Instead of telling you ways to save money or spend wisely, today I’m going to talk about just how easy it is to NOT spend money. That is, after all, the best way to save!
It’s amazing how many little things we do each day that can be costly. Whether it’s buying coffee on your way to work, leaving the water running while you brush you teeth, being disorganized and missing a bill (resulting in a late fee) – there’s almost always something that you’re doing (or not doing), that is eating away at your finances.
Following is a list of ways to not spend money.
This one is pretty obvious, but some people really just don’t understand how crucial staying home is when it comes to preventing yourself from spending money.
Staying home doesn’t have to be boring, either. You can catch up on your favourite TV shows, play board games, or organize something (I can’t be the only person who finds organizing fun, right?).
We actually have an “I’m Bored” sheet in our home management binder, so if we ever feel like there’s nothing to do, we take a look at that list.
Bring Your Own Coffee
If you work outside of your home and find yourself buying coffee every day, or even a few times per week, consider bringing your own coffee with you. Stop paying over-priced coffee house prices and save some money by making your own coffee and bringing it along with you.
A good quality thermos can be found for $15 or less and coffee is pretty inexpensive if you buy it on sale. Even if you can’t find your favourite brand on sale, I’m sure that even full price would be much cheaper than buying a coffee from your local cafe every day.
While you’re at it, bring your own lunch, too!
If at all possible, take public transportation and avoid owning a vehicle. By doing this, you will be saving a bundle of money. No more insurance, car payments, gas bills or repairs and maintenance to pay for.
Not only that, but by using public transportation (walking or biking is even better), you are helping the environment by not polluting the air with the fumes from a vehicle.
Spend next to nothing (or nothing at all, if you’re lucky!) on your grocery bill by taking a bit of time once per week to order and clip some coupons.
You don’t need to be an extreme couponer. Just using a few coupons per week can lead to great savings if you are purchasing items you would normally buy.
If you are just getting started with coupons and would like more information on how to get items for free or very cheap, check out my how to use coupons in Canada article.
Visit Your Local Library
Stop paying for books, movies and music when you can get it all from your local library. You can borrow many great items (including new releases) from the library for FREE – it’d be silly to not take advantage of this great community offering.
Just be sure to return the items you borrow on time to avoid paying late fees.
Don’t Sign a Phone or Cable Contract
Instead of signing on for a 2-3 year phone contract, get a pay as you go phone. You should never feel like you are forced to sign a long term contract. With just a bit of research, you will find that there are many other options out there.
As for cable TV, watch your favourite TV shows online for free instead of paying a company to show them to you.
Learn to Say No
Don’t feel obligated to go to every party, wedding or dinner out. Be selective with the events you attend and only spend money when the event is a very special one. Say no to everything else and don’t feel guilty about it.
If your friends and/or family ask why you don’t want to attend, simply let them know that you are trying to save money.
If you look around your home, I’m sure you can see areas that you can stop spending in. Maybe your closet is bursting at the seams – so you probably don’t need to shop for more clothing, even if your favourite store is having a 50% off sale.
Do you trip over your children’s toys on a regular basis? Maybe it’s time to stop buying new ones.
Whatever it may be, if there’s a way that you can save money, do it! The more you are able to save now, the more you will be able to enjoy your future later.