Author Topic: The Money-Saving Tips Thread  (Read 10274 times)

singinmomo4

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Re: The Money-Saving Tips Thread
« Reply #30 on: August 25, 2015, 06:10:39 PM »
My tip is about how to make the money you have work better for you.

I opened Kasasa checking and savings accounts with a bank that isn't local, but still located in my state.  I have my checks direct deposited to this account but still have a small local  bank account if I need it.  Kasasa accounts pay high rates of interest if you do a few things every month.  In my instance I earn a rate of 2.75% on amounts up to $10,000 and .50% for over $10,000 on my checking and .75% on amounts up to $10,000 and .50% over 10,000 in my savings account.  To get these rates, all I have to do is have 10 debit card purchases of any amount post and settle per month, have 1 automatic payment or direct deposit and use e-statements.  If I do these 3 things I earn the high interest rates, get reimbursed for any ATM charges from any bank and the account is totally free, no minimum balance requirements and the free checking is the case whether you met the qualification criteria each month or not.  So I have no risk (FDIC insured) and I am able to earn 2.75% each month on up to $10,000. 

To find a bank that offers Kasasa accounts in your state go to:

https://www.depositaccounts.com/

and click the box that says "find your account now"

Then there will be a box to pick your state from a drop down menu.  The banks with their interest rates will be listed and you can check each one individually.

I've had my account for at least a year now and I've done really well and made the high rate of interest each month. 
Rick, an amazing husband, father, fisherman & fisher of men with a servants heart who served God every day. ReRe, miss your smile & twinkle in your eye.

DansSoulmate

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Re: The Money-Saving Tips Thread
« Reply #31 on: August 25, 2015, 07:36:50 PM »
While Dan and I had always lived a very frugal and simple life (to ensure we could retire early) but as a now single person it's becoming even more important for me to pay attention to my finances.  Over the years I have done quite a bit of research on the topic but this site seems to have consolidated a lot of really good ideas and tactics:  http://www.moolanomy.com/1550/how-to-save-money-the-1001-list-of-money-saving-tips-and-ideas/
Here are a few I have done for years:  cut/color my own hair, shop once a week to minimize the chance of something spoiling, wash clothes in cold water, cut dryer sheets in half, eliminated non-value add type grocery items like soda and alcohol from my shopping list, sign up for and use free samples (when I travel I grab all the small bottles I can fit in my luggage), cash in change for gift cards to then buy household supplies, shop at the dollar store for some cleaning supplies, and barter/negotiate with cash (Dan was really great at that).  I am a big believer in budgeting and have dropped all expenses that aren't necessary but my current mission is to decrease my electric bill.  Here are a few ways I am doing this:  minimizing the use of the oven and cooking with a crock pot or gas grill, decreasing the amount of time the dryer runs by using thinner towels so they dry quicker, adjusting the thermostat to a slightly less comfortable temperature, adding water to milk jugs and putting them in the freezer to use less energy, and finally determining when/if I actually use the dishwasher and/or using the energy saving/air dry settings.  A few other things I do that I wanted to share:  I pay off my credit card bill in full every month, but I do charge everything I can to it and cash in the rewards points every month and/or when they reach the appropriate level for a gift card. Hope this helps others to think of ways to save!

Justin

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Re: The Money-Saving Tips Thread
« Reply #32 on: August 26, 2015, 09:21:10 AM »
Loving all these tips - please keep them coming! Here's a few more:

Verizon Cell Plan - Verizon just dropped all contracts in favor of month-to-month plans. Check it out, as it may save you some money. I changed mine yesterday and will be saving $5 per month.

Baking soda - one of my favorite uses (besides brushing my teeth) for baking soda is as an exfoliant. It is gentle on the skin and finer than most store-bought scrubs.

Traveling with a cooler - Ever since I can remember, almost all car trips have been made with a small cooler filled with drinks from home. No more stopping for higher-priced drinks at a gas station just because you are thirsty. I freeze water bottles to use as ice packs; then, you can drink those when they thaw.

Home printing - I will never again own an inkjet printer at home. I have photos printed commercially (Walgreens, or an online vendor) and only print black and white sheets at home so an inexpensive laser printer is for me. No more wasted, dried up ink as the printer toner lasts forever. I got my printer for $50 new at Office Depot (with a trade-in) - watch for specials. I would recommend a Brother or an HP.

Keurig cups - I really love the convenience of my Keurig, but those cups of coffee aren't cheap. I supplement store-bought K-cups with reusuable cups and paper filters purchased on Amazon. Use a fine-ground coffee (I like Cafe Bustelo) and pack the cup tight. There are also cups with built-in screens, but I have high cholesterol and need the paper filter to remove oils.

