When it comes to budgeting, I say, “Start out with small changes.” (You can quote me—Semper Wifey.) Try to save an extra $100. See how that goes for a month or two, then tweak your budget as you see fit. This, of course, is assuming you keep a budget. (Which you should!!! If you need a little help, visit your local NMCRS for free help with budget management. I used to volunteer with this organization by helping service members with their personal budgets and can attest to NMCRS’s strong desire to help you succeed financially.)
With that being said, there are many ways to save $100 (or more) from your regularly budgeted expenses. Here’s the trick. Are you ready? Keep buying exactly what you’re already buying. Just buy it cheaper. Easy peasy!
Here are some easy tips to live the same lifestyle, only slightly more frugally. And not in the crazy coupon lady way.
- Deal of the day sites. If you set aside money each month to get your hair done, go out to eat, etc., check sites like Groupon and LivingSocial to buy vouchers for these services and products. I buy from them all.the.time. It’s the only way this brunette can afford to be blonde! ;)
- Double up on coupons at Target. Check http://coupons.target.com/ to get their store coupons (indicated by the bullseye printed on the coupon). When combined with a manufacturer’s coupon (like the ones in the paper or from http://www.coupons.com/), you can save a ton, especially on toiletries and cleaning products.
- Shop from a list. Don’t go to the grocery store (or anywhere else) without a detailed list. This will keep you from buying a random items, usually junk, that always make your bill higher.
- Take advantage of store promotional codes and coupons for gifts (for others or yourself). If you’re going to a store that always has a coupon available, make sure you find and use a coupon. A quick Google search for “[Store Name] printable coupon” will usually yield a great coupon. Similarly, if you’re shopping online, a quick Google search for “[Store Name] promo code” will also usually give you some way to save.
- Buy diapers using Amazon Mom Subscribe and Save. It’s free to sign up for their program, you receive a huge discount on diapers (and many other products), they’re delivered to your home for free, and you get an Amazon Prime subscription which entitles you to free 2-day shipping on most items from Amazon. Win, win…win!
- (Because it's my blog, and I can break my own rules if I want to...) Keep a budget and track your spending. If it’s not in the budget, you don’t need it!