Make a difference in your life by choosing to focus on your finances! We've got over 50 ways to save money that will have you reaching your goals and dreams in no time. Live the frugal life and never look back!
Have you realized that your dreams could become a reality with just a little bit of focus and determination? It's time to reach your financial goals. Start working on them today and you be surprised at how quickly you can hit them once you're really zoned in on the prize!
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We've rounded up the best ways to save money that will have you reaching your goals in no time. Some are so simple, you can do them without thinking twice about it. Others will take a little more work but they'll be that much more effective! Get ready to start living the life of your dreams.
LOOK FOR WAYS TO SAVE MONEY
When you're looking for ways to save money, there isn't ONE magic thing that will automatically save you buckets of cash. It's the slow and steady, simple conscious decisions – not accidental or impulsive ones – that lead us to incredible lives; being able to do more, have more, and live more than you ever thought possible (regardless of how much money you make).
Choose to live frugally, even when you don't have to! It's one of the best ways to save money on a consistent basis. Remember, it's the $1, $5 and $10 decisions that you make on a daily or weekly basis that really add up in the long run! Frugality isn't all about giving things up, rather it's to show us that we don't have to indulge ourselves in 100% of the things we want to buy all the time. It's okay to say no! Sometimes it's even pretty simple. Use these easy ways to save money and you'll be amazed at the results! You will reach $100 in no time and not even break a sweat.
WEEKLY CHALLENGES TO SAVE MONEY FAST
If you've been following along with our free yearly Focused In program, then these challenges will look familiar to you. They're some of our best ways to save money and help you focus on your finances, not just in January and October, but all the time!
USE THE ENVELOPE BUDGET SYSTEM
This is a great way to keep track of your grocery and “other” budgets! Save every receipt that you have from the month, such as groceries, restaurants, Target, hair cuts, or whatever else. Write them down on your envelopes and save the receipts to look over at the end of the month. It's a great way to know exactly how much you spent for the month and will show you where you can easily cut back on certain expenses that aren't necessary (Swig drinks, anybody?) so you can save more money.
CASH ONLY MONTH
If you're brave enough, go cash only! The best way to do this is to only get out how much you need a week at a time. It's a lot easier to keep up with a smaller amount of cash and you won't be so freaked out about losing it! The envelope budget method is still the best way to keep up with your totals.
This is the perfect way to keep you from spending any more money than you need to because when you run out, you're out! There's no temptation to blow your budget on an unexpected treat or pair of shoes. If you're really strict with your spending, you could even have some cash left over at the end of the month that you could put towards debt or in your savings account. Winning!
NO EATING OUT
Say no to eating out…of any kind. Coffee, drive-throughs, gas station drinks, lunch money for your kids, ordering a pizza, even bottled water…you name it. Basically anything you consume this week needs to come from your own house, or not at all!
For many of us, cooking can be hard. Trust us, we know. Sometimes you reach a point in your life where cooking is just one more job; one more annoying task at the end of an exhausting day that only leads to lots of “I don't like this” comments from the kids, and lots of dishes and messes.
The simple act of focusing on your FOOD is one of the largest factors that can pull you out of the hole you're digging and allow you to get ahead in life. Focus on making food and you'll stop wasting so much of your hard-earned money buying expensive food that you could've easily made at home for pennies on the dollar!
When you plan out your meals for the week, it's so. much. easier. on your life! This helps you know when to thaw your meat, when you need to use food that's about to go bad, and allows you to plan for those busy nights that you would otherwise grab takeout.
This goes hand in hand with meal planning! Inventory your freezer, fridge and pantry and use what you already have (aka shelf cook) your way through that. Plan your meals, focus on what you have, then supplement with items from the grocery store and you'll save a lot of money that way!
NO WASTING FOOD
This one is as simple as it sounds… Don't waste any food or drinks. Save it for later, share it with your family, bring any uneaten food home from a restaurant, or freeze your leftovers to eat later. This will help teach you better portion control and to make a conscious decision before you toss it in the trash. Leftovers aren't gross! Which brings us to our next challenge…
INSTITUTE A WEEKLY LEFTOVERS NIGHT
Stop tossing your leftovers!!! Seriously, you can save buckets of money by learning to love your leftovers. Whether you reheat them the proper way or repurpose them into something new, establish a weekly leftovers night. It'll save you from having to cook and will clean out your fridge at the same time. You're welcome! 😉
SWAP NAME BRAND FOR STORE BRAND PRODUCTS
Store brand items are so much cheaper than the name brand ones and are usually just as good. Try swapping out a few items at a time and see which ones are worth switching over to for good! It's one of the best ways to save money that won't make a bit of difference to you besides fattening your wallet!
DON'T SPEND A DIME ON DATES OR ACTIVITIES
Learn how to find fun things to do near you that are free and never get caught wasting a lot of money at the movies again! We've also got some fun, free out on the town date ideas and at home date ideas that you don't want to miss out on.
This is one of the best ways to save money in just a week's time! Don't spend a dime on anything that's not essential (such as your mortgage or utilities) and you'll rack up some major dinero.
