Whether the economy is booming or breaking down to save money is a surefire way to get better control of your finances and create the future of your dreams.
It may sound like an exaggeration, but when you implement each of our 11 biggest ways to save money, you can save a staggering $ 3,155 per month!
This is an ideal savings scenario, assuming all 11 expense categories apply to you. But even if it’s only three or four, you can save hundreds of dollars a month. And as you do, there will be very real potential for hundreds of thousands of dollars to grow your wealth in the decades to come.
Interested? Check out our list of what to expect in this guide – we’ve put together over 85 strategies and tips in total.
As you work to save money and secure your financial future, check out our suggestions on how to make money and develop passive income strategies.
How to save money
Most people probably think that ways to save money are like dieting financially. That can certainly be the case, but it doesn’t have to be.
In order to find ways to save money, really workable strategies need to be implemented. This is easier when you set priorities.
We suggest the following:
Take inventory of your expenses. Before you find ways to save money, you need to know exactly where you are going to spend your money. This comes with the establishment of a budget, which we will cover in Strategy 10 below.
First, prioritize cutting back on the biggest expenses. You probably know the “80/20” rule. It is assumed that 80% of your progress will come from 20% of your activities. This also applies to saving money. When you cut the biggest costs, you get the biggest savings. That’s why we started our list with the 11 best ways to save money. Implement some of these, and saving money is probably easier than you think – and more automatic.
Then look for “easy wins”. In addition to looking for ways to save money with your biggest spending, there are often times you can make spending cuts by eliminating any purchases or services that you are unlikely to miss. This could include cutting subscriptions that you no longer need. It’s about cutting a number of expenses that can translate into significant savings.
Stack your savings. This is about automating your savings. That means you are looking for ways to save money permanently. You can do this by refinancing debt into lower interest rate loans, reducing insurance costs, or even investing your money smarter.
Short message: you can negotiate bills! It is often possible to negotiate lower costs for different services. Not everyone is happy with the negotiation process, especially with service providers whose staff is programmed to say “no”. Do not worry about it! There is an app called “Recoup” that handles the negotiations for you. They can help you cut the costs of banking, credit cards, and subscriptions from 1,000+ providers and 1 million merchants. All you have to do is connect your service providers to the app and Recoup gets to work. This makes the entire negotiation work easier for you.
The power of saving money
Saving money gives you a tax break.
A dollar saved is worth more than a dollar earned. Why? Since you’ve already paid tax on that dollar, it’s actually worth a dollar. This is a key reason why you can benefit from a solid savings strategy over the long term.
Saving money means saving money.
Once you find ways to save money (and watch your bank account grow) it becomes a habit. It is a mindset change that allows you to reevaluate certain practices and habits in your life to improve your future financial security.
Compounding works for small or large quantities.
As you cut your expenses, gradually channel your cash flow into savings and investments where it works for you.
Example: When you cut an expense by $ 100 a month, that’s $ 1,200, you can switch to an income-generating investment account. If you invest in a mix of stocks and bonds for over 30 years that averages 7% per year, you can grow your monthly savings from $ 100 to over $ 117,000!
That means you’ll save just $ 3.33 a day, which is a six-figure nest egg, over 30 years.
In the next section, we’ll show you not only the 11 greatest ways to save money, but also how you can grow your wealth over the next 30 years.
When you see the numbers, you will be motivated to implement at least some of these strategies.
The 11 Most Effective Strategies To Save Serious Money
While we’re listing over 85 super easy ways to save money in this article, we’ll start with the biggest and best ways to save money. Implementing these strategies will likely save you more money than the other 75+ combined.
Some of them are pretty radical and you may not be ready to take the plunge. But if you are serious about saving money – and especially if you plan to join the F.I.R.E. Exercise – You should seriously consider all or them.
After each of the top eleven ways to save money, we’ll consider the long-term investment effects of the money you can save. When you see how big those numbers can be, you have all the incentives you need to make at least some of these changes.
And maybe you’ll even make enough progress with these strategies that you don’t even have to implement the remaining 75+!
1. Don’t wait to retire to shrink your living area
This is one of the most popular strategies for reducing the cost of living in retirement, but it works just as well until then. After all, housing is usually the biggest expense most people have. A significant reduction can mean reducing or eliminating 15 or 20 other expenses.
Let’s round up the numbers and see why this is true.
Let’s say you currently live in a 5,000 square foot house that you bought for $ 500,000 on a $ 400,000 mortgage. For the sake of simplicity, we assume that both numbers are still valid now.
Assuming a rate of 3.50% on a 30 year loan, the mortgage payment is $ 1,796 per month. Assuming $ 800 per month for property taxes and $ 200 for homeowner insurance, your total monthly payment is $ 2,796.
However, let’s say your family of four could be very comfortable in a 3,000 square foot home that you can buy for $ 300,000.
With a 20% down payment ($ 60,000), you have a $ 240,000 mortgage. At 3.50% for a 30 year loan, the monthly payment is $ 1,077. Assuming $ 500 per month in property taxes and $ 100 for homeowner insurance, your total monthly payment is $ 1,677.
The monthly cost of the $ 300,000 home is $ 1,119 per month lower than the $ 500,000 home.
How it increases your wealth: That’s $ 13,428 a year. And we haven’t even considered the impact of the extra $ 40,000 you didn’t wager on the $ 300,000 house on your cash flow and future savings. Not even the lower costs for ancillary costs and maintenance costs that arise from living in a smaller house.
