There is an unspoken rule between Jerry and I regarding our money. No matter how it is made, any money we bring in between us goes toward paying the bills and other household necessities. But, if it is gift money, we are allowed to spend it any way we want. That’s just how it is.
Unless we’re flat broke. Which is always. And then the gift money pays the bills.
I’m usually able to preserve my stash, however, by hiding it in my sock drawer. Out of sight, out of mind, right? And somehow, the bills still get paid. Amazing.
Anyways, I do have a point I’m getting at.
I could buy a lot of things with my gift money. Clothes. Girly stuff. That Nikon I’ve been dying to get my hands on. But instead, I try to spend my money on something that will save us money.
- I’ve bought Pyrex containers with lids so that I don’t have to buy Saran Wrap anymore. I haven’t bought plastic wrap in almost two years.
- I’ve bought a bread machine at Goodwill so I can learn to bake homemade bread. And I’ve bought bread pans to bake my loaves in.
- I’ve bought cloth diapers so I don’t have to use disposables.
- I’ve bought rechargeable batteries and a charger, so I don’t have to keep buying new ones.
- I’ve bought a dehydrator, a wheat grinder, a couple of canners and canning supplies.
- I’ve bought seeds or plants so that we can grow more food and herbs. And I’ve bought soapmaking and cheesemaking supplies.
Why do I buy these things? Because I know that each of them will replace the need for me to spend money on something else. Every year, when my birthday or other special occasions roll around and I get money, I put it toward something that will benefit my family.
Which is probably why I’m still wearing clothes I’ve had since high school. And I just turned 30. (Oh yeah, last week I celebrated my 30th birthday. Happy Birthday to me!)
I guess I felt like sharing this tonight ’cause I have a nice wad of birthday money stuffed in my drawer between a pair of ankle socks, and I’m considering how to spend it.
Maybe this one time I’ll splurge and go to Goodwill to look for a new skirt, or two. ‘Cause seriously, I need clothes. Although, I really am more interested in finding ways to benefit our family as a whole.
My loved ones keep trying to treat me to getting my hair highlighted, or my nails done, or a massage or something.
But I mean it with all of my heart when I say I have absolutely no interest in that kind of stuff. It’s a complete waste of money to me. Nope, I’d rather splurge on reusable canning lids, thank you.
So the next time you have gift money to blow, maybe it’s time that you think of how you can really be the best steward of that cash and use it on something that will profit you more in the long run.
This simple trick has snowballed into some real savings for us. And the less we need to spend, the less we can live off of, and the less dependent we are on others for our well being.
And that’s the ultimate goal.
Here are a few more tips for how you can spend money to save money (or hey – just save money in general!) on the homestead.
Choose the Right Savings Account, CD, or Investment Account for Those Goals
When it comes to spending money to save money, there are a number of options available. You’ve got to put your money in the right place if you want it to do something for you.
However, not all accounts are created equal. It’s important to choose the right account for your goals in order to maximize your savings.
For example, if you’re looking to save for a short-term goal, such as a vacation or a new car, a high-yield savings account may be the best option. These accounts typically offer higher interest rates than other accounts, allowing you to earn more on your deposited funds.
If you’re saving for a longer-term goal, such as retirement, you may want to consider an investment account. These accounts offer the potential for higher returns over time, but they also come with the risk of loss.
As such, it’s important to carefully consider your goals and risk tolerance before choosing an investment account.
By carefully selecting the right account for your needs, you can ensure that your money is working hard for you and helping you reach your financial goals.
Consider Meal Planning and Ordering Groceries Online
In these difficult economic times, many people are looking for ways to save money. One way to cut down on expenses is to plan meals and order groceries online.
Again, you’ll be spending some money here – but by saving time and planning ahead, this can help you to use the food you have on hand more efficiently and avoid wasting money on impulse purchases.
