Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Thirty days of savings

  Chances are that everyone could use a little extra money these days. But how can you save money you don't have? The answer is, start by saving on what you already own. Want a new sweater but can't afford it? Want to go out to dinner but don't think you can't afford it. I am here to help! I am going to post and follow: 30 days of savings.

Savings Day 1
 Recycle Clothing

  Instead of throwing out damaged or old clothing you no longer wear, revamp it. Don’t toss out a shirt because of a broken button , sew a new one on. Don’t toss out pants because of a hole in them – patch them or create a skirt or purse. Just about anyone can sew, and if you can't, take it to a tailor for a couple dollars or ask a friend. You can find an assortment of buttons to bring a new shirt back to life. Several pins to add some color to an older purse or shirt.

 I found a very cute sweater dress on a used clothing site. I thought, hmmm, I might wear it. How many times do you pick something up because "you might wear it." I got it home and tried it on, and knew I wouldn't. But, It is so cute and it only cost $5. What If I turn it into a sweater? I am going to take the dress to the tailor and have it made today. I will post before and after pictures later.

Savings Day 2

Learn how to coupon!

  I cannot believe the amount of people I hear saying, "I don't have time", and "I can't do that." The truth is, anyone can coupon! My best advice is to find a coupon class in your area, the amount of classes are growing because so many people are now couponing.

  I went to a class last night, loved it! The teacher gives you all the information each week on the sale items and you just clip the coupons you need. I went to Kroger right after the class, and you wouldn't believe the savings. I usually go into the store with 6 or 7 coupons, I had a whole envelope this time. I watched as the lady was ringing everything else hoping that my total would go down because I didn't have enough money. My total got up to $323, after coupons, I paid $140. I saved about $187, my biggest savings to date.

You do usually pay for these classes, I paid $40. But, I made All my money back the same night! You should see everything I got. And one other great thing is, for every 5 people you refer, you get a free month on the website, a $15 value. If anyone is interested, I will post the name of the class and the teacher for you.
Savings Day 3
Sign up for reward cards

  Alot of stores are going with the store rewards cards now. All you have to do is shop and give them your rewards card after they ring you up. They may often send you coupons based on you shopping status as well. The more you shop, the more you earn and save. Be sure to look for details at the stores, and don't be afraid to ask! And, if the store asks for an email, give it to them! I work in retail and can tell you, you can miss out of some great coupons if you don't!

Savings Day 4

Do it yourself

 Don't pay someone else to do what you can do yourself. I have stopped paying $100's of dollars to get my hair done. Now, I will color my own hair and only pay $12 for the cut. Invest in a great flat iron, curling iron and cute hair accessories. Next, do your own pedi or manicure, or have a friend help. Gather some supplies and smell good product and have a girls day. Practice doing each others nails and hair. And, you may even have enough money to go out and have lunch.

 Savings day 5

Stock your pantry

 Do not plan your meals around what is on sale this week.  Plan your meals with what is in your pantry. Stock up your pantry, and only get what you are out of at the store. If you plan you meals around what is on sale, you may miss some great deals and spend money you don't have to. If you are going to plan meals, stock up and plan around your stocked pantry. Get items when they are on sale, only if you need them or if they are pretty much fee at the store.

Savings day 6

Compare prices

 Find out your stores price match policy.  Alot of stores offer price match, just ask! Today Jeff and I saved over $40 at best buy. You would be surprised how much you could save by simply asking a simple question. And, If they don't have the item, ask when they will have the item in and if they can put you on a waiting list.

Savings day 7

Go shopping

  You can get some really nice clothes at half the price. Look for local Goodwill's in your area or the salvation army. Sometimes, you can find clothing that still have the tag on them. You could build a whole wardrobe here for little to nothing. Find pieces that mix well and if you love something and it just isn't the right fit for you, have it tailored.  And, look for second hand resale stores too, sometimes you can sell the clothes you no longer want and get credit towards new clothing.

  Savings day 8

  Grow your own
  Plant a garden. Ever notice how the produce prices in the stores are just getting higher and higher? I went to the grocery store and bought 4 tomatoes, they cost almost 4!  I went to eBay and purchased seeds for lettuce, tomatoes, cucumbers, and bell peppers. You can do this cheap too. Just cut the tops off of your milk cartons, and use them as planters. The rest of the supplies, go to family dollar. Read online how to make your own pesticides.

  Savings day 9

 Nickeled and dimed
 Going on a trip? Take your own food. I cannot stress this enough. We just got back from a indoor water park, where we were nickeled and dimed for everything. I though I packed everything we needed, but the first night there, we had to make a trip to Meijer. The restaurants, and vending machines in the hotel were outrageous. So, If you are going on a trip, pack everything beforehand, using a detailed list of what you'll need. If you cannot pack everything, make sure to take a cooler so you can visit a grocery store near your vacation spot.

  Savings day 10

 Brown bag it

 Ever find yourself heading to the drive threw for lunch? I have found myself doing this one to many times. You would be surprised how much money you could save doing this. With all stuff in my cupboards from couponing, I could probably brown bag it for six months. Imagine the savings. And to reward yourself for the savings, do a family night out instead. Be sure to look for coupons at your favorite restaurants for extra savings!

   Savings day 11

 Avoid Vending machines snacks

 Almost everything in the vending machine is overpriced. I am a college student and sometimes I get the urge for a snack. But, I have stopped that habit because I realized how much I could be saving. Keep a bag in your back pack or car, pretzels are a good choice. You could have 2 or 3 snacks for the price you would pay at the vending machine!

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