have to make a list of titles we want and watch for them to appear at the local UBS. Or, if you have a (decent) library close by, try borrowing for a while instead of buying.

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    • Hi Heather,

      That’s a lot of great advice there. Our Dollar tree did suck until it moved to a bigger store now they have a lot more stuff. We don’t have a bus service here and I have a car, so that doesn’t work for me but it might for others. List are always good.

      I use to go to the library but our library sucks, it too small to have much in my small town, but still borrowing is always a good thing.

      Happy TT.
      Janice~

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