In addition, ordering groceries online can help you to compare prices and find the best deals. Many websites also offer coupons and discounts that can further reduce your grocery bill. By taking advantage of these two simple strategies, you can save yourself both time and money.
Consider a Move to a Nicer Area
Most people think that the only way to save money is to tighten their belts and cut back on their spending.
However, there are other ways to save money that are often overlooked. One of the easiest ways to save money is to simply move to a nicer area.
The cost of living in a high-end neighborhood is often much lower than people expect, and the quality of life is significantly higher.
In addition, residents of nicer areas tend to be more financially responsible and have better credit scores, which can lead to lower interest rates on loans and credit cards. Your property taxes might be slightly higher, but what you lose there you will likely gain (and then some) in savings.
As a result, making a move to a nicer area can be a great way to save money.
Buy Higher Quality Items
When it comes to deciding what to spend your money on, it can be tempting to go for the cheapest option.
However, in many cases, it is actually more economical to invest in higher quality items.
This is because higher quality items often last longer, meaning you will have to replace them less often. In addition, higher quality items often have better features and performance, which can save you time and money in the long run.
For example, a higher quality vacuum cleaner may cost more upfront, but it will likely last longer and do a better job than a cheaper model. Choosing higher quality items may help you save money in the long run.
Skip Fast Fashion
When it comes to fashion, there are two main ways to shop: fast fashion and slow fashion. Fast fashion is all about buying the latest trends at an affordable price, while slow fashion is about investing in high-quality pieces that will last for years.
While fast fashion may be cheaper in the short-term, it’s not always the most economical choice in the long run. Here’s why:
First of all, fast fashion is unsustainable. The garments are often made from cheap, synthetic materials that are not biodegradable.
They’re also generally mass-produced in sweatshops, using harmful dyes and chemicals. As a result, fast fashion takes a toll on both people and the environment.
Second, fast fashion is not built to last. The garments are designed for quick consumption and often fall apart after just a few washes. That means you’ll have to buy more clothes more often, which can end up costing you more in the long run than if you had invested in higher-quality pieces to begin with.
So, if you’re looking to save money and be more sustainable, skip fast fashion and opt for slow fashion instead.
Purchase Memberships to Save Money
Any experienced shopper knows that membership programs can be a great way to save money on your favorite products.
Whether you’re signing up for a loyalty program at your local grocery store or investing in a subscription service for your favorite magazine, a membership can help you to save money in the long run.
Many memberships also come with additional benefits, such as exclusive discounts and early access to new products. So if you’re looking to cut costs and get more for your money, consider signing up for a store or subscription membership today. You may be surprised at how much you can save.
Buy More – But Buy in Bulk
Back in the days before supermarkets and big box stores, people had to buy their food from local specialty shops. This meant that they often had to buy small amounts of each item, which could be expensive.
Today, we have the option to buy in bulk, which can save us money in the long run. When we buy more of an item at once, we can get a discount, and we don’t have to worry about running out for a while.
Bulk buying also means that we don’t have to make as many trips to the store, which saves time and money. So next time you need to stock up on your favorite items, remember that buying in bulk can be a great way to save money.
Buy a Home vs. Renting
When it comes to the question of whether to buy a home or rent, there is no easy answer – and this is somewhat of a contentious issue, to be honest with you.
There are pros and cons to both choices, and the decision ultimately depends on each individual’s circumstances. For some people, buying a home makes financial sense.
Over time, the monthly mortgage payments will build equity in the property, and this can be used as a downpayment on another home or saved as retirement income. Additionally, property taxes and homeowners insurance can provide significant tax breaks.
On the other hand, renting offers flexibility and freedom that may be ideal for people who are not ready to commit to a long-term mortgage. In addition, renters are not responsible for maintenance and repairs, which can be a major advantage.
Ultimately, the best decision is the one that meets your individual needs and financial circumstances but it’s something to consider if you’re interested in saving money.
Get the Right Insurance
Many people believe that insurance is a waste of money. After all, why pay monthly premiums for something that you may never use?