Now let’s get a little crazy. If you follow this strategy and invest the $ 13,428 in annual savings in an investment account that pays an average annual return of 7%, you will have $ 1,316,024 after 30 years.
What to do next: Understand the value of your home by using an online home valuation tool to start the selling and downsizing process.
2. Refinance your current mortgage
In the first strategy I recommended that you downsize your living conditions in order to achieve the greatest possible savings advantage. However, if you’d rather not take such a drastic step, you can still save a ton of money by refinancing your current mortgage.
It’s another passive strategy that can save you many thousands of dollars just by taking one simple step now that will save you money for years.
How it increases your wealth: Let’s say you took out a 30-year $ 300,000 mortgage at 4.5% two years ago. The current principal and interest portion of your home payment is $ 2,026 per month.
However, if you can refinance the same loan at the current interest rate, which is 3.50%, you can lower that payment to $ 1,796 per month.
That saves you $ 230 a month or $ 2,760 a year. Not only is it a welcome reduction in your monthly expenses, but it also has long-term investment potential.
If you invest that $ 2,760 each year in annual savings with an average return of 7%, you will save another $ 270,503 after 30 years.
Alternatively, you can apply the additional interest savings to your monthly payments and cut your mortgage by six years and ten months.
What to do next: Compare the interest rates of the best mortgage lenders and refinance your current mortgage today if you qualify.
3. Quit Smoking And Save Thousands On Health And Life Insurance – And Cigarettes
The cost of cigarettes alone makes it a rich source for saving money. Considering that cigarettes cost an average of $ 7.65 per pack in the US, according to the CDC, a one pack per day habit will get you back $ 2,792 per year.
And that is just the beginning. Smoking has a dramatic impact on health and life insurance costs.
Did you know that smoking increases your health insurance premium by 50% under the Affordable Care Act? If your employer-sponsored plan cost you $ 600 per month for your serving, it would only be about $ 400 if you were a non-smoker. That’s an additional cost of $ 200 per month or $ 2,400 per year.
The situation is even more dramatic in life insurance. The cost of 20 year life insurance for $ 500,000 for a 30 year old can be $ 20.88 per month for a non-smoker but $ 77 for a smoker. That’s a difference of more than $ 56 per month or $ 672 per year.
You can eliminate the cost of cigarettes by simply quitting. But you can also lower your life and health insurance premiums by participating in a smoking cessation program. When you do this, make sure that it has been approved by the insurance companies. Typically, you must have been on the program and be smoke-free for at least two years before taking a break from your rewards.
However, as you can see from the annual savings and future investment potential, it pays to quit smoking and join a smoking session program.
How it increases your wealth: If you add the three numbers together – $ 2,792 for cigarettes, plus $ 2,400 for the higher health insurance premium plus $ 672 for the higher life insurance premium – the total cost of a smoking habit is $ 5,864 per year.
This is almost enough to fully fund an IRA contribution each year for the next 30 years. If that money were contributed to an IRA – rather than a cigarette habit – it would grow to more than $ 574,700 in 30 years, which is an average annual return of 7%.
What to do next: Check with your life and health insurance company about an approved smoking cessation program and quit today.
4. Open an HSA
We’re definitely targeting healthcare costs, and for good reason. If housing is the highest cost in most households, health care, including health insurance, ranks second.
Aside from quitting smoking, there isn’t much you can do to lower your health insurance premiums. Because so many health insurance plans also add expense costs, these become very significant secondary health care costs.
Probably the best way to deal with high expenses is to open a Health Savings Account (HSA). For 2020, you can contribute up to $ 3,550 to a plan if you are single and $ 7,100 for a family.
HSAs have four main advantages:
- Your contributions to the plan are tax deductible, much like an IRA contribution.
- You can pay out of pocket medical expenses from your account without having to include those expenses on your tax return (which most people don’t qualify for anyway).
- With an HSA, you can effectively budget out of pocket medical costs, which can often cost thousands of dollars at a time and completely disrupt your budget.
- Similar to an IRA, an HSA account can be held on a brokerage account and invested for growth.
- This income is also accumulated tax-free.
How it increases your wealth: The tax deductibility of an HSA contribution alone can be significant. If you’re contributing $ 7,100 annually to a family plan and are in the 22% income tax bracket, you will save $ 1,562 annually on income taxes only.
If you invest these annual tax savings at 7% per annum for 30 years, you have $ 153,096.
If you only spend half of your annual dues on medical expenses, the other half can be invested. For a family plan, this means that $ 3,550 can be invested per year. At 7% per year, the account will grow to $ 347,923 after 30 years.
If you add the $ 347,923 in the account to the $ 153,096 you can get by investing the tax savings in your contributions, you will have $ 501,019 in 30 years.
Are you excited?
What to do next: Open an HSA account with a bank or credit union, or open an account with a broker if you want to invest most or all of your contributions. Fidelity Investments is one of the largest investment brokers and offers HSA accounts.
5. Exchange your car
According to the AAA, owning a car costs an average of $ 9,282 a year. Since most households have two, this doubles to $ 18,564 per year.
An expense so large it needs to be reduced!
There are several ways you can play this. Obviously, it costs more money to own a vehicle with a new model and financing. If you can trade in a late model vehicle for an older car that you can buy with cash, you can potentially cut the annual cost in half. That saves you $ 4,641 a year.
The other is to pay back the loan on one of your cars and stick to the strategy of only paying for one car at a time.
How it increases your wealth: If you invest the extra $ 4,641 per year at 7% for 30 years, you have $ 454,851.
