Helpful Tips to Stretch Your Budget
You have a good job and work hard at taking care of your family. And, yet at the end of the month, there’s nothing left in your budget to spend on fun things. The good news is that there are literally dozens of ways to either free up money or bring in extra money so that you can experience a comfortable life.
Eliminating the Waste
Every household budget has areas of weakness where you spend money unnecessarily. For example, if you like to dine out often, cut it back to once a month or if you buy lunch at work daily, reduce it to once a week. At home, be conscious of the lights, and get in the habit of turning them off when leaving a room. The same goes for your water usage. If you have many people who use the shower, change the shower head to an energy-efficient one and instate timed sessions and when you brush your teeth turn the water while brushing and use it just for rinsing. You should also run your washer and dishwasher only when you have a full load, and to save even more money, use your appliances during off hours, generally after 8:00 P.M.
Most people accept their bills and don’t ever challenge that maybe the rates are more than they need to pay. In recent years with the deregulation of gas and electric, you now have the ability to change utility companies. A few dollars here and there can really add up. The same applies to your cable service and your cell phone company.
Use the competition as a way to save money. For instance, if you like the company you currently use, but you recently discovered that their rates are not the best, contact them and explain that you don’t want to leave; however, you need to pay less.
In many cases, especially if you have had service with a company for several years, they will want to accommodate you. When it comes to your homeowner’s auto and motorcycle insurance rates, bundling the services with one company can help you reduce your annual premium by up to 15 to 20 percent.
Get More For Less
Food shopping can really take a bite out of your monthly budget. Thankfully, there are ways to reduce the cost without sacrifice. Most people live in areas where there are multiple grocery stores. Make your shopping list and then take a look at their weekly flyers to see what’s on sale.
Unbelievably, stores don’t always have the same items on sale, and by shopping at several stores you can trim off $20 or $30 a week in savings. Along with the sale price, go online to one of the many free sites that provide coupons and use them as well to save even more money. You can use this method for buying a new television or garden supplies too.
Use Your Talents to Make Money
Another way to enjoy a comfortable lifestyle is to use your talents to bring in additional money. For instance, if people comment on the photos you take or the crafts you make, sell them for a profit. If you enjoy writing as a sideline, there are many companies, small and large, that will pay you to write articles for them.
Spring cleaning can help you turn a profit quickly, especially if you have lived in the same place for many years. Go through acquired items in your attic and basement and have a yard sale or post them online.
Making the most of each dollar earned, using your talents for profit and selling off items you no longer want, can all help you to achieve a comfortable lifestyle.
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