However, insurance can actually be a very wise investment, particularly if you are likely to face expensive medical bills in the event of an accident or illness. In addition, many employers require employees to have some form of health insurance.
As a result, it is important to make sure that you have the right kind of insurance to protect yourself and your family. Otherwise, you may end up paying far more than you ever anticipated.
Consider When It’s Worth Spending Money to Save Time
In today’s fast-paced world, it can be tempting to spend a little extra money in order to save time.
After all, time is precious and there never seems to be enough of it. However, it’s important to consider whether the time-saving solution is actually worth the money. In some cases, it may be cheaper and more effective to do something yourself or to wait a little longer for a free solution.
For example, instead of hiring a professional cleaner, you could deep clean your house once a month and save yourself some money.
Alternatively, you could wait until an item goes on sale instead of paying full price for it immediately.
That said, if you find that it’s taking you hours upon hours to clean your house each week – hours that could be spent doing something more productive (or even something that makes you money), then that time is not being well spent and it may be time to hire a cleaner.
If you want to wait to see if an item will go on sale but have to keep running back to the store to check its price, again – you’re not saving much money here.
By taking a moment to think about whether a time-saving solution is worth the money, you can help to ensure that you are making the best decision for your individual needs.
Should You Get Professional Help?
If you’re trying to decide whether or not to get professional help with your finances, there are a few things to consider. First, do you have the time and knowledge to effectively manage your money? If not, then it may be worth paying for professional help.
A financial planner can help you set up a budget, invest your money, and plan for retirement. They can also offer guidance if you experience financial challenges. While hiring a professional may cost you upfront, it could save you money in the long run.
Second, what are your financial goals? If you’re trying to get out of debt or save for a major purchase, then getting professional help can increase your chances of success. Finally, consider your comfort level.
If managing your finances makes you anxious or stressed, then professional help can provide peace of mind. If you’re still not sure whether or not to hire a professional, talking to one can give you a better idea of what they can do for you and whether they’re worth the investment.
A few more money-saving tips…
Create a Budget
It’s no secret that saving money can be difficult. But with a little planning and effort, it is possible to create a budget that will help you save money and reach your financial goals.
The first step is to track your spending for a month so you can see where your money is going.
Next, figure out how much you need to live on each month and set aside money for savings and debts. Then, create a realistic plan for reducing your expenses in areas like eating out, entertainment, and shopping.
Finally, stick to your plan by monitoring your progress and making adjustments as necessary. By taking these steps, you can create a budget that will help you save money and achieve your financial goals.
Record All of Your Expenses
One of the best ways to save money is to keep track of your expenses. By knowing where your money is going, you can find areas where you can cut back. There are a number of ways to track your expenses, from paper and pencil to apps on your phone.
The key is to find a system that works for you and then stick with it. At the end of each day or week, take a few minutes to record your expenditures. Include everything from groceries and gas to entertainment and clothes.
Once you have a good idea of where your money is going, you can start to make changes. Maybe you’ll eat out less often or shop at cheaper stores.
Whatever the changes, tracking your expenses is a great way to save money.
One of the best ways to save money is to set specific goals.
Determine how much you need to save on a monthly or yearly basis, and then make a plan to reach that goal. Automate your savings by setting up a direct deposit from your paycheck into a savings account, or make regular transfers from your checking account.
Once you have reached your goal, you can put the money towards a larger purchase, like a down payment on a house or a new car, or use it to fund your retirement.
Whatever your goals are, setting and reaching them can help you stay on track with your finances and reach your long-term financial goals.
Though you may be hesitant to spend money in an effort to save money, sometimes it is the best option. Follow these tips, and you’ll be on your way to spending less while keeping more of your hard-earned cash.
Have you tried any of these methods? Let us know how they worked for you in the comments below!
A city girl learning to homestead on an acre of land in the country. Wife and homeschooling mother of four. Enjoying life, and everything that has to do with self sufficient living.