The benefit of saving money isn’t to spend it elsewhere, it’s to fatten up your wallet. While couponing and shopping for deals may seem the best way to do so, these tips will actually put cash into your wallet.
Start a Business
According to Employment and Social Development Canada, in 2012 Canadians averaged a weekly gross paycheck of $867 per week and averaged 36.6 hours per week at work.
So many people are quick to tell others to get a second job if they need more money. But after factoring in the travel time to and from work, having to care for your family, volunteering, going to school, and having a portion of a social life, when would you have the time?
An alternate way to bring in money is to start your own business. You can work the hours you want, and receive pay based upon your own talents. So you can enjoy your hobbies and make money while doing so. For instance, if you love tennis, teach a few lessons on the weekend.
Become a Landlord
There are two ways you can easily become a landlord. First, you can do so the old fashion way. Purchase a home or building and rent the units out. The second way, which is more affordable for most, is to get a housemate.
Look at your home and consider how much you truly utilize it. Maybe you have space in your basement to turn into a suite. You could rent out the guest room or convert your office back into a bedroom. If you have a garage, you could do minor work and turn it into a mini-studio. Whatever it may be, there are plenty ways to bring in extra income under your roof.
Get Rid of Unwanted Items
Now quite the opposite of moving someone into your home, consider moving things out of your home. You can make a decent profit by getting rid of your unwanted items. One man’s junk is another man’s treasure. So go through your home and start finding items to list on Craigslist, Amazon, and EBay or host a yard sale. Amazon is especially great to get rid of gently used books. Here are a few tips to get you started with online listings.
Look around the sites and see what others have listed. Pay attention to their ads so you can write compelling ones yourself.
Know the rules of the sites, so you can repost yours and keep visible.
Post clear and crisp color photos of your items. Some people search for ads with pictures only.
Keep your pricing competitive. Keeping your listing 20% higher than anyone else is not going to get your item sold. A good rule of thumb is to add 20% to your firm price to allow room for negotiations.
Pair your items. For instance, sell a desk and chair together.
Make sure buyers are able to test your items. Have an electrical outlet available and a small mat with debris on it if you are selling a vacuum cleaner.
Advertise everywhere. Put ads in free classified papers, post flyers in grocery stores and laundry mats, and of course advertise online.
Work Out At Home
This won’t put money directly into your pocket, but it can give you extra money again. Cancel your expensive gym membership that you more than likely don’t use enough. You can workout at home or take your routine outdoors.
You can purchase a used treadmill, stream fitness videos online, or do Pilates at home with a friend. If you want to enjoy the outdoors, consider power-walking, jumping rope, or enroll in a sports activity.
Find a Cheaper Hobby
Not having a hobby for the sake of saving money is next to insane. You need to enjoy life. Now, expensive hobbies such as scuba diving, ballroom dancing, and antique car collecting, you may want to put aside into you come into a great deal of money. However, there are many frugal hobbies available. You can:
Learn a new language
Start a blog
Play online games
Start a garden
Stop Impulsive Shopping
Shop when you need something, not when you are browsing around stores and come across something nice. Some people shop while they are emotional, and then find themselves in debt. You will save so much more money if you only purchase items you need.
There are times you are out and it’s ok to purchase an item. For instance, if you come across a baby blanket at a closeout price and your niece is having a baby in a few months. This is a good item to buy for the baby shower that you know will be coming up soon.
Be a Frugal Shopper
A frugal shopper is always going to want to shop while looking out for the best deals. You still must be aware of impulsive shopping habits though. Scan the paper and online ads for deals and coupons you can apply as well. A few tips for the frugal shopper include:
Always research your product first. You may be paying additional money for the bells and whistles you don’t need. You may be able to snag a full-priced item that fits your needs and is cheaper than a more expensive item on sale. The more expensive something costs, the more research you want to do.
Delay making purchases. If you still feel you need to have it two weeks later, go ahead and make the purchase then.
Shop online and use sites such as Ebates.com/Canada. There are over 1,700 stores to shop with and you can earn cash back on each.
Plan Your Meals and Shop Accordingly
A two-person household can easily spend over $500 a month on groceries. Much of that food is actually wasted. To help put those dollars back in your pocket, you should plan your meals each week and shop accordingly. This leaves room in your refrigerator to stock up on fresh food items from your farmers market.
There are a few ways to plan your meals and shop accordingly. Many people find it easier to look at the sales paper and then plan their meals. Others may keep an electronic index of meals and just search the papers for those items on sale.
You don’t want to go to too many stores either to catch sales, unless they are all along the same route. It does not point to save groceries if you will spend the savings on gas.
Take Gourmet Cooking Classes
Instead of going out to expensive restaurants, learn how to cook gourmet meals at home yourself. For the price of a meal for two, you can take a cooking class and get some of the basic skills down. It’s fun to do and can make a great date night. Cooking your own gourmet meals can be at half the expense now.
Use Free Resources
You can reduce or eliminate other expenses if you use the free resources around you. Check out books and videos from your library. You can also download books free on Kindle. Join a Facebook page where authors post books for your review, free. You can even sign up to receive free products in exchange for honest product reviews. Here are 4 other ways to reduce or eliminate your expenses:
Instead of paying for internet services, you could also go to the library or the local coffee shop and use their Wi-Fi.
It won’t save you a fortune, but consider charging your cell phone or iPod while you are at work.
You can even get rid of your cell phone provider or reduce your package plan. You can use your Gmail account to make free calls throughout Canada and the United States. If you have an internet connection and their free account, you are all set.
You can access internet service if you don’t use it much by using your cell phone data plan. This is perfect for checking your email or searching for something online.
Purchase Used Cars and Keep Them Well Maintained
Would you willingly give someone 20% of your paycheck? Well, that is what you are doing if you purchase a new vehicle. The moment you drive it off the lot, you are looking at 20% of its value going down the drain.
A used vehicle that has been kept in mint condition is possible to find. Have a certified inspection before you purchase it. Negotiate the price if you find minor issues with it.
Make sure you know how to properly maintain your vehicle to help extend the life of it. This is a way to truly invest in your purchase.
Pay Your Bills on Time
If you’re used to paying a monthly checking account fee, switch to a no-fee checking account. Signing up for direct deposit may waive that fee. Pay your bills on time with automatic bill payment options to avoid any late fees as well.
So whatever your prior monthly fee was, transfer that over to your savings account each month instead.
Participate in Financial Challenges
Many people aren’t motivated to put money away. So, you and your friends should participate in a financial challenge. You can decide to do it however you’d like, but one popular challenge is the 52-Week Money Challenge.
You’re challenged to save $1,378 by the end of the year by saving a set amount each week. The amount you save each week grows, so that may be discouraging. Instead, save$52 the first week and decrease your contributions. So the last week of the year, you’ll only have to put away $1, which is so much easier to do around the holidays.