What to do next: Find out how much you can sell your current vehicle for on a review site like Kelly Blue Book, then plan how much car you can afford and buy in.
6. Move your credit card debt to a 0% introductory APR card
The typical credit card charges interest rates between 13.99% and 26.99% per year. If you’re roughly in the middle of this range, you’ll be paying around 20% on your outstanding balances.
If you have an average of $ 10,000 in credit card debt over the course of a year, you’ll be paying $ 2,000 in interest.
But what if you could leave that interest – at least for a while?
You can, and the way to do it, is through credit cards, which offer a 0% introductory APR on credit transfers. Most offer true interest-free periods of 12 to 18 months.
In theory at least, you can use a new 0% credit card every time the introductory offer expires on the most recently used card. This way, you can charge your credit cards interest-free for several years.
If you do, the best strategy is to take advantage of the interest savings to fully repay and ultimately pay off your credit card balance.
How it increases your wealth: If you can save $ 2,000 a year in interest and invest 7% a year, you will have $ 196,022 after 30 years. However, we recommend that you pay off your credit card balance in full before investing the savings.
What to do next: Check out the best 0% APR and balance transfer credit cards and make your interest payments go away.
7. Move your savings to a high yield savings account
If you’re like most people, chances are you have your savings deposited with a local bank. If so, your interest rate is likely something surprisingly low when you look at the national interest rate, which doesn’t lead to too much growth. However, banks know that the main reason to open an account is because there is a bank branch nearby.
You can do a lot better by going against the grain and finding a bank that pays a much higher interest rate. There are online banks that pay interest rates of up to 2.00% and are fully FDIC insured. You really have to save money here.
How it increases your wealth: Let’s say you have $ 20,000 in cash savings and are currently earning 0.07% at your local bank. After 30 years, you will have $ 20,423.
If you instead invest in a high yield online savings account, say 1.75%, your account grows to $ 33,657.
That’s an additional $ 13,234 just for the bank draft. It’s that easy.
What to do next: Check out the best high yield savings accounts and start earning higher interest now.
8. Make use of cashback credit cards
Because it’s so convenient, you likely make a large portion of your monthly expenses on credit cards on a regular basis. One of the best ways to use this to your advantage is to get a cash back credit card.
How it increases your wealth: For example, let’s say you charge your credit card $ 2,000 per month, which is $ 24,000 per year. If you could earn 2% cashback on your credit card – which isn’t even exceptional with cashback credit cards – you are making $ 480 per year in cashback benefits.
If you invest the $ 480 per year savings, with an average annual return of 7%, you have $ 47,050 after 30 years.
Withdraw your credit card balance in full each month to avoid interest expense and get the maximum benefit from your cashback rewards.
What to do next: Take a look at our list of the best cashback credit cards and choose the card that gives you the most cashback based on your own spending patterns.
9. Refinance your student loan
The average student loan debt is nearly $ 33,000. And many people owe more and some owe much more.
This makes refinancing student loan debt one of the most important ways to save money.
Let’s say you are the average graduate and owe $ 33,000. The average interest rate you pay on your debt is 7% on loans with an average maturity of 15 years. The monthly payment is $ 296.
If you refinance a new student loan at 3.5% interest for the same amount and duration, your new monthly payment will be $ 235.
How it increases your wealth: By applying the $ 61 reduction in your new monthly payment – all interest – to the new loan amount, you reduce the term from 15 years to 11 years and three months. This will subtract $ 10,575 from the back end of the loan.
What to do next: Find out about the best student loan companies for refinancing and see ways to lower both the interest rate and monthly payment on your current student loan.
10. Look for the best insurance rate for cars and homeowners
It’s easy to renew your insurance every year without deciding whether you really are getting the best rate. However, auto insurance rates change regularly, and you could be missing out on significant savings if you haven’t compared rates in a few years. Instead of blindly renewing your current auto insurance, take the time to compare coverage and rates.
This also applies to homeowner insurance. You could walk away with more coverage and lower premiums by taking a little time shopping.
How it increases your wealth: Depending on your coverage needs and the priorities you need to set based on your personal situation, you can save hundreds of dollars in premium fees annually. And that money can be a significant part of what you can save on a monthly basis.
What to do next: We have lists of the best auto insurance and homeowner insurance options in the country. Your first step is to compare prices. So we recommend using the tools provided in these articles to do just that.
11. Get a Budget A.S.A.P.
The most basic way to save money is by creating a budget. Only knowing exactly where your money is going can you make the kind of spending cuts that save you real money.
It also gives you a better way to control a large number of expenses. This can sometimes help you avoid eliminating or seriously reducing major costs. Small percentage reductions on a large number of expenses can save you a lot. That way, you can save and invest money in the brighter future that everyone wants.
How it increases your wealth: Once you have a viable budget, you will be in control of your finances. For example, let’s say you typically spend $ 5,000 a month. With a budget in place, you can decide to cut your spending by 10% across the board. That saves you $ 500 a month or $ 6,000 a year.
If you put the $ 500 per month in savings averaging 7%, you are $ 588,040 after 30 years. And if you can gradually increase your budget savings, the bottom line is even higher.
What to do next: Choose a budget app that works for you. Set it up and implement it ASAP so that from then on you can take control of your budget. It doesn’t have to be perfect either. You can tweak it along the way to make it even more effective.