Free music! - Sign up for the NoiseTrade newsletter (noisetrade.com) and receive links to free downloadable music. Most of the artists are ones that I haven't heard of before, but I have discovered a lot of really cool music here. They also have some free ebooks, but they aren't as appealing to my taste.
Marsha 1975-2014

"Love is the province of the brave"

DansSoulmate

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Re: The Money-Saving Tips Thread
« Reply #33 on: August 26, 2015, 07:49:25 PM »
Here are a few other ideas: consider raising your deductibles on your insurance policies, check your receipt before leaving a store to make sure the sale price was given and/or you weren't charged double for an item, take advantage of free entertainment in your area (theatre, music performances, festivals, etc) and match coupons to store sales to increase their value.  Another area I have spent time researching and thinking about are taxes and more specifically sales and use taxes.  Here in North Carolina "food" is taxed at a much lower rate than other items like "soda", alcohol, paper items, etc.  Little did I know drinks that have less than 50% fruit juice are taxed as "soda". 

TooSoon

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Re: The Money-Saving Tips Thread
« Reply #34 on: August 27, 2015, 03:24:43 PM »
Big Lots.

DansSoulmate

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Re: The Money-Saving Tips Thread
« Reply #35 on: August 28, 2015, 08:41:46 AM »
A few more:  check to make sure you don't have unclaimed property with the state.  I had a rebate check from some deck stain that had been turned in.  My daughter had a small work check.  And my niece had a balance in an abandoned account my dad set up at a credit union for her in her maiden name.  A word of caution though as I have read some states are using this as "bait" to get the attention of folks they have been trying to locate for things like back child support.

I use old toothbrushes to clean tight spaces like a window seal.  And I use worn out socks, sheets, t-shirts  and other clothing items as cleaning and dust rags.

I've sold prom dresses at consignment shops, as well as scrape metal from dan's shop and an old storage building to the recycling center.  And have cashed in broken gold jewelry.  Dan thought i was crazy until he saw the money i made  :)

DansSoulmate

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Re: The Money-Saving Tips Thread
« Reply #36 on: August 28, 2015, 09:06:01 AM »
A few others..the girls and I recently painted an old dresser that dan and i stained 25 years ago with chalk paint and then put new pewter pulls on it.  It looks brand new and adorable in the nursery.  I also am a big fan of spray paint to breath new life into yard ornaments.

I'm finding that being proactive with maintenance is much less expensive in the long run with appliances, mechanicals in the house and cars.  I'm very proactive when it comes to controlling pests and bugs..big fan of seven dust, mouse poison, and bug spray to keep a "no pest" perimeter around my house.  If you have ever made contact with a carpenter ant then you understand  :)

DonnaP

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Re: The Money-Saving Tips Thread
« Reply #37 on: September 01, 2015, 07:51:34 AM »
Has anyone found good deals on flights overseas? I want to plan a trip to Italy and am looking for the best price airfares...
*******
I still think of you, Mick...every SINGLE day!

Kealoha

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Re: The Money-Saving Tips Thread
« Reply #38 on: September 02, 2015, 06:36:11 AM »
Kayak.com is an easy-to-use but also powerful flight search engine that I really like.  Before DD was born I flew >100k miles/yr and actually used kayak to find my optimal flight, then booked it with corporate travel.  It allows you to filter pretty specifically according to your requirements (times, layover, carrier, etc).  It will also look for "hacker fares" ie flying with different carriers if it is cheaper.

Farecompare is also good for their free flight alerts to notify you if prices change.

If you avoid the business traveler "commute" (out on Monday, back on Fri or Sat) fares are generally better.

My family has flown for "free" (including parents, siblings, extended fam) for a long time using this strategy: If you have a credit card with points that can convert into miles, that can save a lot of money if you redeem miles for an award ticket.   you do need to hangout ve more flexibility and some familiarity with the award booking maze.  I have a Chase credit card that earns points which can be converted into either cash or miles.  In some cases (particularly international travel) you can save a few hundred dollars off the equivalent flight price by using miles.  Ie if you have 70k points, that could be $700 cash, but you could also in some cases redeem for an award ticket costing 70k miles that would run you $1k+ if you bought in cash.  domestically I've saved >50% off ticket prices  ($ savings are more like $250/$300 just bc domestic tix are less expensive).  Feel free to PM me if you want more info... 

Airbnb for lodging is fantastic, I stick to the consistently highly reviewed places so there is less chance of surprise.

Costco travel is another highly overlooked source for great deals.  I get all my personal car rentals through them; you get a free extra driver.  By booking a couple months ahead and checking back frequently I have consistently gotten car rentals in the <$12/day range TOTAL for the last 9-10 yrs, including convertibles and 4x4s in Hawaii.  Ie my total rental price is generally more than half fees because the "rental" part is so low. Thanks Costco!

*i know travel is a luxury and we were fortunate to have that opportunity.  That being said we also saved and tried to find the best deals-- we would buy vacations or a vacation activity instead of exchanging tangible gifts.  There are a lot of good savings out there thankfully!


