Top 10 Quick Ways to Save a Buck

This is the first post in our series of quick money saving tips. To start, we have a top 10 list. Top 10s were an old standby in my Golden Words days (you can check them out here if they get their website working again). But to stay on topic, here are 10 money saving tips and tricks we came up with:

    1. Buy in bulk, usually. You will almost always get a better unit price by buying larger packages of items, but if you aren’t using the extra whatevers (cereal, batteries, etc.) then you spent extra money for nothing. But it’s always a good idea to check, and our Unit Pricer app can help with this.
    2. Bring a reusable water bottle with you. Plastic water bottles are both bad for the environment and bad for your wallet. Bottles of water at stores and stands costs a dollar or more, when you could be refilling your own bottle basically for free. Unless the water in your city is of poor quality, filling your own bottles is a much better way to go.

      Even at a food court, drinks can make up a significant fraction of the bill

      Even at a food court, drinks can make up a significant fraction of the bill

    3. Speaking of water, getting water instead of paying for drinks can save you $2-4 each time you eat at restaurant. Desserts can also be fairly pricey ranging from $3 to over $10 depending on the restaurant. You can have cake and ice cream at home for much less.
    4. Walk or bike when you can. Both driving an public transit can add up to be major expenses but walking and cycling have almost no marginal cost. Turning a few of your costly trips to free trips each week can add up to real savings. And you might decide you no longer need to spend on a gym membership.
    5. Monitor your utilities. Water and power bills are a fact of life for most of us, but even the smallest savings can add up over time.
    6. Pay off credit cards on time. Why pay any interest if you don’t have to. Enough said.
    7. Put off impulse purchases. If it doesn’t seem like a good idea when you get home, you just saved money you otherwise would have spent, if you still want it, you can buy it next time. In fact, this is what we had in mind when we developed Buy it Later, and it could help you too if you find putting off purchases hard to do.
    8. Make a list and stick to it. Similar to the last point, knowing what you are going to buy ahead of time makes it harder for you to accidentally go overbudget when you shop. If you enjoy on a whim, that’s fine, but to quote a gambling authority “know your limit, play within it.”
    9. Buy items when they are on special. Check your local flyers for good deals, and consider using the items on special as alternatives for what you usually buy. No, we don’t have an app for this yet, but there are services like Checkout 51 that can find you deals. On the other hand, buying stuff you weren’t otherwise going to just because it’s on sale is still a waste of money.
    10. Re-purpose old stuff before buying new stuff. This can be turning part of last night’s dinner into today’s sandwich or this can be turning an old jug into a scoop for gardening. Either way, this can save you money by making your current possessions go further and putting off when you need to buy new things.
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