Home > Are there new and improved ways to save money?

Are there new and improved ways to save money?

January 19th, 2020 at 08:34 pm

Every so often, I try to find different ways to save money. Not that I'm an expert, but after awhile, so many articles seem to say the same thing over and over. I do many of them. There are a couple I won't. One is we don't plan to give up cable. My husband doesn't drink, smoke, golf, gamble, or do any of these things that cost lots of money. He enjoys television and the shows that are on cable. I figure that is is entertainment and we can afford it. We rarely if ever go to a movie or sports event. So, we aren't spending money on those things.

But getting back to my original thought, every so often I type into Pinterest and Google and read the articles. I do a lot of the things.

So, is saving money just doing the same things? Yeah, I know, it is a rhetorical question. For everyone it is a different thing on how they save. I'm certainly not going to do some of the extreme things that were on shows a couple of years back.

So, what do you think? Is there really nothing new about finding ways to save money?

14 Responses to “Are there new and improved ways to save money?”

  1. disneysteve Says:

    I don't think there's anything new, but that doesn't mean that you're doing everything you could be doing. And I agree that there are things we could do but aren't interested or willing to do.

    Start with the big things. When did you last shop around for insurance rates for auto, home, life? If it's been a year or more, get fresh quotes and see if you can find better rates. We switched our auto insurance about 2 years ago and saved a ton of money, like several hundred per month.

    The move on to the smaller things - groceries, paid services gym, landscaper, etc.

    If you want to look into things you may not have thought of, pick up a copy of The Tightwad Gazette by Amy Dacyczyn. You can get a used copy on Amazon for about $6. Some of her suggestions are pretty hard core but a lot are more reasonable. I actually had a couple of my suggestions published by her when she had her newsletter. When she stopped the newsletter, she compiled everything from them into the book.

    And even with things you don't want to cut out, like cable, make sure you're getting the best rate you can. A while ago, we actually upgraded our cable package to more channels, faster internet, and phone service and ended up paying less than we were paying previously.

  2. My English Castle Says:

    I'm with you, Rob. And agree with Disney Steve that looking at the big things first is a good idea. Cheaper insurance and phone plans seem always to be good things to investigate. How about doing a little online shopping for banks with the best rates? We do so much better with online banks than with our local bank--although we still keep our checking account there. And credit cards with no fees but good rewards?

    But you're such an accomplished saver, lots of stuff will seem like old news.

  3. Jenn Says:

    There does come a time that you know the basics so articles seem repetitive. But I find new perspectives that help me all the time. Beyond the original price of a purchase (or the savings in choosing not to purchase), there could be opportunities to use less of something or make it last longer. Or hidden costs like fees and expenses for investment funds. Tax savings from discovering a deduction. Sometimes too there may be opportunities that are unique to you. I think of CB planning meals around her health club giveaways.

  4. Greenleaf Says:

    Sometimes technology or economic cycles give you specific new options. I don't have cable, but for less than $8/month I can watch a bunch of the shows I might otherwise miss on Hulu. For me that totally removes any temptation cable might otherwise hold. The internet has made it very easy to refinance your student loans for much better interest rates, outside of business hours without leaving your home. Youtube has made simple home repairs much more realistic for the unskilled homeowner. Borrowing ebooks through my local library's website has eliminated late fees, which I was terrible about before. Almost everything can be put on autopay now so you never lose track of the date and get a late fee. Etc.

  5. crazyliblady Says:

    @Nathan Reymond.Investing may make more money than saving, but when you consider savings for emergencies, car repairs, house maintenance, etc., you need to have the money where you can access it easily, but not too easily. I also don't want excessive risk attached to those funds.

  6. disneysteve Says:

    Greenleaf touched on a point I was going to make too. Technology has created new ways to save. There are numerous apps and websites that allow you to save in ways that didn't previously exist.

    Groupon and Living Social have many great deals for restaurants and entertainment things as well as travel and other things. Rakuten (formerly ebates) gives you cash back on purchases online and even in some stores. A friend introduced me to that last year and I think we've already gotten around $70 cash back from using it.

    Online shopping in general is a huge source of savings. We rarely buy anything without first checking Amazon as their prices are almost always the best. We also will search on ebay for certain items and have often been able to save a significant amount there over our local stores.

    Sometimes even going to the websites of your favorite stores can save you money as they sometimes have online-only specials and discounts. I've saved money that way several times.

    Dosh, Ibotta, and other apps also have ways for you to save money or get cash back on everyday purchases.

  7. Wink Says:

    I'm with you on the cable, at least for now. We love our sports viewing and it's a big part of our social gatherings. So far I haven't found a better alternative. I feel like it's my one "splurge" so to speak. Some like fine dining, some like a lot of travel. It's OK to reasonably spend on what brings you happiness.

  8. CB in the City Says:

    I hear you. Once you get good at saving, there doesn't seem to be anything new you can do to up the game. I do look at sites like Dollar Stretcher to see if there are new tips I haven't thought of. Often there is. Even something little can brighten my day.

    I read recently that most people do better just buying what they need and not focusing so hard on scrimping or getting a deal. Chasing deals can lead to too much buying. I know that probably isn't you, but I do think there is some truth in the concept of focusing on need. I would classify cable as a need, by the way, if your husband is fond of it and has no other bad habits. Happy husbands are a need!

  9. My English Castle Says:

    I'd like to hear people's experiences with Groupon. I've had several merchants turn them down and have received zero satisfaction from Groupon. I've unsubscribed now because of it.

  10. crazyliblady Says:

    @ myenglishcastle.

    I have never used groupon because I am a little suspicious. It's not like a coupon or coupon code, right? A friend used groupon to get a discount on something through a certain merchant, then the merchant would not honor the groupon. It makes me even more determined to not use them.

  11. disneysteve Says:

    I've used Groupon and Living Social many many times, mostly with restaurants but a few other things too (escape room, digitizing old movies, etc.). Deals are great and I've never had a problem using one.

    I'm really curious about a merchant refusing to honor a Groupon. On what basis did they do that? Did they say it wasn't valid or was there some fine print that might have been missed? If a merchant refused to honor a deal and I was sure I was following all of the terms and conditions, I'd certainly be raising hell with Groupon to get my money back and report that merchant.

  12. FrugalTexan75 Says:

    MEC - I've also used Groupon many times with no issues.

  13. Lucky Robin Says:

    I don't really think so, but there will always be new people coming to look at old ideas because they have never tried to save money before. That's why they still write those articles. It's new to someone, if not to us.

  14. rob62521 Says:

    Thank you for all your comments. I guess I just needed a nudge to reconsider things. You all are wonderful at saving money and I learn from you.

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