Supplementary savings strategies to build up your nest egg
There are many ways to save money – many, in fact – and you may prefer cutting a large number of smaller expenses rather than hitting the large ones (although we strongly recommend a combination of the two for the greatest effect).
The next 75+ ways to save money don’t result in the huge savings you get from the ones mentioned earlier. However, if you implement enough of these, you can save hundreds of dollars more every month.
Do not ignore this section! At least take a quick look at the list and find some that are easy for you to implement. Combined with some of the above, you’ll be amazed at how much control you will gain over your budget in the weeks and months to come.
Get an energy audit for your home
Many energy suppliers offer their customers free energy audits to save energy. The audit shows you exactly where your energy leaks are, so you can focus your improvements on the places that get the highest return on investment. It will feel like a new source of free money as your energy bills come down.
Insulate your home sufficiently
Most houses have draughty areas and not all of them can be blamed on ghosts. Insulating your home can be as laborious as blowing cellulose insulation into hollow walls, or as simple as rolling out a few more Pink Panther coils in the attic.
Find air leaks in your home
This is the largest energy use in homes, especially in homes where some presidents have stopped by. The low-tech way to find air leaks is to use your hand or an incense stick to see which way the wind is blowing. The high tech method is to request a blower door test that will scientifically reveal your biggest problems. In general, your solution involves stripping and covering windows with plastic.
Install CFL or LED lights to cut your electricity bill
Compact fluorescent materials may not have the promised longevity, but they beat lightbulbs by a mile. They also use a fraction of the electricity that light bulbs use, reducing your energy bills. You can also pay a little more and get the LED bulbs. The LED lamps are more energy efficient than the CFLs and last up to 20 years.
Install a programmable thermostat
One of Dad’s other lovable habits was having a cow when someone touched the thermostat. He set it to frugal 64 in February for a reason, Dadgummit, and you can just put a sweater on. Now you can pop like the old man and keep your home temperature within your budget without touching the thermostat. The programmer allows you to keep the temperature low (or high if we’re talking about summer) during the day when no one is home, and to a more comfortable setting when everyone is home.
Unplug energy vampires
If you’ve always kept your TV, computer, stereo, blender, microwave, toaster, coffee maker, and other non-essential devices plugged in, they are drawing power from the wall without using it. Plug these items into a power strip and you can easily turn everything off with a single button.
Take care of your devices
Dust can collect in the vents of refrigerators and dryers. Not only does this mean that these devices need more power to operate, but the dust build-up is also a potential fire hazard. By regularly checking your devices, you can protect your home and keep your bills low.
Rent unused space in your home
Whether you have an unused mother-in-law suite or half of your garage is completely empty, there is likely someone willing to pay you for the privilege of using your empty space.
Be sure to check with local occupancy restrictions if you want to rent a room or suite to an individual. And if you want to allow someone to keep items in your home, make sure it isn’t dangerous. Not only do local authorities dislike seeing hazardous materials, but so does your homeowner’s insurance company.
Install a low flow shower head
This quick weekend project will make your shower more efficient and you won’t feel any difference in your water pressure. Low flow shower heads can save up to a gallon per minute (typical shower heads use around 2.5 gallons per minute). This can result in enormous annual water savings in water consumption.
Downgrade your cable, phone, and internet
For most families, these three services are the same amount of money every month. Monitor your usage over a month or two and decide what you actually need and what you could cut. Do you really watch premium channels? Does the landline do anything other than collect dust? How fast does the internet have to be if all you have to do is check Facebook and email?
It is really worth looking around and finding cheaper cell phone service. Es ist noch wichtiger, ein günstigeres Internet zu erhalten, wenn Sie ein Unternehmen haben. Und wenn Sie schon dabei sind, können Sie möglicherweise sogar einen kostenlosen Kabelservice erhalten!
Ersetzen Sie einzelne Fensterfenster
Nach Angaben des US-Energieministeriums können Fenster zwischen 10% und 25% der Heizkosten eines Hauses ausmachen, indem sie Wärme ablassen. Das Ersetzen von Fenstern mit schlechter Leistung macht sich letztendlich bezahlt, obwohl der anfängliche Aufwand für neue Fenster möglicherweise unerschwinglich ist.
Installieren Sie Sturmfenster, um Wärmeverluste zu vermeiden
Diese isolierenden Fenster können den Wärmeverlust durch Fenster um 25% bis 50% reduzieren.
Installieren Sie eine Toilette mit geringem Durchfluss, um den Wasserverbrauch zu reduzieren
Wenn Sie kein Low-Flow-Modell haben, können Sie durch die Installation eines Modells viel Wasser sparen. Selbst wenn Sie sich keine neue Toilette leisten können, können Sie den Wasserverbrauch pro Spülung reduzieren, indem Sie eine Plastikflasche mit Wasser und Kieselsteinen in Ihren Wassertank stellen.
Warten Sie Ihr Auto, um unnötige Kosten zu vermeiden
Einer der wichtigsten Aspekte eines kostengünstigen Fahrzeugbesitzes ist die ordnungsgemäße Wartung. Dies umfasst alles, vom ordnungsgemäßen Aufpumpen der Reifen, um die Laufleistung zu maximieren, bis hin zum Ölwechsel und zur Einstellung des Motors in den erforderlichen Intervallen. Dies verhindert, dass Ihr Auto Sie mit einem vermeidbaren Problem „überrascht“.
