Friday, May 6, 2016

Easy Tips to Save money, Stop living Paycheck to Paycheck

I am very fortunate that Justin and I have come to a point where we have savings and life isn't paycheck to paycheck anymore. We haven't done anything too crazy to get here, and we really haven't been blessed with 100% good luck. What we did do was work really hard to understand our needs versus wants and we learned to decipher how important each are to our day to day life as well as for the long term. Knowing your wants and needs is key to making smart financial decisions.

Know Your Wants Versus Needs

For example the camping equipment we bought wasn't cheap but we shopped for the best price for the quality we wanted, which gave us confidence in the money we spent. Camping is a fun thing to do but what is most valuable to me about it is the aspect of having a hobby together with the person I love. This is a good example of a long term want. This long term want keeps us satiated and will help keep us saving together. The bonus is our camping kit is also an emergency bug out kit [which is kind of a need for every house.]

The needs are my favorite to shop for, because they drain your wallet month to month and it feels like you can't do anything about it [BUT YOU CAN!]. What does your house need to run like a well oiled machine? Mine needs: Garbage bags, coffee, cat litter, cat food and human food.

Is 4 cents a big deal? YES.

I know my house will continue needing garbage bags. Sure I compost all my compostables, I reuse containers, But there are some left over that need to be trashed and recycled. My weekly trash bag is only about the size of a basketball [containing mostly chicken carcass] and a full bag of recyclables. With an educated understanding of my bag needs I bought a bulk box of 1000 12-16 gallon .29 mil. Uline trash liners. After shipping this cost me about $60 bucks.  My average trash bag from the grocery cost over $0.10 each, these cost me $0.06 each, It may not sound like a big savings, BUT In the course of the time it takes me to use those I will save $40. 

Exact same product, Better price.

My cats eat Purina Naturals [It's not the top of the line or the bottom of the barrel]. I found the best deal on I bought 3 13lb bags. they started at $13.42 per bag [But I only paid $10.84 per bag].

I saved $1.98 using debit instead of credit and for buying 3 bags,
$0.03 opting out of free return,
$5.76 15% off coupon and free shipping.

The original total of $1.03 per pound was reasonable and still the best deal I could find, but the amended total of $0.83 per pound is a steal. My local grocery store charges $1.58 per pound.

You may also enjoy my post on Using online shopping to save on household bills

If every purchase you make is looking out for the future You`s wallet, you will be much more likely to succeed. Don't pay more for less because the large price tag has a scary amount on it. Always do the math. Be educated on what your household needs. There is a reason businesses buy bulk items and those items are becoming more and more available to the common household.

Be your own advocate! Ask questions, research for answers. How much per pound? Per Ounce? Per piece? Future you will thank you.