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When you’re on a journey of reaching financial freedom, one of the main things that take place is learning how to save money. Many things can help you save hundreds of dollars every year, such as creating a budget learning how to meal plan on a budget and cutting on your expenses.
This is especially important if you’re living paycheck to paycheck or only on one income.
Many people still thinking that saving money is too hard. Some think they don’t make enough to put money aside and save it while others start making some drastic changes in their life that affect them emotionally, causing them to give up too soon and this ends in failure.
But it doesn’t have to be like that. This is the reason I have put together a list of things to stop buying to save money.
How to Save Money Each Month
I’m the person who takes care of our family finances, and one of the biggest things I’ve learned over the years is how to be more mindful of our spending habits.
I started by creating a budget, tracking our spending, learning how to use the cash envelope system, and thinking about unnecessary things to stop buying to save money at home.
It was somewhat overwhelming in the beginning, but these things together made a big difference in our bank account.
The thing is…to start saving money, you don’t have to make drastic changes. In fact, there are some small changes you can implement now that will have a big impact on your financial life.
This simple list will give you ideas about what you can cut out of your budget and start saving money now.
15 Things to Stop Buying to Save Money
1. Fast Food
It sounds crazy, but cutting out fast food can save you so much money. From time to time, eating out can be cheaper than eating at home. But for the most part, you can easily stop buying fast food and save yourself some money.
What you can do instead is plan your meals for the week. Dedicate one day of the week to planning your meals for the following week. A simple trick that will save you a lot of time and money is to double a recipe, freeze it, and eat it on the days you don’t feel like cooking.
The $5 meal plan is a program that I recommend for saving money, and it’s worth looking into. For only $5 a month, you’ll get in a weekly meal plan with the exact shopping list right in your inbox. You will also have the choice to build your own meals. The best part is that every meal will cost about $2 per person! Super cheap! You can learn more about the $5 meal plan here.
2. Brand Name Food
There is nothing wrong with buying generic or store-name products instead of the brand name ones. There is a misconception that because a product is from a recognized brand-name, it is better quality than the generic item.
Truth be told, if you check the labels carefully, you’ll notice that, in most cases, generic brands have the same or fewer ingredients (which is good) than brand-name alternatives.
So the next time you go shopping, don’t hesitate to buy generic products. This simple solution will save you a lot of money every month.
Pro Tip: Use Ibotta
Next time you go to the store for groceries, use Ibotta, a free app that helps you save money and get cash back when buying groceries.
3. Paid Apps or Unnecessary Subscriptions
Buying an app here or there that you never really use can add up quickly. The crazy part is that you don’t even know what you’re spending because you’re not tracking it.
This also includes subscriptions for magazines or similar things that can put a dent in your bank account every month.
To avoid these unnecessary subscriptions I highly recommend starting using Trim.
Trim is a free app that will help you save money in different ways. Trim can help you negotiate and lower your cable, internet, and phone bills by up to 30%. It will also check to see if you have any unwanted subscriptions and cancel the ones you don’t really need, saving you money.
Trim is definitely a money-saving app that is a must for anyone who is serious about saving money wisely.
4. Bottled Water
Not only is bottled water a bad thing for the environment, but it’s a big waste of money too. Trust me, I’ve lectured myself on this.
It’s cheaper to get a water pitcher with a filter and get a Contigo water bottle to refill and take with you as you need. Water is precious and needed for families, but you don’t want to keep buying bottled water. It’s a waste for your pocket change, and they just sit there in the landfill.
5. Paper Towels
Using paper towels is a big waste of money. Just think for a moment about the main use you give to paper towels. It’s probably cleaning kitchen counters, mirrors, or messy spills. Why not using pieces of cloth or rags to do that job? When you stop buying paper towels, you will not only save a lot of money but also help the environment.
6. New Cell Phones
Ugh, this one is going to hurt. The next time your cell phone plan comes up for renewal, don’t jump at the chance to upgrade your phone. Instead, keep the phone you already have. It may sound taboo, but your phone can last more than one or two years if you take care of. Not buying new cell phones can really help you to save money.
7. Gym Memberships
If you are currently a gym member, think about how much money goes to this every month. Regardless of if your monthly membership is $10 per month, $65 per month, or even more, you can save a considerable amount of money by canceling it. Instead, you can try free alternatives like exercising at home with YouTube videos or going outdoors for a run or walk.
8. Sale Items You Don’t Need
Just because an item is on sale doesn’t necessarily mean that you have to buy it. Think twice before making a purchase decision. Is it something you really need? If not, please do yourself a favor and don’t waste your money.
The costs of having a haircut for either you or your family could be very expensive. Check out your nearest beauty school where you can get hair services at extremely affordable prices.
Another option is to watch some YouTube videos and try to learn how to cut hair yourself. This task can be overwhelming in the beginning, but if you want to save money, it is an option to consider.
10. Beauty Items
Take a look in your bathroom cabinet to see how many beauty items you have lying around. Are you using them all? If not, you need to make sure you’re not buying any more. Give yourself a deadline to use these beauty items up before you buy more.
11. Direct Sales Items
While I won’t mention any particular direct sales items, some of you are obsessed. Whether it’s clothing, toothpaste, or any other item you buy, maybe it’s time to pause. You might love the products, but are you saving money?
12. Fancy Brewed Coffees
Let’s be honest, buying coffee is a luxury but not something you need to buy every day. Brew your own coffee in the morning. Make Starbucks a special treat, something you get once or twice a month. You’re really going to save money with this one.
13. Easy-to-Grow Produce
Yes, owning a garden can be expensive, but once you get it going, it can truly save you a lot of money in the long run. Sometimes, not buying some produce and growing your own is one smart money-saving move.
You only need some inexpensive seeds a weekend morning!
14. Unplanned Things
When it comes down to saving money, a lot of the “costly” things are items we never planned on buying anyway. One of the things that helped us avoid buying unplanned things was learning how to budget.
A simple budget can help you understand where your money goes every month. Then you will have the opportunity to decide if the products you are buying are a necessity or a want. A budget can also help you develop better spending habits. If you are new to budgeting, here is a simple guide to creating your first budget.
15. Brand New Items
When you’re trying to get into the saving-money scene, it’s best to stop buying everything brand new. This includes things like furniture, clothes, and even toys. You can save a lot of money by just looking for second-hand items.
Many people have clutter sitting around their house because they’re habitual shoppers for items that they don’t really need. For instance, I have had the opportunity to buy furniture through a local Facebook group where people sell their stuff. This trick saved us a couple of hundred bucks!
So there you go. The list above contains just some of the things you can do or stop buying to save money. You just need a little bit of planning and to start with small changes. What other things have you stopped buying to save money?
Related ways to save money at home articles:
- How to Increase Your Saving By $7000 This Year
- 30 Smart Ways to Save Money on Utility Bills
- 11 Ways to Save Money on Groceries Without Using Coupons
- 70+ Amazing Ways to Save Money Every Month
- How to Build an Emergency Fund and Save Your First $1,000 Fast