More money saving tips.....

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deerhart
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Re : More money saving tips.....

Postby deerhart » Fri Jun 27, 2008 02:41 pm

really I find the key is just to take advantage of everything you have available to you. So like for us
1) we get a discount on all stuff for the dog, including free (to a limit) vet care, grooming etc..
2) I converted my hotel points to Southwest airline credits and bought some more points to convert to credits to end up with 2 round trip tickets on southwest four our vacation (cost $125)
3) I used unused credits on American to pay for my ticket, got a transportation voucher for the left over and used that to pay for half of another ticket for the other 2 tickets for vacation (total $148.65), yes a family of 4 is flying roundtrip for less then $275. It would have cost me a little over $300 to drive us there.
4) I bleong to some online groups that give me giftcards at regular intervals, which I then have been saving to buy the kids clothing for the school year (I have about $50 in old navy cards now). Previously I was using them to purchase books at Borders, then I got the borders bucks and turned around to buy more books!
5) I belong to all sorts of reward programs include bondrewards, ebates and Upromise. Thus when I do my online shopping I get something (even if its just a little bit) back. We have turned the Upromise over to a 529 and so far each kid has gotten about $150.00 for their account (Free money on stuff I would have bought anyways). One thing with Upromise is that you get one cent for each gallon of gas you buy at mobil. Since I travel alot for my job, I usually have to buy 16-20 gallons a week, and I usually buy at mobil (I have a speedpass). Its not a TON of money (about $1 a month) but its better then nothing (and its free!)
6) We joined our banks keep the change program. This rounds all of our purchases with a debit card to the next dollar and then sends the change to our savings account. You get a big bonus the first year as the bank matches your contributions at a larger rate (we got $250.00). Now it matches at like 5% I believe. Through this, we generally see an extra $30-$40 a month go into our savings account
7) UNPLUG THE UNUSED APPLIANCES that toaster, the can opener, the coffee maker all sitting there plugged in and not in use still draw some power, unplugging them can take some money off your bill.

8) Don't flush every time.. I know sounds kind of gross, but there is no need to flush each and every time if your not using tons of toilet paper and such. By flushing every other time, you will conserve water and save on your water bill.

9) water your lawn/plants at night, you will then lose less water to evaporation because of the heat and thus require less water

10) mow your own lawn - if you pay someone $20 to mow your lawn per week, that's about $55-60 a month savings right there (to compensate for the gas usage). Same thing applies to washing your car.. do it at home instead of at a car wash

11) if you use a lot of stamps, you may be able to have them sent to you without going to the Post office or you can prepay and print postage from your computer.. saves you the drive to get stamps. Also, stamps can usually be bought in other places like grocery stores (so you can combine trips). Another option, ditch the stamps all together and pay your bills online through your bank or through the companies website, saves money on stamps AND on purchasing checks. In my household we have approximately 12 monthly checks and 1 weekly check that needs to be written. I write 5 checks a month and nothing is mailed. I save $5.04 a month on postage and I haven't bought checks in 3 years...

12) If you have loans, you may check with your lenders. Sometimes if you have the payment automatically withdrawn from your account, the lender will knock some percentage off your interest rate. This is especially true with student loans. While it may only equal $1-$10 a month, over 10-20 or even 30 years this savings adds up. Especially if you take that money and save it.

13) if you have debt decide how to pay it off based on one of two ways. Either pay off the lowest amounts first, and once a bill is paid off take that money and apply it to the next bill. Or pay off the highest interest rate first. We pay lowest to highest because rates are about the same and the lower ones do not have a lot on them (so they will be payed off quicker)

emersons mom
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Re : More money saving tips.....

Postby emersons mom » Fri Jun 27, 2008 12:06 am

Erin, great ideas!

We have several close friends with kids that live at far ends of the country, we are instituting a no gift policy, not just the cost of the gift but the cost of the freight is insane! We would rather try to see each other every few years, so the attempt on our part is to keep the amount of gifts for birthdays and christmas smaller than our toy storage but also to save that money, I really want my son to be imaginative and not have toys that only do one thing, so we have tried to buy him universal type toys like blocks that he has to create with, anyway this week we got this huge box of gifts from friends for his birthday and i was just sick opening it and seeing the price they paid a high end toy store for the stuff he just does not need......so whether appropriate or not, I called the toy store, they agreed to credit her credit card and i spent another 12 bucks to send it back....but we just cannot keep accepting elaborate gifts when we know they are trying to have another child and we all have seen our budgets blown with food and energy increases! I may not be miss manners, but i feel better for hopefully getting her a full credit!

kelly8sully
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Re : More money saving tips.....

Postby kelly8sully » Fri Jun 27, 2008 00:13 am

I live in Wisconsin, which was greatly affected by the flooding a few weeks ago. Because of the flooding, the farm analysts are predicting meat prices are going to skyrocket this fall -- so I echo the plan to buy meat before the end of summer and freeze it!
Anyway, I am trying to make sure the dishwasher is fully loaded, that I am doing full loads of laundry (saves water and electricity), taking my own bags to every store (environmental too) -- some stores give you money back for using your own bags. I love the dryer sheet idea -- I'm going to do that right now!
We luck out because we have a free zoo with a new children's area.
We definitely plan our driving better anywhere we go, but I think we're not going on a family vacation this summer.
Unfortunately after watching national news tonight, the economic outlook doesn't look good for at the VERY least the next year. ARGH!

deerhart
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Re : More money saving tips.....

Postby deerhart » Thu Jun 26, 2008 02:16 pm

wehrenberg theaters does a summer family series every year
http://www.wehrenberg.com/presenting.aspx?pId=81
that is the link to the website which lists the movies and the theaters participating.

