Implementing money saving modifications that go beyond the standard rules of thumb can help you lower your cost of living so you can put money towards more immediate needs.

You’ve most likely watched the money-saving endeavors of the frugal-obsessed on reality TV (using a candle at night, reusing uneaten sauce by dumping it back into its rightful jar, buying pork fat instead of pork). You’ve also probably heard the tips intended for the average Joes (using a monthly pass to commute, brown bagging your lunch, clipping coupons, skipping your morning coffee). However, there may be money-saving methods you haven’t taken into consideration. Take a look at the following eight ways you can save more — and don’t worry, you won’t have to give up your morning latte.

1. Consider the total number.

Costs are often broken down by retailers into more digestible terms — cell phone contracts, for instance. You may be paying $100 a month for your cell phone contract, but instead of thinking of it in increments of $100, consider the total amount you are paying, which is $2,400 for a two-year contract. By thinking long-term, you can visualize how much you’re really paying, for services like these.

According to BillShrink, a service that compares phone plan rates, Americans waste on average close to $350 a year on wireless service. Imagine how much you could save in the long-run if you switched to a cheaper carrier or plan. A different plan for even $15 less monthly would add up to an overall savings of $360.

2. Let go of extended warranties.

There are a few costs that can easily be let go of, right away. For instance, extended warranties bring in a significant amount of profit for many manufacturers, but your credit card offers extended warranties on nearly every purchase you make, usually doubling the original manufacture warranty up to a period of three years. It can be helpful to re-consider the insurance you’re currently paying for and figuring out what might be costing you more money than is necessary.

3. Learn the art of haggling.

There are several costs you can almost always haggle with customer service representatives for like cable, phone and internet services. Simply by calling and stating your desire to switch to a different service provider, representatives are inclined to lower the price of your existing plan in order to keep you as a customer. There are plenty of scripts for these phone calls online, especially from MyBankTracker’s previous interviewee, personal finance guru Ramit Sethi. Haggling is also applicable to annual fees, late fees, and overdraft fees.

4. Avoid being cash poor.

Avoid wiping all of your credit card balances each month in order to ensure you aren’t “cash poor,” which means you won’t have any cash on hand in the case of an emergency. If you can’t stand having a credit card balance, try paying down fifty percent instead, so you can reserve some of your cash.

5. Appeal to your group-saving mentality.

There are a variety of arrangements you can create with your friends or neighbors that can help you make ends meet. For instance, big warehouse stores like B.J.s, Costco, and Sam’s Club sell almost everything in bulk. By purchasing everyday necessities with friends, you can all split the cost of the groceries and end up paying less than you would have if you went to the supermarket on your own. Also, it may not feel glamorous but living with a roommate is a great way to save on rent. If you’re friendly with your neighbor, it can help you save costs if you agree to share subscription services. For instance, if you have Netflix and Hulu, offer your passwords for your neighbor’s Wi-Fi.

6. Move leftover funds into savings.

Whether it’s your rainy day fund or a nest egg, the day before payday, assess the leftover cash you have left in your checking account and move it into your savings account. This ensures that your savings grow on a consistent basis, and that you never leave your checking account vulnerable to overdraft fees.

7. Reuse recipes you love.

If you’re like most people, you gravitate towards the foods you enjoy the most from month to month, especially on nights when you’re tired or don’t have much time to prepare a complicated meal. While many would like to imagine themselves making a delicious meal that they’ve never cooked before, chances are, they’ll most likely stick to recipes they are familiar with. Stock your kitchen with the foods you love to cook and keep a file of recipes on hand that are easy to prepare. This way, you don’t overbuy, avoid wasting food, and can reserve dabbling in new meals for your nights out or weekends in.

8. Do it yourself.

Make it a goal to learn a small task — such as changing your oil in your car, or making small repairs around your home. YouTube can be a valuable source when it comes to learning something new.

Money modifications such as these can help simplify your lifestyle, financial and otherwise. Keeping these eight tips in mind can help keep more money in your pocket, allowing you to prioritize how you spend and save your money.

Related Articles
  1. Home & Auto

    4 Areas to Consider Roofing Material Types

    Roofing your home is very important, that’s why you should choose a roof specifically designed to handle your area’s climate.
  2. Insurance

    How to Shop for Home Insurance

    Tips for getting the best protection for your place and possessions.
  3. Retirement

    3 Reasons Your 401(k) Is Not Enough for Retirement

    Learn the basic structure of a 401(k), and a number of reasons why it may not be substantial enough to secure an individual's living upon retirement.
  4. Budgeting

    The 5 Most Expensive States for Child Care

    To get a better sense of how child care costs can fluctuate, here's a look at the costs of child care across the country.
  5. Home & Auto

    Looking To Invest In Home Improvements?

    Some home improvement projects could cost you more to complete than they’ll pay out in equity. So, here we show you the worst projects to avoid.
  6. Fundamental Analysis

    Understanding the Internal Rate of Return Rule

    The internal rate of return rule is a popular method used to compare investments or projects.
  7. Home & Auto

    Are Home Inspections Worth It? - Price vs. Value

    If you’re wondering whether home inspection is worth the investment, the following information will help you decide.
  8. Insurance

    How Does Cash-Value Life Insurance Work?

    Cash-value life insurance pays a beneficiary upon the death of the policyholder, and accumulates a cash value during the policyholder’s lifetime.
  9. Budgeting

    How to Defray Long-Term Care Expenses

    Here's a handful of options on what you can do to defray long-term care expenses.
  10. Budgeting

    The True Cost of Home Caregiving

    Caring for eldery family in-home might be unavoidable, but most caregivers don't realize the true cost of doing so.
RELATED TERMS
  1. Internal Rate Of Return - IRR

    A metric used in capital budgeting measuring the profitability ...
  2. Equitable Division

    A legal theory that guides how property acquired during the course ...
  3. Debt Consolidation

    The act of combining several loans or liabilities into one loan. ...
  4. Personal Spending Plan

    Similar to a budget, a personal spending plan helps outline where ...
  5. Nest Egg

    A substantial sum of money that has been saved or invested for ...
  6. Fudget

    A falsified statement of income and expenses. A fudget or "fudget ...
RELATED FAQS
  1. How soon should I start saving for retirement?

    The best answer to the question, "How soon should I start saving for retirement?", is probably, "yesterday," and the second ... Read Full Answer >>
  2. Can I use my 401(k) as a collateral for a loan?

    Although federal Internal Revenue Service, or IRS, regulations prohibit using a 401(k) account as collateral for a loan, ... Read Full Answer >>
  3. How does a bank determine what my discretionary income is when making a loan decision?

    Discretionary income is the money left over from your gross income each month after taking out taxes and paying for necessities. ... Read Full Answer >>
  4. What is the range of deductibles offered with various health insurance plans?

    A wide range of possible deductibles are available with health insurance plans, starting as low as a few hundred dollars ... Read Full Answer >>
  5. How do I know how much of my income should be discretionary?

    While there is no hard rule for how much of a person's income should be discretionary, Inc. magazine points out that it would ... Read Full Answer >>
  6. Why do economists think it is important to track discretionary income?

    Economists track discretionary, and disposable, income as a proxy for the growth in the financial health of average citizens ... Read Full Answer >>

You May Also Like

Trading Center
×

You are using adblocking software

Want access to all of Investopedia? Add us to your “whitelist”
so you'll never miss a feature!