These are a few of my favorite secrets to help you save hundreds each month. They’re easy to implement, they don’t require drastic lifestyle changes, and they’re a great way to get into a more money conscience state of mind.
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1. Get money back for everything you buy
I utilize several different cash back programs that save me money on *literally* everything I purchase. My savings is usually around $100 each month! Here’s what I use:
- I use Ebates to get cash back on online shopping. Ebates even offers $10 free for just trying them out if you sign up through this link! I use it a lot since most of my household & pet supplies are purchased online.
Bonus Tip: You can book stays at most major hotels through Ebates and get up to 10% cash back. It’s an easy way to save $100s on your next vacation.Already have Ebates? I recommend checking out TopCashBack as well because they sometimes have higher cash back rates for certain online stores. I use both services & always check which one has the best rate for the site I’m shopping with.
- Ibotta is similar to Ebates, but it’s for in-store purchases AND mobile purchases. This app is what I use for grocery shopping or Target runs. Ibotta also gives you $10 for trying it out, so you don’t have much to lose! Use code HQLCTLT to get your bonus.
- Cash back card for pretty much everything (in conjunction with cash back apps!). I love my Discover It card, and it saves me hundreds of dollars each year. You earn 5% cash back on rotating categories such as gas, groceries, and restaurants, and you get 1% cash back on literally everything else. And at the end of your first year, they’ll match any cash back you’ve earned over the last 12 months! You even get $50 free cash just for signing up if you use this link.
2. Purchase discounted gift cards for the stores you frequent
I frequently shop at Target and Amazon, so I use Raise & Gift Card Granny to purchase discounted gift cards. You can find cards for up to 30% or sell any unused cards you might have lying around from last Christmas. These sites have excellent refund policies and money back guarantees, so you’ll never need to worry about purchasing a bad card. P.S. You’ll get a $5 bonus for Raise & Gift Card Granny through these links!
3. Use a high yield savings account
If you’re like I used to be, you probably don’t pay attention to how much interest your savings account is making. Most savings accounts make a piddly .01% which is more than 100 TIMES less than a high yield savings account makes! That’s the difference between $5 and $500 or $50 and $5,000! Online banks like CIT Bank consistently offer rates that beat out your local or regional banks. CIT Bank currently offers 1.55%, and it’s hard to find rates better than that. If you want to earn even more interest, stash some funds in their short term CD earning 1.85%.
4. Use Amazon subscribe & save
Here’s another way I save on Amazon in addition to using the cash back programs I talked about in #1. Amazon already has amazing prices of things I already purchase, but there’s an easy way to get an extra 5-15% off each item. Shop Subscribe and Save items to get extra discounts on your regular purchases.
Let’s say you find a good deal on laundry detergent. Since you’ll be purchasing this regularly anyway, go ahead and use the subscribe and save option to get an extra 5% off. You can choose to have your detergent shipped to you every 1-6 months depending on how often you go through it. If you have 5 or more subscribe and save items coming in any one month, Amazon bumps all those items into the next tier of savings (usually 15%).
As an example, here’s how my next few months look. I’ll unlock extra savings for August if I add one more subscription, and I’m already set for October.
5. Pay less interest on your loans
I’ve said it before, but interest rates are SO important. Even a 1% reduction in your interest rate will save you tens of thousands of dollars in the long run! For mortgages, a 1% reduction plus a reduction in the term could save you more than $100,000 depending on your home’s value. Refinancing sounds scary, but it’s actually pretty easy with SoFi. Plus, they give you $100 credit if you end up refinancing through them. The reviews look promising, and we’re going to look into refinancing our home loan with them.
6. Save on energy costs by using a programable thermostat
A programable thermostat will save you money by knowing when to heat or cool your house based on your schedule. This smart thermostat looks pretty slick and effortlessly adapts to your schedule and habits.
7. Get rid of your expensive cell phone plan
I’ve been using a $30 cell phone plan for years, and I’m always shocked when my friends tell me they still pay $100 a month or more for their plans. Over 5 years, this is more than $4,200 they’re over paying! I highly recommend checking out Republic Wireless. Their plans start at $15 per month, and their customer service is excellent. And I love that you can switch to a lower or higher plan (and switch back!) whenever you want.
8. Cancel magazine subscriptions
I used to love magazines, but I slowly started to realize that between Pinterest and the magazine’s own website, there was really no point in paying for a print version to be mailed to me. Canceling these subscriptions will save you a few bucks each month.
9. If you have kids, team up with friends, neighbors, or coworkers to trade babysitting duties
I love the idea of trading babysitting duties with your friends, neighbors, and close coworkers. Instead of paying for a babysitter for the evening, you drop your kiddos off with trusted friends and neighbors. These parents also have kids, and you’ll return the favor next time.
10. Ditch your cable plan.
Cable is expensive and overrated. If you switch to Netflix or Amazon Prime (or both!), you’ll have more money in your pocket, thousands of titles to choose from on demand, and no annoying commercials to suffer through every ten minutes. It was definitely a no brainer for our family.
11. Have money automatically drafted into a savings or retirement account each month
Make a budget, and see how much extra cash you’ll have at the end of the month. Have this amount automatically drafted into a high interest savings account if you’re saving up for short-term goals. For long term goals like retirement, have your extra cash automatically deposited into an IRA account. I recommend using a commission-free broker that allows you to automate your portfolio like M1 Finance.
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