Erhalten Sie Belohnungen für den Kauf von Benzin
Wenn Ihre monatlichen Benzinkosten außer Kontrolle geraten, können Sie mit einer Cashback-Kreditkarte bis zu 5% zurückerhalten, wenn Sie an der Pumpe tanken. Sie können auch dem Fuel Rewards Network beitreten und bei jedem Auffüllen Geld sparen.
Verbessern Sie Ihren Kraftstoffverbrauch
In vielen Artikeln wird empfohlen, anstelle eines Fressers einen Gassipper zu kaufen. Dies ignoriert jedoch die Tatsache, dass es schwierig sein kann, das Geld für den Kauf eines neuen (für Sie) Autos zusammenzustellen, wenn der von Ihnen verwendete Gasfresser perfekt gewartet werden kann. Finden Sie also Möglichkeiten, um die Kilometerleistung zu maximieren, die Sie erhalten können. Dazu gehört, dass Sie beispielsweise Fremdkörper aus dem Auto fernhalten (da der Motor aufgrund des zusätzlichen Gewichts härter arbeiten muss), die effizienteste Route in der Stadt für Ihre Besorgungen planen, den Luftfilter Ihres Autos reinigen und das Tempolimit einhalten. da die meisten Motoren zwischen 40 und 60 Meilen pro Stunde am effizientesten arbeiten.
Online nach Benzin suchen
Haben Sie jemals bemerkt, dass Tankstellen innerhalb weniger Blocks 10 ¢ -20 ¢ Preisunterschiede aufweisen können? Verwenden Sie Websites wie gasbuddy.com, um den günstigsten Kraftstoff in der Umgebung zu finden, anstatt nur an einer beliebigen Tankstelle zu tanken.
Warten Sie nicht, bis Sie mit Dämpfen arbeiten, um zu tanken
Bettler können keine Wahl sein, und wenn Sie auf E fahren, müssen Sie den Benzinpreis akzeptieren, auf den Sie stoßen. Planen Sie Ihre Tankfüllungen so weit im Voraus, dass Sie auswählen können, zu welcher Tankstelle Sie gehen möchten – sei es aufgrund der guten Preise oder Ihrer Prämienkarte.
Fahrgemeinschaft, wenn Sie können
Das Teilen einer Fahrt kann nicht nur die Langeweile Ihres Pendelverkehrs aufheben, sondern auch dazu beitragen, Ihre Benzinkosten zu halbieren. Auch wenn Sie niemanden kennen, der an denselben Orten wie Sie lebt und arbeitet, können Sie über Apps wie Waze und iRideshare.org einen Pendlerkollegen finden.
Öffentliche Verkehrsmittel sind nicht nur für New Yorker
Mit dem Bus oder der U-Bahn können Sie nicht nur den Benzinverbrauch senken und den Verschleiß Ihres Autos verringern, sondern auch Ihre Versicherungsprämie senken, da Sie das Auto seltener benutzen. Wenn Sie jedoch darauf bestehen, herumzufahren, lesen Sie, wie Sie ein Uber-Fahrer werden können, und vielleicht können Sie ein paar zusätzliche Dollars sammeln, um alles zu sparen, während Sie herumfahren und die Dinge tun, die Sie tun müssen!
Verwenden Sie Reiseprämien-Kreditkarten, um Geld bei Flugreisen zu sparen
Für Geschäftsreisende sollten Sie die besten Kreditkarten für Flugmeilen prüfen. Mit Ihren regulären Einkäufen sammeln Sie nicht nur Meilen, sondern erhalten auch doppelte und dreifache Meilen für die Buchung Ihrer Reise über Ihre Karte.
Wenn Ihr Auto weniger als 2.000 US-Dollar wert ist, lassen Sie die Kollision fallen und decken Sie sie umfassend ab
Ein Vorteil beim Fahren eines Jalopys besteht darin, dass Sie diese Art der Abdeckung nicht mehr benötigen. Die Kosten für Kollision und umfassende Deckung kosten Sie mehr, als Sie erhalten würden, wenn Sie einen Anspruch geltend machen müssten. Sie können mehrere hundert Dollar pro Jahr sparen. Stellen Sie jedoch sicher, dass Sie genug Geld für Einsparungen haben, um Ihr Fahrzeug zu reparieren oder zu ersetzen, falls dies erforderlich sein sollte.
Erhöhen Sie die Kfz-Versicherung Ihres Selbstbehalts
Wenn Sie Ihren Selbstbehalt von 250 USD auf 1000 USD erhöhen, können Sie bis zu 15% Ihrer Prämien sparen. Warten Sie, bis Sie über einen komfortablen Notfallfonds verfügen, da es für Ihr Portemonnaie nicht gut wäre, einen Anspruch geltend machen zu müssen und den Selbstbehalt nicht bezahlen zu können.
Suchen Sie nach Rabatten für mehrere Richtlinien
Wenn Sie Ihre Kfz-Versicherung bei einem Spediteur und Ihre Haus- oder Mieterversicherung bei einem anderen haben, prüfen Sie, ob beide Rabatte bieten, wenn Sie alle Ihre Policen unter einem Dach vereinen.
Verwenden Sie Coupon-Apps zum Einkaufen
One of the simplest ways to save money at the grocery store is to download a coupon app like Ibotta or Checkout 51. These two apps allow you to select coupons and then, once you buy the items, you can scan your receipt and receive cash back for those purchases. It takes almost no time at all and the apps can be used at any store where the receipt prints out a description. The best part is you can use both apps on a single receipt so I have both on my phone.
