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If your needs are a little more short-term, here are some ideas to keep from spending the money you already have, and make what you do spend go farther: save money
29. Try Envelope Budgeting
Credit cards help you avoid the pain of purchase, which may cause you to spend more. With cash you become more aware of what you’re spending. In addition, you can divide your cash into envelopes with allowances for different purchases, which will ensure you don’t spend too much in one area.
30. Calculate by Hours
When trying to decide if something is worth buying, try thinking of the cost in terms of how long it takes you to make that money. This can help you get a sense of the true value of your money.
31. Think Twice About Sales
While some sales are good deals, there’s no sale that’s going to cost you less than not buying the item at all. When purchasing an item on sale, ask yourself if you would have bought the item if it were full price, and if the answer is no, skip it.
32. Buy Used
Local thrift stores and online auction sites like eBay offer everything from clothes to electronics at stellar discounts. You can get slightly used high quality items at a fraction of the cost of their newer counterparts.
33. Go to the Library
Some people don’t realize that their local library is a great resource for free entertainment, especially for kids. Many offer movies and games in addition to books, as well as free events and readings for kids every week.
34. Buy Generic
Check the ingredients on brand-name medicines and foods, as they’re frequently the exact same as the less expensive options out there. If you can’t detect any difference in quality, you don’t necessarily need to buy the name brand.
35. Eat In
It can be tempting to eat out every night, but you can make eating at home more appetizing by making eating at home delicious, fun, and easy. Try to cooking new recipes, setting up a picnic, or simply meal-prepping.
36. Use the 24 Hour Rule
This is similar to the 30 day rule, but for less expensive purchases. Wait a day before buying a small item and you may find you didn’t want it after all.
37. Designate No-Spend Days
Challenge yourself and your family to go one day a week without buying anything, from your morning coffee to a movie ticket. You’ll reduce your spending and become more aware of how mindlessly you make small purchases.
38. Go Outside
The great outdoors is almost always free, and with the added benefit of free exercise, the outdoors is an incredible resource. Try going on a walk around your neighborhood or taking a day trip to a local sight.
39. Take Public Transportation
Try replacing your drive to work one day a week. This can save you both money and time because you can get other things done on the bus while saving money on gas and wear and tear on your car.
40. Clothes Swap
Before you buy a new outfit, get some friends together and swap them old pieces you don’t want anymore. You can also exchange kids clothes and toys with neighbors or family members.
41. Drink Less Bottled Water
Bottled water is almost 300x the cost of the same amount of tap water and the average American spends about $100 a year on it. Consider switching to a filter, and let it pay for itself.