Use your coupons and rebates wisely. For example, last week Walgreens had oral b spin burshes at $5.50, and you got a coupon for 5.50 off your next walgreens purchase AND there was a coupon in the sunday paper for buy 1 get 1 free. So you would have bought 2 brushes for $5.50, plus got at least 1 if not 2 $5.50 coupons back. (that amounts to free or above free!)

Also track your grocery stores sales. By doing so you can see when the items you like to buy are REALLY on sale and thus stock up. It will also let you know about how long between the low low prices are so you know how much to buy. For example, BBQ is always lower in the summer time (usually at $1.00 or less) so you should buy enough to last you the whole year in the summer versus needing a bottle in late September and having to pay $2.50 for it. Lots of foods, especially ones that don't expire are cyclical like this. Buy when they are at the lowest sale price and buy enough to get you to the next expected sale date. Don't even ask how many packages of hotdogs I buy when they are 75 cents (I am down to my last 2 in my freezer now and they were bought almost 6 weeks ago)

I really haven't noticed an increase in food prices because I still buy the foods at the same rock bottom sale price versus the inflated regular price. I also buy generics (which haven't seemed to go up) if I can['t get the item I need at the lowest sale price.

Also get every sunday paper for flyers and go through them. In the last 2 weeks, there have been coupons for Target and Kmart for prescriptions. Transfer or bring in a new prescription and you will get gift cards to the store. If you get the prescription anyways, its an expense you pay anyways but you get a bonus with that. I still have a $10 target card from May, and will probably end up with at least another $20 in gift cards this month if not $30.

Preplan your trips. Sit down and plan out each place you are going and the most efficient way to get to all of them. Nothing like retracing where you have already drove to waste gas. Also, make sure your tires are properly inflated and remove any excess weight from your vehicle. This will both improve gas mileage. You can also switch to synthetic oil and delay your oil changes significantly. I change my oil every 5-8,000 miles instead of every 3,000. The oil costs me about $3.00 more to buy synthetic more mileage, but I change my oil half as often as other people. Also we do it ourselves, so its less then $15 every 4-5 months.

Increase the temperature in your house by 1 to 2 degrees can save you a bundle on electricity as well as lowering the temp 102 degrees in the winter.

lucy
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Re : More money saving tips.....

Postby lucy » Mon Jun 23, 2008 01:19 am

One I forgot about the library here has an awesome summer reading program its free, and they get to go to a swim party and get prizes and everything at the end of the year most all libraries have one.

cindyh27
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Re : More money saving tips.....

Postby cindyh27 » Sat Jun 21, 2008 03:20 pm

Saw this the other night on NBC Nightly News... for all you BLOGGERS out there and $$ Savers this is a good one!!

The 99 cent chef (click on link to view...)

http://the99centchef.blogspot.com/

summerw77
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Re : More money saving tips.....

Postby summerw77 » Thu Jun 19, 2008 06:52 pm

If gas prices keep going up, I am going to have to quit showing dogs. Right now, it is costing me about $600/weekend to go to a show, and we go to 1 or 2 a month. I think I would have plenty of $ if I gave up this hobby, BUT I CANT DO IT!!!!

So I buy my meat in bulk also, and I am a sale shopper like you have never seen!

amanda
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Re : More money saving tips.....

Postby amanda » Thu Jun 19, 2008 11:08 am

If anyone lives near a Publix...
Every week they have a flier that has $5 off $35 worth of groceries. It's usually found in the front of the store and few people around here use them. I however take 5-10 at a time and cut the coupons out! The cashier that I use every week even lets me ring up 35 dollars worth of groceries at a time and use multiple coupons. So, for this week alone I saved $15 on food (without counting two for ones ((for some reason alot of them were on my list - yippee!)) and coupons) - I bought a total of $140 worth of food for $88. Now, I must say that in some cases what I bought wasn't the 'name' brand and we are eating much less meat but still - feeding a family of 6 for a week for $88 is AWESOME!

Another thing that I've started to do is go to the Hillbilly Housewife site. All of her receipes are from stratch - the girls have been making a lot of homemade cookies and are making a gingerbread house right now (two for one graham crackers are the base) - I had to spend on the candy (again, 3 bags for $5 at Publix this week) but, its still cheaper than taking them somewhere with the gas price!

Finally, we thankfully have a pool in our neighborhood that has a lifeguard - I can just send them down there to swim - thank goodness they are older!

lucy
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Re : More money saving tips.....

Postby lucy » Wed Jun 18, 2008 00:15 am

Taking my own lunch to work saves sooooo much money some people I work with go out to eat EVERY day and also buy snacks for each of their breaks they have to be paying half their checks for their meals/snacks.

I also try to get and use the member cards when I do go out to eat so the points add up for a future meal.

Ime tempted to walk to work but its been sooo hot and I am so tired at the end of the day I cant imagine having the energy to even make it home.

I do use coupons (not as much now that I am working) and stockpile when possible so I pretty much dont have to buy any toothpaste, toothbrushes, deodrant and shampoo/condtions so that helps alot. Theres lots of rebates out there if you have time as well.

So anyhow dont really have anything too useful to add just wanted to let you know Ime feeling the pinch too and appreciate all the creative suggestions and ideas as well.

timelessbeauty
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Re : More money saving tips.....

Postby timelessbeauty » Fri Jun 13, 2008 07:05 pm

This is another thread along the same lines, if it would help. Love the new ideas coming up in this one!

http://www.preeclampsia.org/forum/viewtopic.php?t=22786



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