LifestylePersonal Finance

Five Extreme ways to Save Money

If you are in a financial bind saving a lot of money may take a few extreme measures. Job loss, injury, illness or even a death can necessitate some serious tightening of the purse strings. If you need to save a lot of money fast, you may have to make some major sacrifices.

Here are five extreme methods people use to save money. If these methods do not work for you, see if you can adjust the methods to something more manageable for your household:
Reusing bath water:

If penny-pinching is the name of the game for you, reusing bath water or rain water can save you a bit of money on your water/gas bill every month. Some families reuse bath water to wash laundry or wash the car. You can also set a bucket out in the yard to catch rain to use for watering your plants or cleaning. Alternatively, you could just bathe more than one child in the same bath water and keep your showers under three minutes.

Go vegetarian:

Meat is traditionally the most expensive item in the grocery basket. If you really need to pinch pennies, consider cutting meat out of your diet entirely. If skipping out on meat entirely is not appealing to you, consider going vegetarian for at least two meals a week to cut down on costs or bulk up meat with ground black beans and a lot of vegetables.

Ditch the car:

Walk, buy a bike or take public transportation. If you do not own your car, you are likely paying at least $200 for a car payment, $60 or more in gas, plus car insurance and maintenance. Ditching your car in favor of a bike or public transportation can easily save you $3,000 a year! If ditching the car is not an option, try walking when you can to save on gas money, car pool with neighbors or selling your car for a less expensive auto.

Move to a smaller house:

Housing is a major expense. You can often save several hundred dollars a month by finding a cheaper place to live. Some people have gone to the extreme of buying a cheap RV and ditching housing costs completely. Not only does this free up a bit of money, you can probably ditch the car too and have more flexibility with travel arrangements. This may not work if you have kids or hate small spaces, so consider downsizing to a smaller apartment or moving to a cheaper neighborhood to save money.

Go on a shopping “fast”:

The trick to this is outlawing any spending (minus preapproved necessities) for a certain amount of time. One blogger went on a shopping fast for a year! Make allowances for food, gas, housing and utilities, but skip anything that does not meet your needs requirements. This means saying no to dinners out, birthday gifts, manicures, new clothing etc. If going an entire year without shopping terrifies you, consider opting for three to six months to see how much money you can save. Take advantage of free services like the library and public beaches for entertainment and keep food spending to the basics.


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