Are you struggling to find more money each month? You may not have an income problem so much as an expense problem.
While saving $1 here and there may not seem like much, it certainly adds up over time. Did you realize if you can cut $17/day over the course of a month you could save over $500 a month??
Read on for a list of 60+ ways you can save on monthly expenses.
Examine Current Monthly Expenses
If you are looking at things to cut to save money, you first need to know where your money is going. Doing a review of the last few month’s expenses is a great way to figure out where the holes are in your budget.
I was shocked to find that our biggest hole was eating out. I’m not even talking about going out to eat. It was grabbing convenience items. We were spending a few hundred dollars a month on grabbing a Gatorade here and there for my kid’s practices. Or a quick snack while we were running around.
Bottom line– you need to know where your money’s going so you can focus on those areas in addition to trying to find extra ways to cut back.
Cutting monthly expenses– where can I save money?
This seems obvious and not applicable, but what sort of list would this be without it?
Food is one of the biggest budget busters around. Meal planning and prep are your best friends.
I ditched cable and switched to Netflix because it was much cheaper, but if you are cutting your budget to the bone– Netflix has to go.
This is 100% budget and situation-dependent. For some families who use this as a movie subscription service, subscription services for baby products, dog food etc– you would end up saving money even with having to pay from Prime– but you absolutely need to run the numbers to find out.
Hulu. Disney +, Youtube TV, etc. Pick your favorite and move on to save even more money every month.
Do people still have cable with all these subscription services around?? If you’re not ready to ditch cable– consider giving your provider a call and see about what you can do to reduce your cable bill and that monthly payment.
Raising your deductible is an easy way to lower your cost of insurance– whether it’s car insurance or home insurance. However, either save the deductible in a sinking fund, or make sure you can cover the new higher deductible in case something happens.
I see these pop up everywhere, but this is just a box of miscellaneous stuff you can 100% do without if you are cutting back on your budget.
Choose Kindle Unlimited vs Purchasing multiple books– or utilize the library.
I 100% am in love with Kindle Unlimited. If you read a <em>ton </em>(like me!) this is the best $9 you’ve ever spent. That being said, the library is free, so do the headwork and math on that one.
Music subscription services like Apple Music.
Going out to the movies
Ya’ll give it a minute and it’ll make its way to streaming services where it’ll be included in a subscription you are already paying for. Or if you really want to hit the movies, make it a matinee.
Movie snacks. (eat before you go).
For most families, you pay more money for snacks than you do on tickets.
Utilize Gas Buddy.
An easy way to save at the pump. Gas Buddy helps you find the cheapest gas in your area.
Organize errands or combine trips to maximize gas savings.
When you combine trips for errands, you not only save gas, but you save time.
Expensive salon services
Whether it’s coloring your own hair or mani-pedi’s– don’t be scared to DIY.
Buy clothing at consignment. Check out ThredUp It’s an online consignment shop. The reason I am in love with this website is that not only am I getting a great deal on gently used, or never worn items that are available for great prices, but they also will accept your clothes.
They will send you what they call their “Clean Out bag”. It gets processed (they go through everything) and then they’ll send you an email with your earnings.
The first 14 days, you can use your credit to purchase items from thredUP.com.
After 14 days, you can cash out using PayPal or a thredUP Visa Prepaid Card. I’m kind of obsessed with this website.
Bonus! If you sign up through my link above you get a $10 credit.
It’s easy to get carried away with paid options for apps– especially when you are looking at a few dollars.
Consider that those few dollars may not seem like much at the time, but they have the potential to add up over time.
If you are struggling with paycheck to paycheck living it’s more important than ever to shift your mindset from “only a few dollars” to “man! That’s $3 for convenience– is that worth it??”
Get outside. Watch Youtube. Go to a city park. So many good free options that you 100% don’t need a gym membership.
Change your cell phone plan
We moved to prepaid and love it! We saved about $30/month with our switch. There are lots of great prepaid options now. Check out what your area has to offer.
These usually also don’t carry contracts so if you are unhappy with service, there’s nothing stopping you from switching and carrying your number over.
Food delivery service
This is a bit of a 2 for 1. Not only are you essentially eating out (which is more expensive than cooking for yourself) BUT you are also carrying the expense of tipping your delivery person as well.
If you are looking for quick less expensive options, with a takeout feel– why not try a frozen pizza? Or grab a rotisserie chicken from your local deli?
Pre-packaged and convenience packaging
With a little preparation you can DIY convenience items for snacks and meals and save tons of money at the same time.
Skip Brand Name Products
Store brand and generic products are typically just as good as name brand without the hefty price tag.
