We’re all been sucked into those lists like “50 Things To Do Today to Save Money.” I know I always click on them as I wonder if there’s anything on them I’m not already doing or haven’t done in the past. But sometimes it can be so overwhelming to think of one more thing we should be doing. We do so much in a day, especially if we are trying to stretch the budget. Instead of thinking of more things we should be doing, how about thinking of things not to do to save money?
Some ways are easy, some do involve a little sacrifice. However, all are things you don’t have to do instead of more things to do. I don’t know about you, but I would love to save more money without having to do more things.
Don’t go to the movies
Just don’t go. I’ve been to one movie in 10 years. Yes, it’s true. We watch movies on Netflix, Amazon, or occasionally on Vudu. Even when we do rent one through Vudu, it’s less than $10. A movie ticket, at the cheap place near us, is $6/ticket. The other theater is $9/ticket. Plus the cost of gas to get there, snacks (even if you bring your own), etc. We save so much money by just not going. This does mean you have to wait for the movies to hit streaming but lots of movies are hitting streaming pretty fast these days. The only movie I went to see in the theaters in the last 10 years, hit Netflix 6-7 months later.
Don’t go to the store as often
I am a weekly shopper. Some people are 1-2 times a month grocery shoppers. Work on not stopping at the store very often. A way that I do this is by using Amazon Subscribe and Save. I get things like diapers, dishwasher tabs, certain snacks, and more through Subscribe and Save. Not only are the items cheaper that way, I’m not running out to the store to pick up something we ran out of. Even with my normal weekly shopping trip, I keep a list going all week long. As soon as we run out of something or I think of something we need, I add it to the list. It is rare that we have to run to the store between weekly trips.
Don’t buy as many gifts
This isn’t to say you skimp out on Christmas or birthdays, just keep it simple. There is no need to buy your kids piles of gifts. If you have the money and want to do a splurge Christmas, go for it! There’s nothing wrong with that. Just don’t feel like you have to do a ton of gifts. Don’t give into that pressure, even if it is just internal pressure. If you need a guideline, some families do a three gift rule. They do: one thing you want, one thing you need, one thing you read/create. Or I’ve also seen four gifts: one you want, one you need, one you read, one you wear.
You can also cut back on how many people you give gifts to. Does your mail carrier, hairdresser, UPS man, all the teachers you kids have, all your cousins, etc. really need gifts? You might decide yes, but you might decide no. Cutting back to giving gifts to only immediate family can really help save money.Want to save money? Don't do these things!Click To Tweet
Don’t go out to eat
On the surface, this sounds like more work. By not going out to eat, you have to cook at home. This is true. But, if you have kids, going out to eat can be a production. It isn’t as simple as it was pre-kids where you just decided on a place and went. Now you have to make sure everyone likes it, everyone is dressed and ready to go, any things needed for toddlers/babies are packed to go, etc. Or if you are going out without the kids, you have to set up babysitting, prep for the babysitter, cook dinner for the kids and sitters (if your babysitter doesn’t cook), etc.
You can save money and work by just staying home! Menu planning does help with this as you can make sure you are prepared all week. It’s also good to have a list of easy meals for those nights you don’t want to cook. It can honestly be less week to just throw together spaghetti or breakfast for dinner or grilled cheese than it is to get everyone out the door to a restaurant.
There are lots of things not to do to save money. These are just a few of them. What are some of your favorite ways?Come party with me! Here are all the link parties I do each week.