2. Automate payments - Most people already do this - by automating your bill paying online, you will never miss a payment, which means you avoid late fees plus you save money on postage.
3. Wash clothes in cold water - This will save you money on energy costs and your clothes will come out just as clean.
4. Unplug block-type chargers - When cords on phones, computers, small appliances, etc.. are not in use, they should be unplugged. If the charger is plugged into the wall it is still on and consuming energy even if you aren’t charging.
5. Do-it-yourself home improvement projects - Tackle projects around the house, such as painting or basic landscape work, etc.. to save a lot of money on professional services.
6. Install low-flow shower head - You won't even notice the difference because a low-flow fixture reduces the volume of water but does not affect the water pressure in any way.
7. Repair vs. replace - Try to fix something that’s broken first (if the cost is minimal). Not sure how to repair it? There are plenty of YouTube tutorials with step by step tips.
8. Shop around for better rates - Whether it's getting lower costs for your mortgage interest rate, mobile phone service, insurance rates, credit card interest rates or internet service, etc... it pays to shop around or better yet, if you are happy with your current provider, call them and ask to them to lower your payment. Most companies will give you a lower rate in order to keep you as their (happy) customer.
9. Recycle gift bags, wrapping paper, ribbons - If it can be re-used, don't throw it away! I always recycle gift bags, tissues, bows, ribbons, etc.. from previous presents.
10. Create homemade gifts - If you love to bake, make some yummy cookies or brownie and present it in a gift basket or tin. If you love photography, print out some photos of the recipient and place them in a set of inexpensive frames.
11. Walk or ride your bike - Instead of driving a few blocks to your destination, why not walk or ride your bike? It will save you money on gas and it's good exercise also!
12. Do-it-yourself beauty regimen - Why pay a professional if you can do it yourself? I personally dye my own hair, give myself the occasional manicure and pedicure.
13. Sell unwanted stuff - When you are clearing out your home or office, you will most likely come across items that are a little more than "garage sale" material. I have sold many items on Craigslist that I do not need anymore such as furniture, electronics, designer shoes & purses, plants, books, toys, etc..
14. Find promo codes and deals online - Before you hit that “submit order” button, search for online promo codes, coupon codes or deals. Sign up to receive emails from your favorite online stores. They usually send out exclusive deals or discounts to their email subscribers.
15. Workout for free - Skip the gym (and the high membership fees), exercise for free… whether it’s walking, running, jogging, biking, or whatever activity you enjoy. Short on time? You can burn some calories when doing simple chores around the house, such as sweeping or washing the dishes.
16. Plan errands efficiently - When I run errands or go shopping, I try to do it all in one trip. Not only does this save me time and effort, but it saves on gasoline as well. If there's a coupon that's about to expire and it's something I am actually going to use, I plan my trip around that day.
17. Empty your vehicle's trunk - Most of us know what it feels like to be hauling a few extra pounds around the midriff. It's no different with your car... excess weight places more demands on your engine and creates suspension, braking and even exhaust problems. Check your car right now. What's in there that can come out?
18. When traveling abroad, use your debit card at ATMs to withdraw local currency - Keep fees low by making fewer and larger withdrawals from your home bank account when traveling. If your U.S. bank has a partner in Europe, for example, use their ATMs for the best rates.
19. You don't have to pay for your credit score - If you have a Discover Card or Capital One, an added benefit is that you can now access your FICO score for free! Sites such as CreditKarma.com, Credit.com offer credit scores for free also.
20. 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. I use Chase Freedom and Capital One credit cards.
21. Make your own salad dressing - They are are 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.
22. Make a list - I'm a big believer of writing things down. Whether it's a grocery list, an errands list, a 5 year goal list, etc.. I think it's important to visualize your tasks or goals. For example, by having a list when I go food shopping, I tend to stick to the list and in turn save money along the way. It's a great feeling to cross something off my list once I've accomplished said item on list.
23. Limit meat portions - Dividing your plate into three equal portions of meat, vegetables and grains - 3 to 4 ounces each - will be better for you (health wise) and cost much less.
24. Split a meal when dining out - Save money by splitting an entree with or without an appetizer or salad with another person. The bonus is that you won't be tempted to overeat.
25. Eat your leftovers - Often times, you or someone in your group have leftovers. It's quite wasteful to throw away perfectly good food that you already paid for. Ask for a doggie bag, make something creative with your leftovers the next day, chances are it will taste better too.
26. Skip the dessert- Although this is very tempting, often times your main meal was more than enough. You don't really need that plate of chocolate cake a-la-mode! But, if you have to have dessert, split it amongst the group you are dining with.
27. Recycle - Instead of throwing away paper, cardboard, cans, plastic, or glass... take it to your local recycling center. Not only is it good for the environment but you get paid in cash! Make sure to have designated containers for each category at home, to keep things organized.
28. Use coconut oil - There are numerous ways to use coconut oil, besides for cooking! Some of my favorite ways are as a makeup remover, lip balm, to control frizz, shaving treatment, under eye cream, body oil and also as an itch reliever.
29. Share things - instead of buying the latest fashion magazine, my friends rotate magazines amongst each other. Carpooling is a means of sharing rides, where everyone involved takes their turn in driving. When traveling with one or more people, bring one set of necessities so that there's no need to check in your bags. Share as many things as possible, such as recipes, books, clothes, meals, tools, etc..
30. Get free stuff - one sure way to spend less is getting stuff for free! If it's your birthday, many places reward you with free treats. For more freebie ideas, click here. The best things in life are free!