10 Practical Ways To Save Money And Increase Your Net Worth

Saving Money Isn’t Always Easy

Our economy has been through the wringer lately, and most people are looking for ways to cut back on their budgets.   Making sure that you have a little extra money saved in the bank is more important than ever.

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For many of us our budgets already seem pretty tight, and it’s hard to imagine where we’ll be able to find more areas to cut.  If you look, you too can find ways to cut back. Here are a few practical ways that you save some extra money this year.

50 Easy Ways To Save Money Every Month

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10 Practical Ways To Save Money

  1. Cut the cable TV:  Cutting your cable TV can save you a lot of money, and not just once, but every month.  The average cable bill can run anywhere from $40-$120 every month. Add that up over a year and you’ve saved from $480-$1440!  Instead of watching cable, watch your favorite shows from most networks on a service like Hulu.com.  Not only is watching shows on Hulu free, but there are less commercials!  If you still want to watch the shows on your TV and not your computer, you can easily set it up so you can stream Hulu to your TVthrough an Xbox 360, Playstation 3 or other set top box.  Using a software like Media Mall’s Playon software, you can stream Hulu, comedy central and a ton of other networks streaming TV feeds directly to your TV. Cost?  One time fee of $40 for Playon.
  2. Take a personal day to find better rates on insurance: One thing that I’ll do every couple years is take a personal day from work so that I can take an entire day just to focus on our insurance coverages, shop around and find better rates.   For example, last time I did this I was able to find better coverage on our auto and homeowner’s insurance, for about $1100 less per year!
  3. Cancel Subscription Services and Use Cheaper Alternatives:  One thing we’ve done in the past at our house is cancel our netflix subscription, and move to a cheaper alternative, renting movies at a Redbox.  For Netflix we were paying close to $15/month, and only getting 2-3 movies a month. In comparison for the same amount of movies rented at the redbox less than a mile from our house, it cost us just over $3.  If you can find a redbox free rental code (which are readily available), it can be even cheaper!    Use this tactic for other subscription services like newspapers or magazines. Instead of paying subscription fees, just buy it on the newstand for the rare ocassion that you want to read it.
  4. Buy Used:  Instead of buying that new car for 20 grand, buy a 2-3 year old car with low mileage of the same make and model for about half price.  I did this when buying my car recently, and we saved probably about 12-14 thousand dollars!   The tip works for other things as well.  Try it when buying clothing, books,  electronics or other high ticket purchases.
  5. Pack your lunches, and limit eating out:  I used to think this tip was silly until we tried it at our house.  After doing our budget we realized just how much we were actually spending on lunches and dining out together.  Let’s just say it was a lot more than we thought it was.  Even cut this spending in half and you’ve probably saved a couple hundred/month.
  6. Save money at the movies:  If you’re a movie buff like my wife and I, you can find a lot of ways to save money when you go to the movies.  Go to a matinee, see the movie at a second run theater, buy packages of tickets at a reduced rate, bring your own snacks, seek out free family movie days in the summer or join movie watcher loyalty clubs.  Wow, that was a mouthful.  Check out the link for more!
  7. Maintain things: Keep up on the regular scheduled maintenance for your car (oil changes, tire inflation, check fluid levels), as well as regular maintenance on your home.  Keeping up on the  maintenance may not feel like you’re saving money (in fact you may be spending some), but it can mean that you’ll save hundreds or thousands of dollars down the line because your things will last longer.
  8. Give yourself a waiting period: Are you prone to going out and buying things on a whim? Give yourself a waiting period within which you can’t make a purchase.  The more susceptible you are to spontaneous purchases, the longer your waiting period should be.  I like to wait at least 24 hours before making a decision to buy something, longer if the price tag is higher.  Saving up and paying cash is an even better idea, often you’ll find by the time you’ve saved up for the item, you don’t really want it anymore.
  9. Don’t shop when you’re hungry, and make a list:   One mistake that I make all the time is that I tend to go grocery shopping when I’m ravenously hungry.  When I do that I often end up buying a bunch of groceries that we don’t need, and that sometimes spoil before we can even eat them.  Go shopping after eating a meal, and only shop with a list.   Don’t buy anything that isn’t on your list.  For more ways to save on your groceries, check out this post.
  10. Save by asking for a discount:  Often you can get a discount on the services you use, and the things you buy just by asking.  For example, call up your internet company and ask for  a discount on your monthly bill. Often they’ll give you a reduced promotional rate for a limited time, or a reduced rate to not jump ship to another provider.   Another one we’ve used is to ask for a discount on medical bills.  Often if you call up the hospital billing department you can save 10-20% off of your bill just by asking, and paying cash.  We did this last year for some of my wife’s medical bills.

There are 10 ways you can save money, just by making small changes to your lifestyle, or by making a few phone calls.  Quick painless, and hundreds of dollars in savings.

