Tuesday, April 13, 2010

25 ways to save some green

Could you use some extra cash after the bills are paid?  Maybe you need to save up for a birthday or holiday? I'm sure you all can and even if you don't need anything, saving money is always a good thing. About every 6 months I try to come up with a good list of things you can do to save money. Lets see how many of you do these things or will do these things.

1.  Stop buying plastic sandwich bags/storage bags. For lunches use fabric sandwich bags. Now days you can find these in all natural stores. If not try online at reusablebagssnacktaxi, or look for them at Etsy.

2.  Stop buying aluminum foil. Start saving the stuff you have now and reuse it as many times as you can. Or try just using metal lids from pots. Its going on 2 years since I have purchased any.

3.  No more air fresheners, plug in's or automatic fresheners. Just open up your windows or burn a candle. Biggest waste of money plus those things are filled with toxic synthetic oils.

4.  No more spice packets. Try looking up these at Recipezaar . You will save money and save yourself form preservatives and control your salt intake.

5. Stop buying laundry soap and make your own. A $5 investment will get you started.

6.  No more dryer sheets. Just make 2 balls from aluminum foil and toss those in the dryer.

7.  No plastic trash bags.  Yes you read this right. If you recycle everything possible and compost everything possible, you will need no trash bags. I take my trash out once a week and we never fill it up. Since there is no liquids or food in our trash there is no need for a bag. I just take the trash out and rinse it out with water once in a while.

8.  Stop buying cleaners.  Try making your own.

9.  No more cable or dish network. Have it shut off and love your family time. Now days you can watch movies on Hulu, watch favorite tv shows on their network websites, or rent movies for as low as $1 from places like Redbox. Regular TV is much better now then when you were little. You get a 24 hour kids channel and about a dozen others.

10.  No more eating out. This one alone will save you a ton of money.

11.  Walk anywhere possible whenever possible within 1 mile from home. Less gas used means less money to buy gas. Try walking or biking. Yes you were born with legs for a reason!

12.  Hang dry your clothes. Got string and a nail? You have a easy clothes line! Put a loop at the end of the string so you can take it down anytime you want. Out of sight out of mind! This will save you up to $20 a month.

13.  Turn the thermostat down!!! 55 at night and 65-67 during the day. Put on a sweatshirt, socks and slippers. Plus gives you reason to snuggle. You will thank me later when you get your heating bill.

14.  No more new stuff. Try to find anything you need in a thrift store or garage sale before you buy it new. This is always my rule. Buying new is only if you absolutely cannot find it new. I recently had to buy 4 pairs of jeans new (ugg!) because I could not find any used.

15.  Get rid of disposables. No more paper towels, paper plates, paper cups, or to go anything! Just use your own and wash them. Yes even for birthday parties!

16.  Never refuse anything given. I always accept clothing, household goods, etc from friends or family. I rarely have to buy clothes because of this. In return I give away all our clothes and anything else I want to get rid of. Helps out in more ways than one.

17.  No more medicines unless its really needed. Simple colds can be taken care of with vitamins, honey, tea, and eating healthy. There are always natural ways to take care of any ailment at Earthclinic.  Its my go to site for everything!

18.  No more Sunday papers! Each week you will get a free paper on your door step. Now days they even come with coupons! Plus your local stores ad's will be in there too. You can also go on any brands website and print out coupons. There's always a way to get around everything!

19.  Share a garbage service with your neighbor. This saves us $13 each month. My neighbor and I split the bill. We each recycle so much and compost everything that we just split our service. Never thought of that did you!

20.  Take a shower when needed instead of daily. Now were not dirty people! I just wash when I need it. If my hair gets dingy or dirty I take a shower.This is the rule for our whole family. We do not roll around in the dirty, have dirty jobs, or sweat on a regular basis so we do not need to shower daily.  Just think about how much water and hair products you will save! Also when you do take a shower, put a limit on it!

21.  No more specialty coffee's! From now on make your own and take your own! This alone will save you a ton of money. Now days you can find organic coffee in bulk just about anywhere. Its way cheaper than buying your coffee from your local coffee shop. If you do need to grab a coffee, take your own mug and most places give a discount if you do bring your own mug.

22.  No more babysitters. Try switching with a friend/family member/neighbor. I do this with many people and have yet to pay any babysitters. Just remember to babysit in return. This alone saves a ton of money for people with many kids.

23.  Keep the lights off as much as possible. Open up drapes and let the sunshine in!

24.  Turn off the water when brushing your teeth.

25.  Take my clothe wipe challenge and save a bundle on toilet paper each month.


Anonymous said...

Hi, I have a question about number 6-using foil for dryer sheets. I have never heard of this, and was wondering if this would be like using those dryer balls or tennis balls to fluff up the laundry. Does this help with static? I never use laundry sheets, so was just curious as to the benefits of the foil. Thanks for posting some great ideas. I am going to try to make a few more changes based on your list.
adomesticprincess in Portland, Oregon

Surviving and thriving on pennies said...

adomesticprincess-I heard of this from a friend a while back. She said that it keeps static down and pretty much does the same thing as the dryer balls or tennis balls. I have dryer balls (I found at Rite Aid dollar section for $3) so I have yet to try the aluminum foil. I would be afraid that the tennis balls would heat up and stink my clothes up...? Does anyone use them? Do they smell your clothes up? I stopped using dryer sheets a few years ago and love the savings in my pocket from not buying them. My clothes are perfect smelling and never have build up on them anymore.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the info. I don't use the dryer sheets because of my allergies to the heavy scents in them. I also don't like the oily feel that they leave on clothes. I have never used the dryer balls or the tennis balls. I really couldn't see the purpose for their use. Thought I might be missing in on something good, so thought I would ask. I make sure to shake my laundry out before tossing in the dryer (rather than just throwing it in all packed together straight from the washer) and try not to let things get 100% dry. I find that cuts down on the static and ironing as well as energy use. The clothes dry faster when they are not tossed in the dryer in a big lump. Of course I try to line dry or use my drying racks as much as possible.
adomesticprincess in Oregon

Surviving and thriving on pennies said...

The dryer balls are just for keeping the clothes from sticking to each other and forming static. No other purpose that I can think of. Today I was able to dry 3 loads of laundry out on the line. Whahoo! I love the smell of my clothes when they are air dried.