You may think the key to having more money is earning more money.
But before you get a 2nd job, you should look at your expenses.
What can you cut?
What can you eliminate?
In America, we are famous for labeling our “wants” as “needs”.
So, which areas should you be cutting back on?
To start, here are some ideas to save on communication, food, utilities and insurance…
1. Consider cutting your home phone. If you still have one, it may be unnecessary. Do you really need it?
2. Look at your cell phone plan. Do you really need all of that? Only pay for what you use.
3. Look at other providers. Compare plans among providers. To really save some money on your phone bill, check out J’s article over at Budgets Are Sexy.
4. Reevaluate your internet plan. Shop around and look at all your options. You’d be surprised how similar the speeds of different internet plans are. It’s not always worth it to pay for the fastest one.
5. Cut back on eating out. Set a limit. Once per week, once per month or whatever works for you, but limit it.
6. Cook at home. I know, this is basically your only option if you’re not eating out all the time, but it’s worth mentioning. Cooking and eating meals at home can be great family activities and it’s a way to save some money. New to the kitchen? Become a better cook.
7. Use what you have. Use the food you already bought. Don’t let it go to waste. Use the last week each month to make meals that clean out your fridge and your cabinets.
8. Use coupons when it makes sense. Don’t spend 15 hours each week clipping coupons just to save $25, but some coupons are worth clipping. Be discerning and learn which coupons help the most. Sites like Coupon Sherpa can help you pinpoint deals and discounts to grocery stores, drug stores, and even Amazon. The deals are out there, you just have to look!
9. Stop paying for drinks. Drink water. It’s a much healthier alternative to sodas and juice. Plus, it’s free from the tap! If your water tastes bad, try this filtered pitcher that my wife and I use. If it’s really terrible, you may need this reverse osmosis filter.
10. Track all your food. Keep up with how much you spend on food. It’s much cheaper to bring your lunch to work, rather than eating out for convenience. And track every little snack or drink you buy at convieience stores. It adds up!
11. Turn down/up your thermostat. Each degree will save you about 3%-5% on your bill. Better yet, get a programmable thermostat and it will pay for itself.
13. Cut back on the hot water. If you don’t want to take any heat out of your showers, you could always just cut back by using cold water to wash your clothes.
14. Self-insulate your home. Weather strips and window insulator kits are just a couple of the affordable ways you can add extra insulation to save on utilities. There are also insulating blankets and covers for your water heater and air conditioner.
15. Cool for less. Cut money on cooling in the hot summer months with these tips.
16. Check your coverage. Do you really need all the coverage in your insurance policies? You may be covered by two different policies for the same thing. See what you can drop.
17. Raise your deductibles. If you have an emergency fund, there’s no reason to have a high deductible. If you just take the extra money you would pay each money for having a low deductible and put it in a savings account, you will make up the difference in a few months.
18. Shop around for car insurance. When was the last time you called around and checked prices? There is always a cheaper insurance company out there, just make sure the quality isn’t lacking. We found out that Geico was cheaper for us, but we prefer the quality of USAA and it’s not that much of a price difference, but it’s good to know.
Cut Back Expenses Everywhere
Look at every area of your life. What can you cut?
Communication, food and utilities are 3 of the main areas you can and should cut back on.
But that’s not all…
You can save on all your purchases. Learn how to earn while you spend.