Make meal plans
One of the biggest food budget busters is when you have no answer to the question “What’s for dinner?” Rather than get in the habit of ordering pizza or going out for fast food when you’re stumped by the dinner question—which is infinitely more expensive than cooking at home—get used to planning out your meals for the week or month.
Not only will this save you money on take out, but it will also put you in a good place to actually use all the food you buy at the grocery.
Make a grocery list and stick to it
Once you know what you plan to make for dinner each night of the week or month, make a grocery list based on your meal plans, and only buy what is on your grocery list! Meal planning ninjas can get to the point where they buy certain ingredients on sale to be used in multiple meals, but even just starting with meal plans and a list for the week will save you money. Having a specific list of items to buy can even combat the grocery mistake of shopping while hungry. It doesn’t matter how tempting the apricots jarred in honey may sound, if it’s not on the list, it’s easy to say no.
Cherry pick the grocery deals
As you get better at meal-planning and list-making habits, you can start using your local grocery chains’ loss leaders for bigger savings.
Each week, grocery stores publish their sales—and some of those advertised prices are so low that the store would be losing money if all the customers were to only buy the sale items. Making your meal plan with the grocery circular in hand will allow you to figure out what meals will be cheapest for you to make that week, based on each chain’s loss leaders.
Then, buy only those loss leaders at each grocery store, and get the rest of your ingredients at whatever supermarket generally offers the best prices. This turns grocery shopping into a much longer affair—it takes several hours to pore through the circulars, make your plans, and then go shopping at several different stores—but the savings are certainly worth the time.
With the exception of a few notable items (Pop-Tarts come to mind), most generic products are almost identical to their brand name counterparts. Do you buy Cheerios just because you always have? Try the Generic Os and see if they’re not exactly the same, for a fraction of the price.
Pay attention to unit costs
The one caveat about buying generic is that sometimes it actually is cheaper to buy the name brand. This is why you have to keep an eye on the unit cost of anything you buy at the grocery. The generic cans of soup selling 3 for $5 sound like a great deal, but the Campbell’s soup selling for $1.50 each is actually cheaper.
Most grocery stores offer a unit price listing, so that you can compare apples to apples (so to speak), but some do not. Get in the habit of carrying a calculator with you to the grocery store (or using the calculator function on your cell phone) to figure out what product gives you the biggest bang for your buck.
Buy in bulk, but be careful
This is a money saving tip that could potentially bite you in the butt. It is much cheaper to buy most items in bulk, from crackers to cereal to toothpaste to shampoo. However, some individuals (including yours truly) cannot handle the temptation of having a 144 count package of cookies in the house, and end up overspending on food that’s eaten far too quickly. So only purchase in bulk if it is something you know you can handle storing in your house before use. In my case, that means I buy cleaning and personal care items in bulk, and I buy a week’s (or at most a month’s) worth of food at a time.
Pay attention to expiration dates
I once bought a gallon of milk that soured before I got it home. We may have grand illusions about returning to the store and demanding a replacement or a refund, but I know that I never made it back to the store. It’s much easier to just keep a close eye on expiration dates as you put the items in your cart. Similarly, double check that the carton of eggs you’re choosing is free of cracked eggs, and that the cans you want are not dented, and everything in a jar is well sealed.
Speed up your grocery shopping
If you try to squeeze in your shopping between other appointments, then you’re more likely simply get the items on your list and go, rather than meander through the store and get tempted by unnecessary items.
Sign up for the free loyalty cards
Grocery stores offer loyalty cards that make you eligible for additional savings. If you’ve skipped the loyalty card in the past because you don’t want extra cards in your wallet (or on your keychain), now you have no excuse. Smartphone apps like Key Ring now make it possible for you to always carry your loyalty cards without having to keep track of yet another card.
Bring your own grocery bags
Not only is this better for the environment, but many stores will also offer you a small discount for every reusable bag you use. The discount may not be much—generally about 5¢ per bag—but even 50¢ saved with each trip to the grocery can add up. After all, you’d be thrilled to save 50¢ on any one item on your list.
Have a bi-monthly “clean out the pantry” week
We all have random cans and packages in our pantries, freezers, and fridges. Often, we end up throwing that food out later because we’ve forgotten about it until after it expired. Make sure you use up the food you’ve already purchased by planning a no-shopping week once every couple of months. That week, your mission will be to eat up all the food you already have without adding to the stockpile. This is a great time to practice some culinary creativity.
Brown bag your lunch
It’s easy to make a little extra food at dinner, and package up the leftovers for your next day’s lunch. Not only does it take care of those pesky leftovers that can sometimes just stay in the fridge until they become a science experiment, it’s also much cheaper than buying lunch every day. With an average fast food meal running around $8, you’ll spend $40 per week – or about $2,000 per year – just buying lunch! You can save at least $1,000 per year by cutting that have enhanced.
Even if you do not have leftovers from dinner, it’s relatively simple to put together a decent lunch for much cheaper than fast food: grab a hard boiled egg, an apple or a banana, a cheese stick, and a granola bar, and you’ve covered every food group for a lot less than it costs to buy lunch.
Learn to use up leftovers
When you are doing your meal planning, add some of the great fridge-clearing recipes for making sure you use up everything. For example, quiche is a delicious (and easy) meal that can handle any meat and veggie odds and ends you want to put in it. Stews and casseroles are also good ways to use up the tail end of Tuesday’s green beans and Thursday’s ham.