Do you have a quick and easy tip on how to save money?  Let us know what it is in the comments!

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Last Edited: 10th February 2014

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Comments

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  1. says

    Track your spending! If you track what you spend you may realize you’re buying lots of stuff you don’t need. You don’t realize all of the little things you pile up every day. I swear, every time we go to the mall our pockets get empty and we don’t even buy anything from the big stores. It’s little things like pretzels and drinks that do us in.

    FFBs last blog post..Credit Cards Don’t Suck, You Suck!

  2. says

    Number 8 is such a good one! When I was in college, used to make a lot of impulse buys and adopting this method has really helped me to reign in my spending. I saw another good list like this yesterday on GenX Finance with some other interesting tips, in a guest post by the authors of the Power of Small. Here’s a link: http://genxfinance.com/8-small-changes-you-can-make-to-save-an-extra-100-this-month. Thanks for the great advice!

    Kates last blog post..Stains the World Famous Cupcake Dog

  3. says

    Great Post! Remember that in your budget there is not usually one item that you will save a ton on a month but it is a combination of changing many items in your budget that you begin to see savings.

  4. says

    Another one to add would be to get rid of gym memberships if you do not use them. Eating out is the worst. Brown bagging and cooking in can save a lot of money over time. Cutting cable costs are big if you don’t mind it. Otherwise, the entertainment value is worth the costs like it is for me.

  5. says

    Great ways to save. I actually just took a “going green” challenge, only spending cash for 14 days. I saved $700 dollars I normally would have blown through with my debit card. You could definitely add this tip to your frugality ways.

    DMSmithbloggers last blog post..The Going Green Challenge

  6. says

    Thanks for the great post. On your point of “Buy Used” just last night I brought home a 81cm TV for $50 from a friend, instead of coughing up $1000 for a new LCD of the same size. Sure, the quality isn’t as good but it will do for now.

  7. Phi says

    We recently bought a 2nd vehicle and needed to insure it. Initially pricing seemed fair but I wanted to check other insurers; two others were coming in around $940/annual vs the $1452/annual I was quoted from my existing insurance company. So I kindly explained the situation to them and that I would likely pull my home policy if I switch my auto. As a result, I was re-rated which dropped auto to $908/annual and home to $582/annual (from $822/annual) for the exact same coverage. Total savings of $784 a year!

  8. says

    Great advice. I’ve actually been working on 1-5 for a while now and was surprised at what a difference it has made in increasing the amount of money left over at the end of the month. Money that can now be applied to our debt snowball.

    Additionally, in one area I have actually spent money in order to save money. I invested in an Ooma Hub so that I could do away with my monthly phone bill. The device itself will be paid for in about 6 months and after that, whatever I was paying each month for phone service will be savings. It’s gone a long way toward helping us save money on our monthly budget.
    Suburban Dad´s last blog ..You Have Yellow Teeth (and other things your kids will tell you)

  9. frugalgrad says

    I love red box. 1 movie 1 night costs 1.08$ (included tax). It makes sense to use this service since I’m not going to watch a movie twice, why should I keep it for another 7 days and pay for it. It’s cheaper alternative to movie subscription and movie theater. This service is going to be popular since everyone’ budget is tightened these day. But you have to have entertainment. By the way, not sure what happen but the Red Box in my area become blue nowadays. May be we will have to start to call it the Blue Box soon enough. Hope they are not trying separate Democratic states from the Republican ones. Haha, this is going to be funny.
    frugalgrad´s last blog ..5 Things To Prepare When Flying SouthWest Airline Back To School.

  10. Kris says

    I appreciate your suggestions of ways to save money. However, I wouldn’t recommend the site Hulu.com as they provide pornography and r-rated programming as well. Thankfully, it was red flagged to us to protect our family.

  11. Glenda says

    This economy hit me and my family like a boulder. I still have a car (paid off) and a house (almost paid off). I have not missed a thing on this list. I would like to ad that any job is better than no job. I recently found a job that is part time and low paying, and I love it and I’m thankful. I have friends who are losing everything and still holding out for that high paying job. God won’t give me more if I’m not thankful for what I have.

  12. says

    Great post Pete. I am definitely with you on the whole redbox thing. I was surprised that they carry pretty new movies (with blu-ray as well). My Netflix subscription is now on the endangered list!

  13. says

    I get a much better value out of Netflix for the money. We only get 2-3 DVDs per month, but both my husband and myself watch Instant Watch movies and TV shows almost every night. (Okay, okay, every night!) So we definitely save money over Redbox, plus we have more options than Redbox could give us.

    Everything else though, I agree completely! Great post!

  14. says

    Thanks for these tips. I actually save money last month because I have Hypertension. I did not eat from restaurant. I went to company hospital for free medicine. I only bought vegetables for salad without meat.
    I realized that I had wasted big amount of money eating outside and even buying things that are not healthy.

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