As we work to reduce our spending, get out of debt and build wealth, I am continually amazed at the never-ending ways there are to save money at home. We started working to reduce the amount of money we spend on running and living at our home by reviewing and revamping our grocery budget, and it just sort of took off from there. By researching and studying how people lived long before the internet and other modern conveniences, we’ve implemented a variety of ways to save money at home by simply getting back to basics. Here are 24 ways to save money around the home so that you can keep more of your hard-earned dollars.
1. Line dry your clothes or use a drying rack in the winter time
By cutting down on the amount of time your dryer is in use, you can easily shave 10 percent off your energy bill.
2. Wash clothes in cold water only
You likely won’t notice a difference in cleanliness, but your pocketbook will thank you for cutting down on hot water usage.
3. Turn off lights and appliances when not in use
I am always amazed when I go over to someone’s house and lights are on all over in rooms that aren’t being used. Become conscious of when you are and aren’t in need of electric use and have as little on as possible in terms of lights and appliances.
4. Turn the thermostat down in the winter and up in the summer
You can save up to 10% on your electricity bill by lowering your thermostat a mere 2 degrees in the winter or raising it 2 degrees during the summer.
5. When cooking, use the smallest amount of electricity possible
Hand mix things like baked goods and pancakes instead of using an electric mixer. Cook your pizza in a toaster oven instead of the big oven. Take meat out early and thaw it in the refrigerator instead of waiting till the last minute and having to use the microwave to thaw it out.
6. Turn off the TV and the computer
As an alternative, consider reading for awhile each night, playing games with the family or even go for a walk.
7. Make a menu plan
Making a menu plan for one, two or four weeks, and sticking to the menu plan list when shopping can save you a ton over time.
8. Consider cooking several inexpensive meals every month
Choose inexpensive meals like beans and rice, simple pasta dishes, or have a popcorn night.
9. Never throw away food
Bring leftovers to work for lunch, or simply make less so that you are not wasting any food.
10. Buy in bulk where it makes sense for your family
Start with things like spices, oils and grains such as oatmeal that last a long time.
11. Plant a garden
Plant the vegetables that your family eats the most, and learn how to can or freeze them so you can stock up for the year.
12. Stock up on sale items
Learn when the grocery items you buy regularly go on sale and then stock up.
13. Learn to do-it-yourself
There are many do it yourself videos and blog sites out there that can teach you to do nearly any home repair on your own.
14. Learn the value in simplicity
Home repairs and remodels don’t always have to be done with the biggest/best/grandest replacements. Sometimes simple is better. And cheaper. 🙂
15. Don’t replace it
Do you really need 10 serving spoons, three quart-sized pots or massive amounts of storage containers? Just because it broke doesn’t mean you need to replace it with another one. Work to simplify your home and only replace what you truly need to replace.
16. Ask for help
Call a friend or family member over to help with a repair job that’s too big or complicated to do on your own. Then return the favor.
17. Get several quotes for things you do need to hire out for
Look for the best quality at the best price. Don’t just take the first quote that comes along.
18. Plan home improvements around sales
Wait to replace that ailing floor until flooring is on sale at your local home improvement store. Plan landscaping jobs during summer sales.
19. Sell things that are no longer used or needed
If the hot tub has been sitting on your deck unused for two years, get rid of it and make yourself some cash in the process.
20. Be choosy about your forms of home entertainment
What means more to you: the cable subscription or the gaming system? Keep one and sell the other. Help your kids to simplify the amount of toys they have and keep only what means most to them or what they play with regularly, and sell the rest.
21. Be intentional with your clothes shopping
When clothes shopping, pick just a few basic outfits that can be mixed and matched. Have basics in each category of shoes that you need. Sell outfits you no longer wear.
22. Cut back on unnecessary driving
Drive less by combining trips and errands and using public transportation or walking/biking when possible.
23. Perform regular maintenance on your vehicles and keep them longer
Two of our three cars are over 10 years old and they still run great because we take good care of them.
24. Learn to do basic car maintenance yourself when possible
Do your own oil changes, wash and vacuum out your own car, and learn to fill up and change your own fluids.
By regularly assessing your money expenditures and really analyzing when you can and can’t do without, you can indeed save thousands of dollars each year in home maintenance and home living costs.
How do you save money around your home?