Plan for “I don’t feel like cooking” nights
There is a definite time and place for convenience foods. On those days when you would rather go back to work than face the kitchen, you can have some frozen meals already set aside that you can just heat and eat. To be ready for those inevitable nights, just make a double batch of any kinds of meals that freeze well—lasagna, tuna noodle casserole, chicken and rice casserole, and the like—and freeze the one you don’t eat that night. If you do this every time you cook a freezable meal, you’ll soon have plenty of convenient options on harried nights, and you’ll have saved money on each casserole, to boot.
Get a slow cooker
One of the easiest ways to make inexpensive and filling meals is with a crock pot. You can find these appliances for as little as $10-$15 on sale, and there are countless slow cooker recipes online. You can put the ingredients together in the morning before work, set it to simmer, and come home to find dinner done at the end of the day.
Become a vegetarian (some of the time)
Meat is often the most expensive part of any particular meal. Even the most dedicated carnivore can find some favorite vegetarian recipes, and switching to at least one meatless dish a week can really help to bring down your grocery bill.
Drink more water and save on soda
Every nutritionist seems to agree that drinking calories in the form of soda or juice is a terrible idea for our waistlines—and apparently diet options aren’t that much better. Rather than spend money on your beverages, why not develop a taste for water? If you’re used to sweet drinks, you can wean yourself off the stuff by mixing water and your favorite beverage, slowly changing the ratio until it’s just water.
Eat in season and locally
You may know that watermelon is going to cost a mint in February, but most of us are so used to all produce being available year-round that we’ve forgotten what is in season when. Reacquaint yourself with the growing season. The cheapest way to buy produce is to only get what is naturally growing in your area. That doesn’t mean you have to start shopping at farmers’ markets (which can sometimes be more expensive just for the quaintness factor)—it just means that you use the produce that is abundant in your area.
Dine out intelligently
According to the US Department of Agriculture, the average American household spends 54.4% of their food budget eating out. Obviously this is a rich source of saving money.
When you do decide to enjoy a restaurant meal, you can still save money. Order an appetizer as your main course. They are generally more than large enough to fill you up, and will be much cheaper than the entrees. Another option is to split an entrée. Even if the restaurant charges you for splitting (as some do), this will still be a cheaper option than both of you getting your own meal.
Cook less and eat less
There are very few Americans who couldn’t stand to take in fewer calories. If you’re already thinking about trying to drop a few pounds, you could also save yourself some money at the same time. Rather than spending money on diet programs or foods, why not just reduce your portions? Use the recommended portion sizes to determine the size of your meals, and you’ll save money.
Make like your dad and turn off all lights
There was a reason why the old man stalked through every room of the house, turning off lights and muttering about not being made of money. Leaving lights burning wastes energy and money.
Use shades judiciously
Tight-fitting, insulating window shades can help to reduce drafts in the winter if other weatherizing measures haven’t fixed the problem. In the winter, closing your curtains and shades at night can help to keep drafts out, while opening them during the day can help sun-warm the house. In the summer, close south- and west-facing window shades during the day to keep the sun from over-warming the house.
Boil water in the microwave, rather than on the stovetop
Using your nuker to boil water can use up to 60% less energy. If you do need to boil a pot on the stove, make sure you always place the top on the pot—it keeps you from wasting energy on heat loss.
Keep your freezer full
Your freezer works much more efficiently if it is full. The cold items help to keep each other cold, and the freezer doesn’t have to work as hard. You can use bags of ice to help keep the freezer at capacity if you don’t quite have the food to fill it, but just make sure you leave about 1 inch on each side of the interior for better air exchange.
Line dry your clothes
Your clothes dryer is a utility hog. It takes a great deal of electricity to heat up your clothes to dry them. According to The Lint King, the average clothes dryer uses about 13% of a home’s energy budget. That which makes it the most expensive appliance to run in your house—even more expensive than your refrigerator. In addition to that, clothes that dry on a clothesline tend to last longer than those that go through a dryer, so line drying will also reduce your clothing expenses.
Use your dishwasher
This is one area where the new-fangled gadget actually saves you money and energy (not to mention time), over the old-fashioned way. Just be sure to fill up the dishwasher, since the appliance uses the same amount of water, whether it’s full or half-empty.
But turn off the dishwasher’s heat dry function
This is energy that doesn’t need to be used—just allow the dishes to air dry for 20 to 30 minutes before you put them away.
Fix leaky faucets
This is an easy DIY project that will save you hundreds of gallons of water a year. If you’ve never done it before, you should be able to learn by watching some YouTube how-to videos. The good folks at Home Depot and Lowe’s should be able to help you with any hardware you’ll need.
Change your HVAC filter once a month
This will keep your system working at peak efficiency. The filters themselves cost only a few dollars each at Home Depot, Lowe’s, or even Walmart. If you’re unsure exactly how to do it you can always check out YouTube. Seriously, it’s a job you can do in under five minutes.
Lower your water heater’s temperature
13% of your home’s energy goes to heating water, so setting your water heater to 120° will reduce your energy expenditure—and lessen the risk of scalds.
Wash your laundry in cold water
Unless you are laundering cloth diapers, there is very little need for you to wash your duds in hot water. Turn the dial to cold, and you’ll see your clothes last longer and your energy bill lowered.
This sounds like a no brainer, but many chronic conditions can be prevented or lessened by eating right and exercising. There’s something to that old adage about an apple a day. The exercise-and-nutrition-industrial complex would have you believe that you have to spend money to stay healthy, but nothing could be further from the truth.
Get in the habit of walking
All you need for this ideal exercise is a pair of shoes. Walk to go on errands instead of jumping in the car, or start a walking club with some friends to explore the local neighborhoods.
