Sometimes you just need to find a little extra money in your budget. Maybe you want to pay off debt, establish an emergency fund, or just purchase a special gift. Don’t worry! There are plenty of easy ways to save money on everyday expenses in almost every area of your life. Adding just a couple of these strategies can be a big help.
Saving money on food
According to government statistics, the average Canadian family spends close to $6,000 a year on groceries. If you want to cut that figure a little, there are many ways to do so. Saving a little money here can really add up fast.
- Use coupons – They are easily available online, through phone apps, and in newspapers and magazines. Use them when an item is on sale or with other discounts to save even more.
- Buy store brands or generic – A lot of the price difference for name brand products accounts for advertising. Store brands are often just as good and many are packaged by the major food producers.
- Eat a few vegetarian or vegan meals.
- Avoid fast food – Dining out is expensive, especially if you have a family. It’s cheaper and healthier to eat at home.
Easy ways to save money on clothes
Clothing purchases are often seasonal, but may require a large amount of money all at once. Here are a few ways to make it a little more budget friendly.
- Used clothing that is in good shape – This is especially good for kids’ clothing or special occasion clothes you are unlikely to wear more than a couple of times. Friends and family, garage sales, thrift stores, and consignment shops are all good sources.
- Shop the clearance rack – Seasonal items like winter coats or summer clothes can often be found for huge discounts toward the end of the season. If you know you’ll need it for next year, buy it ahead of time for a much better price.
- Shop discount stores – For items that are replaced frequently, like socks, there may not be much of a quality difference. If you are really in need of something, the cheaper prices can be a big help.
- Shop sales – Find out when the items you need are cheapest and spread out your purchases a little. For example, jeans are often at their lowest prices of the year during back to school sales, watch the ads and buy then.
Other easy ways to save money
- Take public transportation – It’s cheaper than buying a car and then paying for car insurance and parking. It’s also a good temporary option if you are trying to save for a car.
- Get a bike – Faster than walking and cheaper than the bus, a bike can be a convenient solution in urban areas during warmer months. It’s also good exercise!
- Tackle a DIY project – Many basic home maintenance and repair tasks are well within the capabilities of the average person with good instructions and proper tools. Start small and do your research if you are inexperienced.
- Make your own décor items – Consider making curtains, pillows, or a piece of decorative art. If you’re really adventurous, you can even make your own furniture. There are plenty of online tutorials for just about any kind of project and most require only basic crafting or sewing skills.
There are plenty of easy ways to save money even if you’re on a tight budget. But if you need some extra help with personal budgeting or credit counselling, contact Credit Counselling Services of Atlantic Canada today.