SAY NO TO 3
This is a simple concept! Just say no to three things that you want to buy or would normally spend money on during the week. Skip, pass, say no, put it back. However you do it, just say no 3 times! (You can save even more by increasing the number of things you say no to. If 3 was easy, then go for 7!)
It could be as simple as putting back an item at the register at the grocery store, saying no to the cute shirt on clearance that you want but don't need, or finding an ingredient substitute for a recipe that you have at home rather than running to the store for the ingredient you're missing (…and walking out with $50 in other things…).
Try to push yourself! Get out of your comfort zone! Don't make it too easy! Saying “ok, I won't go to Disneyland this week” when you weren't even planning on Disneyland anyway…doesn't count. Sorry, Freebs.
BUDGET FOR THE HOLIDAYS
Come up with a holiday budget for each holiday that you go big on and start budgeting and saving for them at the beginning of the year. You'll be amazed at how much money you'll save when you actually budget for the holiday versus just going to the store and dropping some major dinero when it rolls around. We have some ah-mazing gift-giving hacks that can really help make a difference.
OTHER WAYS TO SAVE MONEY
Just because the challenges are over doesn't mean that you can't keep focusing on those goals and keep saving money! Here are over 40 more things you can do to save even more and put towards your financial goals.
BIG WAYS TO SAVE
Here are some of our biggest ways to save overall!
- Lower Your Utilities – Use these great tips to lower your heating, electric and water bills and watch those monthly expenses decrease.
- Stick to the F A C T s – Save money by following these tips!
- Money Saving Challenge – Try your hand at a daily, weekly or monthly money saving challenge and be amazed at how much you'll be able to save!
- Cancel Subscriptions – In order to save a lot of money quickly, go through all of your subscriptions and cancel anything that you don't need.
See? Those weren't so bad. You can do it!
EATING FOOD AT HOME
Food is such a major expense in the budget. Focus on doing these things at home and you'll see some big savings!
- Keep Kitchen Staples Stocked – Use the “buy one for now, two for later” philosophy (as long as it fits within the budget) and always have a good stock of kitchen staples on hand to pull from.
- Double and Freeze – Whatever you're making, double (or even triple) the recipe and freeze it for later. This will save you so much time and effort! Plus, it's the perfect way to have a homemade meal on those busy nights where you would otherwise grab something to go.
- Reuse Leftover Party Food – Don't let that party food go to waste! We've got lots of ways to reuse anything you could have leftover, from cake to sandwich trays and even that leftover soda that's on it's way to being flat.
- Reuse Old Holiday Candy – Chop it up for ice cream sundaes, add it to chocolate chip cookies, make Snickers Apple Salad, or use it as birthday party favors.
- Make Your Own Convenient Pouches – It's so easy to make your own baby food or applesauce pouches and sooooo much cheaper than buying it at the store! Reuse old baby food jars or use the washable food pouches to easily take them on the go or pack them in school lunch boxes.
If you were already doing those, then great! If not, start implementing them today into your daily habits.
SAVE ON FOOD WHEN YOU'RE OUT
Just because it's convenient doesn't mean it's a good idea! Use these tips to help save when you're out.
- Pack Food and Drink For When You're Out – This is one of the best ways to save money and will keep you from hitting up the drive through when hunger or thirst strikes. Have plenty of snacks and refillable water bottles for you and your family and you won't be tempted!
- Pack a Lunch – If you'll be out around lunch time, make sure you take a lunch with you! You can also save lots of money by brown bagging your lunch for work and sending your kids to school with one versus giving them lunch money… That can really add up!
- Make Copycat Drinks – Have a favorite drink that you love to get when you're out and about? Maybe one of those not-so-cheap drinks from Starbucks or a Swig Raspberry Dream. Make it at home versus getting them in the drive through! You'll be amazed at how much dinero you'll pocket.
- Save Money When You Have To Eat Out – Share a meal with your family or only eat half of your meal so you can have leftovers at home. You can also skip the drinks and only get water. If you're not a huge water fan, take water additives with you so you're not tempted to get a drink that tastes better to you.
- Look for Coupons – Those weekly “junk” ads are a great place to look before going out to eat at restaurant or fast food joint.
- Use Restaurant or Fast Food Apps – Have a favorite restaurant or food place that you always work into the budget? A lot of places have apps for your phone that help you save money and earn rewards after each visit.
Easy peasy lemon squeezy!
WAYS TO SAVE MONEY AT THE GROCERY STORE
No more allowing the grocery store to take all of your money! Start applying these to your grocery shopping and really see a difference in your budget.
- Budget Weekly – Quit budgeting monthly! Instead, start a weekly budget and be amazed at how much easier it is to keep up with.
- Grocery Shop Once Per Week – You'll be amazed at how much you'll save!
- Keep Your Grocery List on Your Phone – This keeps you from losing your list and having to go into the grocery store not knowing what you need and blowing your budget!
