Turning Crumbs Into Dough – 7 Easy Ways To Stretch Your Money

When I’m helping my clients restructure or create their household budget I have to become real creative with showing them ways to save money. Some of these great ideas come from my many years of hanging out with my Mom and Aunt. Some are innovative things I’ve learned over the years and from my many mentors. Nevertheless, I enjoy helping people save money, especially when gas, food, and utility prices are forever increasing and we all know we can’t do without these important necessities. Below are the seven ways to save, in no particular order.

Savings #1 – (“Shop til you drop”) Although everyone by now understands that clipping coupons is a great way to save. Did you know that shopping on a Wednesday, Thursday, and sometimes Fridays can create an even bigger savings? Talk to your favorite grocery store’s customer service desk clerk to find out when they will put out their “manager special” items. Usually these items varies, but they are some great deals! Grocery stores are required to discard excess items by the expiration dates, so just before that date arrives,you can be the lucky saver.

Savings #2 – (“You scratch their back and They’ll scratch yours”) I’m sure you have a few of those little discount club key chain cards. Most drug, department, and grocery stores offer them to their customers for free. The purpose of the card is to track your spending habits in exchange, for discounts and coupons. I especially enjoy the perks I get from my local grocery store called, Krogers. Not only do I get monthly coupons for buying items I would routinely buy anyway, but I also get 10 cents per gallon off my gas purchase after accumulating a 100 points from my purchases. Recently they added the same benefit for all Shell’s gas stations. As an extra bonus, Kroger’s credit card holders,can save 15 cents per gallon on gas when they use their credit card instead of other payment methods along with the same 100 points from purchases.

Savings #3 – (“Brand name clothing at bargain prices”) Some call these Thrift stores and swear against them. However, I can assure you that some of their items are popular brand name clothing being sold new with the tags still on them, while most are considered “lightly used”. I’ve bought everything from designer shoes, clothing, pursues, and furniture from these stores and have saved a bundle! I’d smile a big smile when someone complimented me on my cute red Timberland boots. The money I’ve saved is enormous. I would have made the guru of money saving, Clark Howard proud. Check in your local area, I’m sure you will find a great thrift store near you.

Savings #4 – (“Spring cleaning Is not just for spring anymore”) Every season requires at least a few new clothing items. Especially when it comes to kids. So my family and I make it a point to go through our closets every season. the rules are, if you haven’t worn it in a while or really don’t like it as much as you use to, then let it go. So I make a trip to my local consignment store and turn our clothes into cash. They go through the items and pick out what they can resale while the other items get donated to charity. What a great concept! Clean out your closet and make money at the same time. When the items sale I have the option of cashing out or using the money towards items in their store. Either way I win and save.

Savings #5 – (“The survey says”) This great idea is jumping like hotcakes all over the Internet, so be careful. I use a rewards company called “Inbox Dollars”. I really like the service and I’ve received a check from them in the past, so I consider them to be a reputable company. The basic concept is, they email numerous ads regarding their sponsors products or services you review the ads while accumulate money. They will also send you surveys to fill out and again you earn money. There’s no pressure to buy anything or take the surveys, it’s totally up to you whenever you have time..

Savings #6 – (“Now that’s entertainment”) I’m sure you’ve seen these thick little booklets being sold for fundraisers. They are called “Entertainment Books.” Inside of them are an array of coupons assembled for your particular city. The coupons range from food and drinks to movies and car rentals. I love this book and have used them for traveling, movies, fast food, sit down restaurants, bowling, and car rentals. The book is good for a full year, so you have plenty of time to use it and save big. But here’s the catch, you need to keep the book with you. Leaving it at home is a total loss, so try keeping it in your car. I keep my book in the car as it has proven to be a great passenger and has saved me a bundle.

Savings #7 – (“Stay hydrated and help the environment”) Carrying a 5-gallon water jug is not the easiest thing to do. But when I realized how much money I was spending on water delivery or individual water bottles, I knew there had to be a better way of keeping water available for my family. So after buying a water dispenser and two 5 gallon water jugs, I decided that while at the grocery store I would re-fill my own jugs. This cost a mere 30 cents per gallon compared to about $2.50 per gallon for delivery service and 50 cents to $1 for individual bottles. My family and I refill our own BPA-Free water bottles on a daily basis. Saving another $1.25 on each individual water purchase and helping the environment by cutting down on the level of plastic in our trash waste.

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