The majority of households will all likely go through periods where money is tight due to unexpected expenses, a significant life or job change, a medical hardship, inflation/increased prices, and much more! Here are some simple, but not insignificant ways, of stretching your dollars further. Small amounts of savings do add up!
- Organize errands/trips so that you are not backtracking and using more fuel.
- Be sure you have a competitive rate for your auto insurance. Bundle renters or home owner’s insurance with your auto.
- Get regular oil changes and use regular unleaded gas, unless not recommended for your automobile.
- Keep your tires properly inflated.
- If you are having trouble making car payments, consider downsizing your car or talk to dealer about refinancing for lower monthly payment. This will extend loan and result in more interest being paid but will help out in the short term.
- Take turns driving with your children’s friends’ parents.
- Independent mechanics often charge less than dealers for auto repairs and maintenance. Ask friends and family members for recommendations.
- Ask mechanic about using re-constituted parts.
- Consider buying a pre-owned, certified car.
- Set a weekly fuel budget and stick to it by limiting unnecessary trips.
- If tires need replacing, check out pre-owned, quality tires.
- Vacuum and wash/wax your own car.
- In nice weather, walk shorter distances or ride a bike.
- Put off wants (versus needs) for a few paychecks.
- Use your public library.
- Consider skipping having your nails done for a few weeks or months.
- Wait for tax returns for needs that can wait or for future wants.
- Plan vacations at least a year in advance to save for them gradually. Travel off season.
- Look for free and low-cost entertainment events such as outdoor festivals and concerts, parks, hikes.
- Check out local high school and college performances and events.
- Attend movies in the afternoon at matinee prices.
- Temporarily pause cable and other streaming services.
- Buy clothes off season.
- Go to consignment shops to either get cash for clothes you already have or to buy new items.
- Borrow or trade tools and equipment with neighbors, family members and friends.
- Check out estate sales, garage sales and flea markets.
- Go to local Goodwill, Salvation Army and Savers stores.
- Know what you have at home before you buy more clothes. Many people buy items they forget they have.
- Look on Facebook Marketplace or Nextdoor for discounted or free items.
- Look at “scratch and dent” rooms at furniture stores.
- Consider painting or staining furniture instead of buying new.
- Consider pre-paid cell phone plans as they often cost less.
If you’re dealing with high interest debt payments as well, see what you can save with Parachute’s Debt Management Plan https://parachutecreditcounseling.org/dmp-calculator/
Would you like to meet one-on-one with one of our Financial Counselors to talk specifically about your budget? Check out our Financial Coaching Session https://parachutecreditcounseling.org/services/credit-budget-counseling/#financial-coaching or call 716-712-2060.