- Buy in Bulk – This will usually give you the best bang for your buck! We have some tried and true items that we'll always buy at Costco.
Not too bad, right?!
YOU CAN STILL DO FUN THINGS!
Yes, you can! Just because you're trying to reign in your spending doesn't mean that you have to cut out all the fun in your life. Change the way that you look at “having fun” and join us in living the frugal life! It's still just as fun but you can save so much money this way!
- Groupon – Use Groupon to find the best deals on food, entertainment and more!
- Have Get Togethers on the Cheap – You can have a party and still do it on a budget! We've got some cheap party food ideas that will wow you.
- Reuse Birthday Decor – Our favorite place to buy birthday decor is at the Dollar Tree. Keep it, reuse it and you'll be amazed at the savings, especially when you have a lot of birthdays to celebrate in a year!
- Go to the Library – Why buy books when you can check them out for free at the library? This is one of our favorite ways to save money on books and movies since you can easily go grab one from the library for free!
- Just Say No – We get it, you love hanging out with your friends and family! But at what cost? Don't ever feel bad to say no when people ask you to go out to an expensive restaurant. Instead, invite them over for desserts and game night. You'll have a blast and save so much money by doing so!
- Only Go to Places that are Free or You Have Memberships To
- Self Care on the Cheap – We all need a little “me” time, so treat yourself on a budget!
Seriously, there's no lack of fun here! 😉
SAVE THE MOST BY DOING THESE WHEN SHOPPING
Love to shop? Stick to these tips and save mucho dinero.
- Put Things Back – Only focus on what you NEED, not what you want or what is on sale. Shop with a list and only get what's on that list!
- Is it Worth It? – Ask yourself these 10 questions to determine if a purchase is worth it.
- 3-Month Rule – You can still buy the things you want! But stick to the 3-month rule and see why it's one of our tried and true ways to save money on those things.
- Only Use Gift Cards – Want to go shopping? Stick to using gift cards and be more cautious about what you buy so you can stretch it ever further!
- Buy Quality Items – When you buy something based off it's quality that will last a long time, then you won't have to worry about replacing it any time soon. It may be more money up front, but the longer it lasts, the cheaper it ends up being.
- Go Window Shopping – Sometimes you just need to get out of the house and walk around your favorite store, we get it! If this is you, leave your wallet in the car so you won't be tempted to buy anything you don't need.
You can still shop when you're trying to save, just be more purposeful about it!
MORE WAYS TO SAVE IN STORE
Don't forget to do these!
- Use Store Apps – Get rewarded for shopping! Use the apps for store discount or as a digital punch card.
- Return Impulse Buys
- Keep the “Junk Mail” Ads – You know those weekly “junk mail” ads for store coupons you get in the mail? Keep them! Organize them in an accordion folder, keep it in your car and you'll always have it handy if you visit a store you have an ad for.
- Ask for Price Adjustments – If you notice what's advertised is different than what it's ringing up, then bring that to their attention and ask for a price adjustment.
- Shop Your Closet – When you get the urge to go shopping for new clothes, shop your closet first! Use the hanger hack to organize your closet and remind you of the clothes you have but don't wear. Start wearing what you've got versus going and buying something new.
Aren't you loving these ways to save?!
SAVE MONEY WHEN SHOPPING ONLINE
Alright, all you online shoppers, this is for you!
- Rakuten – Use Rakuten when you shop online and get cash back for those things you need. Use that link and get $10 for the first $25 spent!
- Let Items Sit in Your Cart – Add items to your cart, then wait a week or 2 before purchasing. This allows you to cancel anything you don't end up needing. You'll also be alerted if any of the items in your cart get marked down!
- Thrift Shop Online – Love to thrift shop, but tired of not always having high quality items to choose from? Start thrift shopping online, it's one of the easiest ways to save money when you're on a budget but still like nice things!
Talk about the savings!
SAVE MONEY BY DOING IT YOURSELF
Why go out and pay for something when you don't absolutely have to? Use these tips to save some monay monay.
- Shop Your House – Before you go out and buy something new, shop your house for things to repurpose.
- Make Your Clothes Last – Do your laundry the unconventional way to help your clothes last longer. No more buying new clothes because your old ones shrunk or got worn in the washer!
- Skip the Carwash – Wash your car at home!
- Make it Yourself – You can make pretty much anything yourself with a little time and effort! From homemade cleaners to baby wipes, you can do it all.
It may sound a little intimidating, but you can do it! You may even find that you like doing it yourself!
BUDGET BOOT CAMP
Wanna know one of our best ways to save money? Become a Budget Boot Camper! It's a super fun online video program that helps you break down your finances. Working on your budget has never been more relatable!
Sounds pretty amazing, right? We're so sure that you'll love it, we even offer a 100% money-back guarantee if you don't save at least what you paid for the program. Plus, use the code FCFBLOG for 10% off. Seriously, you've got nothing to lose!
Alright, well there you have it! If that's not a mega post of easy ways to save money, then we don't know what is. 😉 What's your favorite way to save? Let us know in the comments!
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