Benjamin Franklin, the politician, and scientist, who has regaled us time and time again with his witty and humorous pensées, once said that for someone to consider himself truly wealthy, he should consider making money as well as growing his nest egg.
Money-saving principles such as frugality have proved that it is, indeed, possible to live a fulfilling life, without the constant need to buy.
To keep up the pace with thriftology (the art of being thrifty), we’ve decided to share with you some of the best money saving advice we came across.
Keep in mind that every money-saving hack presented in the following article follows a time-honored recipe, meaning that it has been tested and retested to ensure it is helpful.
Without further ado, here’s our home-made list of money-saving hacks.
1. Instead of Going Out, Consider Inviting Your Friends Over
The perspective of hanging out with your friend is enticing to say the list, but do keep in mind that your wallet/bank account will not be as happy or as content as you are at the end of the day. Why is going out on a Saturday evening, not such a brilliant financial move?
Consider the expenses: booking a table at your favorite locale, getting there either by using a cab or your own car, and last, but not least, the bill. Getting crazy with your friend every now and then is fine, but going out each week can become quite expensive.
So, what’s the best way to avoid these unnecessary costs?
It couldn’t be easier – think about inviting your friends over to your home. It doesn’t have to be anything grand or special; just a little get together with your closest friends, watching a movie, playing board games, and reminiscing.
To cut back, even more, you can ask each of them to bring something over like homemade food, drinks (booze included!), movies, or board games. The possibilities are endless and, the best part is that it will help you save a lot of money at the end of the month, money you can very well use to pursue some of your personal projects.
Let’s talk numbers. According to a statistic published by Event Brite, people tend to spend, on the average, approximately $90 when going out with their friends. This includes transportation, beverages, snacks, and, in some instances, admission tickets.
On the other hand, as we’ve mentioned before, if you host a small get-together and ask your attendees to bring some goodies, you can very well save that money, you would otherwise spend on a typical night out.
2. Refrain from Using Credit Cards each Time You Go Shopping
Shopping is widely regarded as a good way to unwind, thus the explosion of malls and shopping centers. There’s nothing terribly wrong with going to the mall a couple of times per month to take a peek and to buy something, but overdoing it can become problematic in the long run.
But that’s not the issue here; buying with your debit card is okay, but using your credit card each time you go shopping can, in fact, land you in debt as fast as you can say ‘Mastercard.’ This is not something new under the sun, and with banks boasting their low-rate credit cards with accessible coverage, the urge to use one of these plastic beauties becomes irresistible.
Why is it so risky to use a credit card all the time to pay for your stuff? Well, there’s the danger of forgetting to cover the sum you’ve borrowed from the bank while shopping, and with the added interest, you wake up having to return a sum greater than you’ve spent.
More specifically, each credit card contract holder has that small thing called the ‘late fee.’ As its name suggests, it’s a penalization fee a client is contractually compelled to pay if he doesn’t cover the borrowed sum on time.
According to Lifehacker’s appraisal, the late fees can be as high as 25%. For example, if you spend $1,000 during your shopping sessions and fail to return the sum on time, you will have to pay $250 worth of penalty fees.
So, what is there to be done? Think about canceling your credit cards or leave it or them at home altogether so that you can avoid being tempted to use them during your shopping spree.
3. Consider the Idea of a Yard Sale
Organizing a yard sale might sound like a cheesy idea, but don’t dismiss the benefits of such an event too soon. You could deem as junk most of the stuff you find lying around your house, garage, attic or basement, but there might be someone out there looking for that exact item or items you are looking to get rid of.
Don’t rush into thinking that putting some of those old household items on sale will bring you a heap-load of money in just one day. Hosting yard sales requires a basic grasp of the market, meaning that you must know what people are looking for nowadays.
A good way to get your bearings is to visit websites such as Craigslist to see what the competitors are offering and to compare their inventories with your.
Be mindful when setting your price of your yard sale; people won’t even bother looking at an item if it’s accompanied by a price tag of $200. For the best practice and results, you should charge no more than $5 for used baby clothes, about $1 for jewelry, and $1 for old books.
If you plan on selling electronic devices such as TV sets, computers, or tablets, you should do a bit of research beforehand to be able to establish the right price. Typically, outdated electronic equipment is sold at a 75% discount.
Some yard sale enthusiasts managed to scoop up at least $1,000 by selling stuff laying around the house.
4. Think about changing your Internet Service Provider
Living in an era where information is everything makes it extremely difficult not to be connected to the Internet. Moreover, the grand world wide web being the repository of everything conceivable by the human mind, it’s also a great source of entertainment, apart from its educational aspects.
Still, choosing the right ISP (Internet Service Provider) and plan for your house can become a thorny enterprise taking into account that speed and accessibility can cost you that extra dime you wanted to set aside for something else.
Fortunately, websites such as HughesNet Reviews can help you find the most cost-effective plan. Whether you are an online video game buff or simply want to relax after a hard day’s work streaming Netflix or HBO Go, there’s a solution, regardless of how your bank account looks at the end of the month.
Moreover, according to a plan comparison survey, a household owner can save up to $60 per month by cutting the cord, and switching to a plan that has less channels and more broadband speed.
5. The Library Card – Your Gateway to Quality and Free Entertainment.
There’s this nonsensical saying according to which you have to spend a lot of money in order to obtain quality entertainment. Nothing can be further than the truth and your gateway to limitless hours of fun is more accessible than you realize.
Libraries are no longer those places where people go just to read books or study for their exams. Nowadays, these institutions have stepped away from their outdated role of book reliquaries, and encompass everything related to society: books, movies, magazines, newspapers, and, some of them, even video games.
Coupled with free access to Internet, the library shakes off its rigid façade, rolling out its red carpet in front of anyone interested. What’s even greater is that there’s no charge for making a library card and, most of them, have a flexible schedule.
So, instead of going shopping or watching a movie at the cinema, consider going to your local library and to explore its collection. Perhaps you will uncover a passion you don’t ever know you had.
To wrap things up, as you can see, it’s not hard to save money. All you need is a little imagination and keeping an open mind when it comes to personal finances, entertainment, and life, in general.