Bike to work
This is a double-whammy of helping you stay fit while also decreasing your commuting costs.
Grow a garden
This exercise will not only keep you shape, it will also help lower your grocery bill. And anything you can grow in your backyard is going to be a nutritional powerhouse—especially compared to pre-packaged processed food.
Don’t let your doctor be a stranger
Even healthy individuals need to see their doctors regularly. Making sure that you get your regular physicals will help to catch any potential health problems before they become crises.
Ask your doctor questions
Being your own advocate is an important part of medicine. So, when your doctor recommends a procedure or a medication, ask questions about it. Find out why the doctor believes it’s necessary, and whether there are alternatives. Blindly following what your doctor recommends might be costly, and possibly unnecessary.
Go generic with your medicine
It might seem as though generic drugs are somehow inferior to their name brand counterparts, but that simply is not true. The generic version has to meet the exact same standards as the original, and you can get it for a fraction of the cost.
Ask about discounts and samples for medication
If you are not able to get a generic version of your medication, you still might be able to save money. Ask your doctor to write you a prescription for three months’ worth of a regular medication, which generally means you will only have to pay one co-pay instead of three. Alternatively, many doctors will try to help out their patients by giving them samples of expensive meds. Ask your doctor if there are samples available that you can use to help make your overall medication costs lower.
Try home remedies when you’re sick
Honey really can soothe a cough, and ginger really does work wonders for nausea. Often, home remedies will work as well as (or even better) than their over-the-counter cousins, for much less. The next time you’re feeling ill, try a home remedy before heading to the pharmacy.
Understand your health insurance coverage
Before making any appointments with doctors, make sure you spend time on your insurer’s website to know exactly what your insurance covers and what you will need to pay out-of-pocket. It can be a major hit to your wallet if you don’t find out that your insurance doesn’t cover new glasses until after you have already ordered a new pair.
Shop around for medical procedures
Believe it or not, you can check the rates for various procedures at hospitals just like you can check insurance rates. If your doctor has recommended a procedure, find out the current procedural terminology (CPT) code for that procedure. This is the standard billing code that will be the same across the industry. With that code in hand, you can contact the billing department to find out the cost of the procedure, although this could take some persistence. If you find another hospital charges less for the procedure, ask your original hospital if it will match the price.
Ask about a prompt-pay discount
Again, if you have to pay out-of-pocket for all or part of a procedure, you may be able to negotiate a lower price by offering to pay quickly. Hospitals don’t want to chase patients for money, even though they often have to. Prompt payment is definitely worth something to hospitals and can result in a 10% to 40% discount.
Have your hospital bill itemized
Because of the number of people involved in any one patient’s care—nurses, doctors, specialists, etc—the rate of errors on hospital bills is relatively high. Anytime you have to pay for a hospital stay, request an itemized bill and ask questions about any items you do not understand. And be sure to dispute any errors.
Enroll in a Healthcare Flexible Spending Account
We listed Health Savings Accounts (HSAs) as one of the best strategies to save, which allows you to both make out-of-pocket medical costs tax-deductible and get the benefit of tax-free investment earnings. But another, less generous way to accomplish the same goal is through a Flexible Spending Account (FSA), if one is offered by your employer.
For 2020 you can contribute up to $2,750 to an FSA, however you won’t have the benefit of being able to retain the funds for future investment. If they’re not used during or shortly after the tax year, the funds are forfeited.
These can seem like more trouble than they’re worth, but they are an invaluable tool for keeping your healthcare expenses low. Until you get the hang of estimating how much money to set aside, use an FSA calculator to determine how much to put away.
Set goals for saving
The ability to save money usually requires creating a target. Do you want $1,000 saved in the next 6 months? Or $5,000 in the next year? Maybe you want to save. Or money for a new car? Setting goals has a way of creating that all-important visual motivation that often gets lost when saving turns into a pure numbers game. Start setting some savings goals, and be bold when you do. It’s better to aim high and just miss the mark, then to aim low and fall short.
Make a plan for saving
Now you need a way to reach your goals. It doesn’t have to be elaborate, but you need a plan. For example, if you want to have $6000 in your emergency fund one year from now, you can accomplish it by setting up automatic deposits for $231 to go into the account from each paycheck, assuming you’re paid every other week.
Set your saving priorities
What you value most is going to be where your money goes. Sit down and set your priorities for your finances. If getting out of debt is your main goal, make it a priority. If filling your emergency fund is the plan, make it the first target you hit before you move on to other savings goals.
Make saving money automatic
You can’t spend it if you don’t see it. Have automatic transfers from your checking account to your savings account every paycheck. You could also set up automatic deposits to go into investment accounts and retirement accounts. But if your goal is to pay off debt, you should have the money directly deposited in your savings account, then pay toward your debt each month.
Watch your money grow!
Here is the fun part! Sit back and watch your savings account get bigger and bigger.
The Bottom Line on Ways to Save Money
If you’re serious about reaching financial independence – or retiring early – you’ll need to approach the goal on two fronts: earning more money and saving money. The combination of the two can fast-track your financial progress.
You should certainly find ways to increase your income. But if you can also implement at least some of the strategies in this guide to reduce your expenses, you’ll be able to save and invest more money than you ever imagined.
And if you’ve ever wondered how people retire at 50, 40, or even 35, that’s how it happens. They make more money, and find ways to live on less. There are the two basic ways to build wealth in the shortest amount of time.