Have you noticed the rising prices everywhere you go? Ya, me too! It has been a crazy year watching the numbers skyrocketing all around us, especially if you compare prices to last year. Everything that I love buying has gone up a significant amount and I feel like I’m not going to be able to afford things pretty quickly. So what can we do about it? Unfortunately we don’t have the power to change it but we CAN control what we are doing. Below are some tips you need to start doing to offset these crazy costs!
1) Buy the Generic Brand
You don’t always need the expensive brand name. This goes for food, clothes, and anything else you can purchase. Obviously some things are better with the brand names, however some food tastes the same whether it’s one brand or another. Some clothes still feel nice and look good without that brand name. No one is going to stare at your watch until they see what brand it is. Save money where you can and you’re going to be grateful you didn’t spend money on those clothes that are just going to go out of style or that food you didn’t even eat.
2) Think about how much you really need to drive
We don’t always need to drive everywhere. If you are within walking distance, utilize it. If you are a little farther, get a bike. Everyone loves bikes right now and it’ll be a lot cheaper than the rising gas prices. You’ll also get a little workout in without even trying. Think outside the box on this one. There are buses and trains for a reason. Use them!
3) Eat at home, no more ordering in or eating out
I am the worst at this but you would be surprised at how much money you would save by just cooking your own meals. If you are like me and wait until it’s dinner time, you’re starving and have no food, you’ll probably go get something because it’s easier. Start planning ahead. Grocery shop more often and plan out your meals for the week. You can even meal prep to make everything fast and easy for yourself. Find what works for you so you don’t get those urges to spend money on someone else cooking your food.
4) Cheaper Hobbies
There are so many hobbies that are fun but costly. Everything adds up overtime and this is a good way to eliminate some of your costs. If you pay for a monthly gym membership, start running outside or buy a couple weights. It’ll be a lot cheaper than what you’re spending right now. If you like to paint or be more creative, go to the store and buy your own materials to do that at your house. If one of your hobbies consists of shopping online all the time, like me, delete the app and start distracting yourself with something more meaningful. I get on my stationary bike, start reading, or use my friends as a distraction. Whatever your hobby is, I’m sure you can get creative and find a cheaper solution.
5) You don’t always have to go out to have a good time
A girls night is the best night. Get together at one of your houses, it’s free. Bring over an appetizer (it’s still cheaper than the one at that restaurant) and hangout and have a good time. You don’t always have to go somewhere for it to be fun. This way you even get to be in your sweatpants if you want to.
6) Make a budget for how much to spend per week for each item
Make a budget and stick to it. This will help you get on track the fastest and will probably make you more aware of how much you are spending per week. Make a plan for your groceries, gas budget, any fun money you want to put in there, and focus on where you can save money.
7) House Parties, buying a bottle is cheaper than a couple drinks
Unless you drink super crazy expensive alcohol, buying a bottle of that alcohol will be cheaper than the amount of drinks you would have on a night out. Going out is getting expensive too even if it’s only for a couple drinks. Instead take that same energy and use it for a night in with all of your friends, good music, and of course everyone bringing their own drinks.
8) Don't buy it
If you are overthinking if you want/need it, don’t buy it. Chances are, it’s something you obviously don’t need. Save your money for something better than you actually want or need. If in doubt, would you be thinking about that item for a year later if you didn’t buy it? If not, you will be fine without it.
9) Shop around before shopping
Look around before you buy!!! You would be surprised how much money you would save by comparing store pricing. You can buy the same thing at multiple stores but priced differently. I just placed a skin care order through Ulta, shipping was estimated at 2 weeks and it ended up getting damaged and canceled before it even got to me. I then decided to see where else had the products I wanted. Walmart had almost all the same products I wanted except cheaper and shipping was in 4 days. Figure out where you can buy what you need for a lower price and save that money.
10) Be around people also on a budget
It’s always helpful to be around people that have the same goals as you. If you are hanging out with people that constantly have to be going out and spending money to have a good time, chances are you are doing the same thing. Surround yourself with people that want to help you and support your decision for wanting to save money.
11) Buy some things in bulk
Buying in bulk is often cheaper than buying every individual item every week or month. If you make reoccurring purchases, save that money and order in bulk. It might seem like a lot more money at the time but it saves you money in the long run.
12) If NEED work/event clothes, try a cheaper option
If you need an outfit for work or a wedding try to shop somewhere with cheaper options. Plato’s Closet, Goodwill, Salvation Army, ect. are good places to start. I’ve even heard that if you go to one of those locations in a richer area, they are going to have more designer brands and nicer clothes for more of a budget than if you bought them from a different store. Save where you can and this might be a good idea for you to look into.
13) Be money conscious throughout your days
Always be thinking that you want to save money, consciously keep that in your head. The more you put it into your head, the more aware you are going to be about how much you are actually spending. Sometimes we impulse buy on things we don’t even need, like that $5 coffee on your way home when you’re just going home to sleep. Be aware of how much you are spending and it will definitely help you save over time.