1. Extend the life of your smartphone or tablet battery
I just recently started doing this, and it really does help save my phone's battery life. Protect your device from temperatures above 95 degrees, which can damage battery capacity; shut down location-tracking apps when not using them; and turn off the function that refreshes apps in the background.
2. Homemade salad dressings
They are are surprisingly easy to make; plus, they're cheaper and better tasting than store-bought. For balsamic vinaigrette, whisk together 1 minced garlic clove, a pinch of salt and pepper, 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard and ß cup balsamic vinegar, then slowly whisk in 1/2 cup olive oil.
3. Free money!
An individual development account, or IDA, allows low- to moderate-income earners to save money for a specific goal — such as a down payment on a house or starting a business — and get matching funds from nonprofit groups, corporations and government agencies. Many IDAs provide a dollar-for-dollar match. Visit IDAnetwork.org to learn more.
4. Don't get stuck picking up the tab
When friends are short of cash, free payment services such as Square Cash and Google Wallet allow them to move money from their account to yours as easily as sending an email.
5. Buy luggage in March
Travel retailers know we gear up for spring and summer vacations in March, so they often discount prices.
6. Repurpose bad beauty buys
Salvage an unflattering lipstick shade by mixing with plain lip balm to sheer the color and texture down to a wearable tint.
7. Do you have land to share?
SharedEarth.com is a free site that connects landowners with gardeners or farmers. You provide the land for free and growers share some of their produce.
8. Nab the best online deals
Before you hit the "buy" button, install a free Web browser add-on, such as PriceBlink.com, to your computer to help you find better deals. PriceBlink, scans more than 4,000 merchants to find low prices and alerts you to coupons.
9. Go for cash back instead of points and miles rewards
Credit card companies can suddenly increase the number of points and miles you need to redeem travel benefits and other perks. Cash doesn't lose value even if a company changes policies.
10. Don't dump that old iPhone
This was quite surprising! First-generation iPhones that sold for $599 in 2007 are now collectibles and, if in mint condition, worth big bucks. The recent asking price on eBay for an 8GB iPhone in its original packaging was $10,000. I do have a first generation iPhone, too bad it's not in the original packaging.