I’ve always loved saving money, who doesn’t? But since deciding to become a stay at home mom, I’ve had to get a bit more serious with the penny-pinching. I’m pretty sure there are many others searching for little ways to save some cash so here a just a few things that have helped our family stretch those hard-earned dollars.
We cut our cable and home phone services
We were paying close to $150/month for our satellite and home phone packages. F THAT. We invested in an android box to stream all our favorite shows. You can pick one up here. They’re awesome! As for our home phone, no one but telemarketers and bill collectors would call us on that line so no loss there. 😉 We both have cell phones so paying for a landline was pretty silly.
Don’t stop for coffee
Just don’t do it. Buy a coffee machine for home (Don’t forget a travel mug!) and save yourself a whole lot of moolah. Listen to me. I would buy at least one cup every morning on my way to work, a lot of times two. My husband and I calculated our coffee obsession was costing us approx $160 a month. YIKES! And that’s not a fancy Starbucks obsession, this was a cheap 2 dollar coffee. When we actually looked at how much we spent a month on only coffee, it definitely jolted me awake faster than that first heavenly sip in the morning.
We buy used items
I rarely buy anything brand new anymore. I shop local thrift stores, online sale groups or websites like Kijiji and Craigslist.
I think a lot of people have a misconception about buying second-hand items. I’ll admit, when I was (a bit) younger I thought it was gross and that I needed everything brand new and man was I an idiot. I find AMAZING deals allll the time for cheap cheap cheap, even free! Name brand clothing, (Not that I really give a shit about brands) beautiful furniture, home decor, anything you’re looking for you can find. Honestly, the majority of my house has been furnished by shopping this way. It takes a bit more searching and item inspecting (Always inspect!) but it’s actually kind of fun!
Oh and I don’t want to sound like a paranoid freak or anything, but I try not go to anyone’s house to see an item alone. I will usually meet the seller in a public place but if it’s a large item that I need to pick up at someone’s house I usually always have someone come with me. You never know, this world is getting creepier every day.
Sell unused/unwanted items
The same classified sites I browse for deals, I sell items we no longer need/use. Baby items usually go pretty fast. I’ve also scored FREE furniture, gave it a little sanding and paint and sold it. Seriously guys, you can make a decent amount of cash doing this! Again, try to have someone with you if someone is coming over to pick something up. I usually always tell people I’m available when I know my husband will be home.
Make Some Extra Cash Online
Like me, you may have searched the interwebs high and low looking for ways to earn some extra cash and just given up because lets be honest, most of the findings are either too good to be true or just straight out scams.
Through much trial and error, I have found a few gems.
Opinion Outpost– There are SO many survey sites out there who all claim to have a massive amount of work waiting for you as soon as you sign up. You go through all the hassle of signing up and filling out all the info they ask for and at the end of it all- no surveys to complete. I get it, annoying.
I had almost given up until I found Opinion Outpost. I get new survey opportunities pretty much everyday and while I don’t make enough to live off of, the money I make does add up and help a lot! Paying for a box of diapers a month or my son’s karate lesson is definitely helping out!
Sign up for Opinion Outpost here.
(This post is sponsored by Opinion Outpost. All opinions are my own)
UserTesting – I’ve just discovered this awesome site and am loving it so far! Basically, you get paid to test websites for all sorts of companies and offer your opinion. Each test you complete with UserTesting generally pays between $10 – $20 for offering an in depth audio opinion, much more than a survey site however, you are required to complete each task and spend approx 15-20 mins explaining your thoughts about the website. I generally earn about 50 bucks a month, not bad for a few minutes here and there of giving my opinion. You are paid through Paypal exactly 7 days to the minute from when you complete a test. Check them out for yourself here
(I am in no way affiliated with UserTesting and all opinions given are my own)
We changed banks
My husband and I both had chequing accounts at big Canadian banks and together, we were paying $360 JUST in bank fees per year. Uhm, Yeah, You read that right. We switched to a bank that charges 0$ in monthly fees with unlimited debit card transactions. For my Canadian peeps, that bank is Tangerine. It was SO easy to switch over automatic payments and direct deposits. Check it out and use my referral code, 46807818S1 if used before January 2017, YOU and I both get 50 bucks deposited right into our accounts and once you open yours, you can start referring family and friends and earn even more! Free Freakin money. Love it! Click here to get started and don’t forget to use my orange key to earn your free 50 bucks.
We became a one car family
Okay, so this one isn’t really a little thing. It’s a pretty big deal I know, trust me I KNOW! But this is the biggest way (besides not having to pay for daycare ) we’re saving money at the moment. This one was a very tough decision. Having two cars was very convenient. I LOVED my Betty! (What? You don’t name your car?) I still think of her everyday but what I don’t miss is that big fat car payment coming out of my bank account every month. I will admit, having one car with a big family takes a lot of planning, even more so if you don’t live close/have access to public transit but there’s so much money-saving opportunity here;
– Only one car payment (Or none if the car you have is already paid for)
– Maintenance on only one vehicle
– Gas money saved
– Savings on insurance, vehicle registration etc.
We will most likely go back to two cars eventually, but will not buy brand new and will try to pay for it cash this time.
So there you have it. Hope you’ll try some of these and let me know your money saving tips in the comments!