It’s only recently — within the past year or so, that I’ve really decided to buckle down and start saving my money. I should have started along time ago (mom and dad, you were right), but I’m here now and doing what I can every day to set a little bit more aside.
As someone who was spending an excessive amount on clothes, food, booze, etc., I had a lot of opportunity to cut back. I realize not everyone has the opportunity to cut back on expenses because they’re all essentials, but don’t quit on me yet. There are all kinds of things you may not even realize you can do to save money on a daily basis. One of the major things I did was re-arrange my closet and go through literally every single item of clothing I have. I found all these clothes I didn’t even know I had. And what’s worse is that I’ve been buying super similar items all this time. Shopping addiction? Maybe. But, since most of you probably (hopefully) don’t have the shopping problem I do, here’s a list of all the other ways you can save money.
50 Ways To Save Money Right Now
1. Turn your heat down/AC up a few degrees.
2. Drink tap water instead of that La Croix. Painful, I know.
3. Bring your own lunch to school and/or work.
4. Make your own coffee in the morning.
5. Cut out or cut back on alcohol. I didn’t realize how much money I was spending at bars until I started checking my statements the next day. Spoiler alert: it was way too much.
6. Sell some of your clothes at a consignment shop or on on a site like Thredup, eBay, or Poshmark. Donating them is nice, but some of your items might be worth more than you think.
7. Use coupons, especially online. Never buy something without Googling a promo code.
8. Return anything you buy that you don’t absolutely love. A product, clothes, something at the grocery store. A lot of places have good return policies when you’re not happy with something. This way, you get your money back instead of just throwing something out or donating it months later with the tags still on. I learned this lesson 26 years too late.
9. Buy store brand items. They’re basically the same thing anyway – check the ingredients label if you don’t believe me.
10. Designate a few days a week as “no spend days”.
11. Have your friends over and make dinner together instead of going out to eat.
12. Pay down your debt to eliminate or reduce interest.
13. Set up a savings account with a percentage of each paycheck automatically deposited.
14. Unsubscribe to emails that send tempting promo deals and sales.
15. Eat before you go to grocery shopping.
16. Pay in cash. It’s much more alarming how much you’re spending when you have physical dollars in your hand.
17. Cancel TV network subscriptions and cable you don’t use.
18. Get a side job a few hours a week and put all the money you make in to a savings account.
19. Wait 24-48 hours before you purchase an item. You might not want it after you sleep on it.
20. Make someone a personalized gift instead of buying them one.
21. Choose water instead of juice, soda, or alcohol.
22. Make a budget that works with your income and expenses so you’ll actually stick to it. You can’t save 50% of your paycheck if your rent and expenses are more than 50%.
23. Get free financial advice online. Have you heard of Google?
24. Check your bank statements regularly to see where you can cut costs.
25. Buy items used or on sale.
26. Search for generic prescriptions or buy them online from another pharmacy.
27. Set monthly, quarterly, and yearly savings goals.
28. Budget your food expenses for a week and plan all your meals ahead of time.
29. Walk or bike to work or to the store.
30. Keep all your spare change in a jar and don’t touch it until it adds up.
31. Drive less.
32. Learn how to fix household items or electronics yourself. Again, GOOGLE. You can literally Google anything.
33. Make a list to go shopping and stick to it.
34. Get books at the library or free e-books instead of buying them.
35. Leave your credit cards at home when you go out. I learned this the hard way after too many nights at the bar where I’m a few drinks in and decide it’s a good idea to buy everyone shots.
36. Take free online classes and seminars to boost your value at work and potential for a raise.
37. Make your own cleaning supplies.
38. Buy items off season. For example, Halloween items in the spring or Christmas decor in summer.
39. Switch banks if you can get lower interest.
40. Start a 401k. You will save when it comes to your taxable income and if your employer matches, that’s basically free money.
41. Try being a vegetarian for 30 days. Meat can be expensive.
42. Buy local and at farmer’s market.
43. Negotiate prices when appropriate.
44. Learn to re-invent your leftovers instead of throwing them out and ordering out again.
45. Invest in a slow cooker. Those meals can go a long way.
46. Eat at home more in general.
47. Wait until movies are free on demand instead of seeing them in theaters or renting one.
48. Take public transportation when available.
49. Cancel memberships you don’t use or can go without.
50. Turn off lights you’re not using.