1. Use Cash for Gas: I only pay cash for gasoline. The cash price per gallon is less expensive than if you’re paying with a credit or debit card. I use the app GasBuddy to help me locate the cheapest cash priced gas station near me.
2. Maximize Product Use: Extend the life of most personal care product by either cutting the tube of toothpaste or adding water to shampoo or conditioner to get most of the remaining stuff inside.
3. Do Meal Planning: Rather than going out to eat, cook at home more. Plan the weeks meal ahead of time and always prepare food that has been sitting in the fridge first.
4. Eat Rotisserie Chicken: Speaking of meal planning, one of the best and least expensive meal planning hack is the delicious already cooked rotisserie chicken that you can buy at most grocery stores. Stretch your budget and leftover chicken with these 5 meal ideas: chicken tacos, stir fry chicken, bbq chicken sliders, chicken salad, chicken soup. I’m sure there are countless of other delicious chicken meal options.
5. Drink Water: When you do go out to eat, instead of ordering expensive drinks at a restaurant, order water instead. This also applies when you’re home, this not only saves money, it’s a much healthier option.
6. Eat Leftovers: Do not waste perfectly good food. Be creative and whip up something tasty by adding other ingredients to your leftovers.
7. Shop Secondhand: Before heading out to a retail store for furniture, home goods or clothes, buy from yard sales, thrift stores, Goodwill, Facebook Marketplace, OfferUp, NextDoor or Craigslist instead. Some of these sites also have a Freebie section.
8. Re-use and Re-purpose: Instead of throwing something out you thought you didn’t need anymore, see if you can use it for a different purpose. For example, use your husband's old t-shirt as a sleep shirt, old sheets as dog bedding or a lone chair as your “new” office chair.
9. Pay the Balance: If you use credit cards (most of us do), make sure to always pay on or before the due date to avoid late fees, and always pay the statement balance amount to avoid incurring any interest fees.
10. Propagate Herbs: Even if you don’t have a garden, you can propagate rosemary, basil, green onions, etc. by placing fresh or cut ends in a container with clean water by a window. Once you see roots, you can transfer them to your yard or a bigger container with soil.
11. Get a Cheap Haircut: If you’re like me, I refuse to spend hundreds of dollars on a haircut at some fancy salon. Instead, try a no-nonsense salon that only cuts hair and does not require you to have them wash your hair (for more money of course).
12. Buy Refurbished Electronics: Save a substantial amount of money by buying refurbished smartphones, tablets, laptops, computers, etc. Instead of buying the latest model, I chose to buy my iPhone and MacBook Pro from BackMarket, plus they offer a warranty.
13. Go on a Day Trip Getaway: No matter where you live, there’s bound to be a destination that’s just a short drive away to enjoy. Start early and spend the whole day discovering, exploring, dining, shopping and more! No need to spend money on accommodation either since you will be driving back home after your adventure.
14. Exercise at Home: No need to join an expensive gym or buy over-priced equipment, why not set up an area (or room) at home where you can work out. You can even do easy stretches, arm curls, leg lifts, etc while watching your favorite show. Pick an exercise video, such as yoga that you can follow along in the comfort of your own home. Be disciplined and set aside time in your schedule and make it a routine.
15. Buy Generic Brands: Save money by buying generic store brand vs. name brand products. I only buy generic brand toilet paper, paper towels (which also double as paper napkins), tall trash liners, coffee pods, etc. The quality are usually just as good as a name brand but for a lot less.