In some cases they are even made in the same factory!!
Drive a cheaper car
There is alot more to consider when purchasing a car aside from just the price tag.
The cost to insure the car. Maintenance costs. Fuel economy– how much does it cost to drive it.
Take all of these expenses into consideration when choosing your next vehicle.
I’ll be honest, dry cleaning is a deal breaker for new clothing. I recognize that not everyone can do that, but do your research. I found work shirts and pants for my husband (business professional) that I can machine wash. Yes, I do have to be ironed, but still. Save that money, honey!
Skip the sodas, juices, smoothies
All of these low dollar ticket items can eat up your discretionary money–fast! Don’t be afraid to carry water around with you and skip those $1 McDonald’s cokes while you’re on the go.
Skip buying bottled water
Invest in a good water bottle and skipt the recurring cost associated with disposable waters.
Expensive cleaning products and detergents
DIY detergent and cleaning products. White vinegar and baking soda can carry you far my friend!
Skip Sam’s, Costco, BJ’s, or other wholesale clubs
These memberships only save you money if you are using them regularly and on items you use often.
If you aren’t using up those items–it’s not worth it and can lead to alot of waste and overspending.
Know before you go what you need and will use.
Skip expensive makeup and try the drugstore version.
Skip lawn service
Bring your own oil when you get your oil changed.
Also, check for coupons.
Did you know that you can protest your property taxes and that there are companies (in exchange for a fee) will do it on your behalf? For our county, it was as simple as a new appraisal. This saved us a few hundred dollars every year.
Interest rates on credit cards
Be on the lookout for balance transfer promotions. You can often save yourself hundreds a year with the 0% introductory offer. Use with caution, you don’t want to start racking up expenses on both cards!
Name brand baby diapers + wipes.
Make the switch to store brand or generic wipes. You can save a ton of money on this expense alone.
Unplug appliances that aren’t being used.
If that’s not for you, consider smart outlets. You can set a timer, use wifi and/or Alexa if you are technically inclined.
Ditch disposable items
Ditch paper plates, paper towels, etc.
Switch to LED light bulbs.
instead of buying a new bottle of soap, detergent, etc. every time.
Travel and vacations.
If you need a getaway, consider a staycation and get busy where you are!
Video & Online games.
Not only is it bad for your health– they are crazy expensive. If you are a smoker, take a look at how much money you are smoking every year. (#nojudgements #justsayin)
Hot water for laundry.
Switch to washing your laundry in cold water– they even make laundry detergent specifically for cold washing.
Stop financing cars
Similarly to ditching debt. Give paying cash a try and skip the interest on car loans.
If you use batteries regularly, why not consider rechargeable options to save money?
Turn A/C up during the day while gone from home.
Consider a programmable thermostat to help keep costs down while you’re away from home for the day.
Calling the repairman
Youtube is full of how-to videos so you can do it yourself! I feel that I should add– where it’s save to do so. I probably wouldn’t attempt to do some complicated electrical work in my house, but I feel confident installing my own ceiling fan.
Buying all your produce from the grocery store–check out Farmer’s Markets!
Double check your bills and be on the lookout for promotions. These are really easy ways to put money back into your wallet.
Less shampoo, less hand soap, fewer paper products, less gas, less A/C, etc.
One of my favorite shampoo/soap hacks is putting a rubber band around the stem of the pump so you only get about a 1/2 pump every time!
Eat less meat
Why not try incorporate vegetarian meals during the week. Meat is one of the more expensive parts of any grocery budget.
Single serving anything.
(Not so) Hot showers
Consider adjusting the heat setting on your hot water heater.
High priced housing
Housing expenses can easily eat up between 25-35% of your monthly budget.
Consider downsizing or changing up your neighborhood. What do you really need? What’s important to you?
Skip the dryer sheets
Why not switch to these awesome wool dryer balls!
If you love having a scent you can add a few drops of your favorite essential oil. I have these and I LOVE them. They also cut drying time down 25% also saving you on electricity.
Drying on high heat.
Throw a dry towel in the dryer when drying a load of laundry– it’ll cut down the amount of time it takes to try the load.
(Side Note: not that this has ever happened to me *cough, cough* but if you don’t get to the dryer in time to take your clothes out right when it’s finished, you can take a damp washcloth and throw it in with the clothing and let it run for 5-10 minutes and you can help release the wrinkles. )
If you are eating out, switch to water.
Most beverages are between $1-3 for just soda or tea. For my family of 5, that’s between $5-$15.
I hope you’ve found a few ways you can save a little extra money every month! I’d love to hear your money-saving ideas and where you’ve cut back. Please comment below!