Thursday, July 15, 2010

5 Ways to Start Saving Money Now

piggy bank

I have been big on saving money this year and through some trial and error, these are the 5 best ways I have found to start seeing a meaningful increase in the amount of money you are able to save. These are all basic, no fuss, no muss methods. Nothing fancy, just common sense.

Drumroll please...

#1. Cut down on your credit card usage, way down. If you don't have the cash on hand to buy something, then don't. Use only one credit card every month and make sure to pay it off every month. This way you eliminate having to pay interest on purchases. If you are able to cut out credit cards altogether and function on a cash or debit/check card basis, all the better.

#2. If you shop online, sign up with cashback shopping sites like Ebates. You will receive a percentage back every time you shop and they are free to join. Pair that with sales and special coupon codes to maximize your savings.

#3. Clip coupons! I know, it can be time consuming but it is well worth that time. Read up on how to pair store and manufacturer coupons and then pair them with drugstore reward programs like Walgreens Register Rewards and CVS Extra Care Bucks to capitalize on your efforts. Download the Free Couponizers Smart Guide to Savings Ebook, it will teach you all about coupons.

#4. When planning a major purchase, like let's say a refrigerator, do your research. Don't settle on the first one you see at the home improvement store. Try the electronics stores or the warehouse stores, sometimes they will have better deals and different options as far as models go. Don't discount shopping on the store websites either because some stores often run online only specials, Best Buy comes to mind. Also research the brands, try to see which companies have the best reputation for refrigerators. Since appliances don't seem to last as long these days, you need all the help you can get when trying to find a good one.

#5. Buy only what you need. I know this should go without saying, but we all cave on this one. All it takes is one half yearly sale when the shoes you have been drooling over are miraculously 50% off and are calling out to you like a lost child looking for its mother. This is when will-power must take over! Resistance is not futile ladies, and your pocketbook will thank you.

So, in a nutshell, cut out credit cards, try cash back shopping,  clip coupons, do your research and resist impulse buying and you'll be on your way to saving and keeping more of your hard earned money!

*affiliate links included in this post




Coupon Teacher said...

All excellent suggestion, but easier said than done for me. Thanks for linking up!

Georgia said...

Great idea!!!!!!!!!!!!

Xenia said...

Great tips! I don't know why I've never signed up with a site like Ebates, I'll have to look into that - thanks! :)

aquariann said...

Great tips! I rarely use cash, though - redeeming credit card points for gift cards to Chili's and Red Lobsta is such a nice treat.

Mellisa Rock said...

Great list - but with my credit cards I almost the entire balance...leaving a tiny sum to be recorded. I have been doing this for almost a year and my credit score has slowly but surely been rising. Loving the #31DBBB challenge so far! Have a great week!

Sandy Grason said...

faaabulous list!
I just saw your tweet on #31DBBB here's my first list post, (kinda the opposite of saving money though, it's about buying shoes!)

Serene - said...

I feel so proud of myself and my partner: we already do these things. Rock on. Good post!

Melissa said...

Thank you! Thanks for stopping, by off to visit everyone's blogs! :)

Patty Reiser said...

These are all great ideas. If I might add to #2 - MyPoints is another great source for online shopping and saving. You earn points for reading emails and your online shopping. Those points can then be turned in for Gift Cards. I rack up my points throughout the year and then in November I cash them in for Gift Cards to supplement my xmas shopping or to give away as gifts.

Celebrate Life and Capture It!

Melissa said...

Thanks Patty! I forgot about mypoints, I have an account too! lol ;)

Christine (iDreamofClean) said...

Great list! I'd add, Make a Budget! Knowing that I only have $X amount left to spend really helps me cut down!