TooSoon

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Re: The Money-Saving Tips Thread
« Reply #39 on: September 02, 2015, 08:08:06 AM »
Not sure what your Italy plan is but I go to Rome often for work, flying from Philly or Newark.  Two years running now, I have bought the cheapest tickets I could find.  They routed me through Casablanca last year and Oslo/Stockholm this year.  In both cases, the connections turned out to be NIGHTMARES.  It pays to fly direct even if it costs more, especially if you don't have a lot of travel time once in Italy.  That is the lesson I have learned.

That said, my colleague flew from Boston into and out of Milan direct on Emirates.  Milan is the business hub in Italy and there are tons more direct flights.  It was under 1K and they had no complications. He then took the train down to Rome and then back to Milan, stopping along the way.

Also, I've seen some pretty spectacular packages for many places, but Italy, Ireland and central America especially, on travelzoo.com - its worth a look if you live close to any major international airport.  Be sure to read the fine print.

Buon viaggio!


mmg19

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Re: The Money-Saving Tips Thread
« Reply #40 on: September 03, 2015, 10:42:05 AM »
My LH and I were semi-frugal.  One of his favorite sayings was ?An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure?.   This doesn't always put money in your hands immediately but in the long run saves Big Bucks.  Some examples of how this has worked for us/me over time.  Taking care of what you have is obvious but it has saved me $$$.

Car- Regular oil change, tire rotation, tune-up.  Now 8 yrs. old and still going with no major repairs or costs.

Household appliances ? Vacuum refrigerator coils monthly, check and replace filters in AC/heating until every 3-6 months.  Clean vents regularly, check and do preventive maintenance as needed on all appliances.  Keep a check-list.

Utilities ? replace leaky faucets and drips.  Turn off all lights when not in room.  Caulking windows as needed.  Checklists are available on google for preventive maintenance.  Be aware and track any increase in electricity, water, and gas bills. 

Doing this without my partner is not always easy and not fun but I'm still using refrigerator, washer, dryer, dishwasher, microwave,  vacuum cleaner,  and small appliances I've had for over 15 years.  I can't afford replacements and updates right now so immediate repair and a little TLC has saved me from spending on the big items.

At present I am renting after selling my house this summer, but I believe the reason I made the profit I did on the house was because the inspector found everything is excellent working condition. 
   

Justin

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Re: The Money-Saving Tips Thread
« Reply #41 on: March 18, 2016, 11:00:07 PM »
I went to Sherwin-Williams to buy some more paint, as I am trying to fix up and sell this house before it is time for our move to AZ (yay!). While waiting, I struck up a conversation with a professional painter and he was there to buy a gallon of "mis-tinted" paint - basically, paint that was mixed to an incorrect color by the store employees.

What was his cost for this gallon of mis-tinted paint? One dollar. Yes, a gallon of Sherwin-Williams paint for $1. He told me that he painted his whole house interior for $14, but you have to check with the store religiously because you never know what colors they will have but he is there buying paint all of the time anyway. If I have time to do some more painting, I am checking there for a doable, cheap color :-)
Marsha 1975-2014

"Love is the province of the brave"

Catnip

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Re: The Money-Saving Tips Thread
« Reply #42 on: March 19, 2016, 11:46:19 AM »
I work full-time. I always bring my lunch, in a vinyl lunch bag-NY Yankee bag, so I love to use it. I usually always bring PBJ, a yogurt (and a spoon from home) and an apple.

I love coffee. So I bring my own from home. Again, I have a Yankee thermos I bought at Yankee Stadium. So I love to use it. I make 2 K-Cups at home, put in my own cream and sugar, and have it on my desk at work. I bring my own coffee cup from home, that I bring home every night and put in the dishwasher. I don't even use half and half anymore, just milk. I could drink more coffee, but this limits me to only two. Then, in the afternoon, I drink tea, with my own tea bags in my desk drawer.

So coffee in the morning, tea in the afternoon, but I won't tell you what I drink at night!
You left and forgot to tell my heart how to live without you.

Wheelerswife

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Re: The Money-Saving Tips Thread
« Reply #43 on: March 19, 2016, 11:59:17 AM »
Catnip...it sounds like you have this down...but the Yankees swag?  You can do better. 

:D

Maureen
Life is short.  Love with all you've got. 

Barry 11/29/55-9/22/09       John  1/16/57-1/11/14

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Pammy

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Re: The Money-Saving Tips Thread
« Reply #44 on: March 19, 2016, 12:14:35 PM »
Here in Georgia spring has sprung and with it comes wasps, hornets and bees galore. I use cheap mouthwash in a spray bottle and spray around my doors, windows and patio furnature. The minty freshness seems to repel them, it is environmentally safe, safe for pets and won't kill the pollinators, just repels them :)
If there was something I didn't know about, I would know about it