Home > Saving Money > Seven Ways to Save Money Without Giving Up the Lifestyle You Enjoy

Seven Ways to Save Money Without Giving Up the Lifestyle You Enjoy

February 28, 2012

Saving money is easy…but it does require sacrifices. The reason so many Americans are in debt in the first place is that they want to have a certain lifestyle, and this lifestyle often requires living beyond their means. So if you’re going to start saving money rather than scrambling to pay the bills every month, you’re going to need to give up some stuff, right? Well, maybe! There are a few tricks that can help you continue to live the lifestyle you want while also spending less money every month.

Tip #1: Rent instead of buying.

Owning a home is expensive. A mortgage payment might not be much more than a rent payment, but you’ll also have to pay for homeowners insurance, maintenance, utilities, homeowners association membership, and repairs. A posh rental in an area you love might be a better choice than buying a home until you’re ready to deal with the cost.

Tip #2: Drink water or soda between every cocktail.

You don’t have to give up going out with your friends – just be smarter about your drink choices. If you order something non-alcoholic between every cocktail, your bill will be substantially lower at the end of the night.

Tip #3: Head to the pound.

That adorable pup you own may be a purebred that cost hundreds of dollars, but when it comes time to get a new pet, head to the ASPCA or another local animal shelter instead. Cute critters – often nearly purebred – are dropped off and left homeless every day. No one will know the difference at the dog park, but you’ll spend less than $100 for a dog that is already fixed and is up to date on shots.

Tip #4: Clip coupons.

You don’t need to be an extreme couponer like they show on television to rack up the savings at the grocery store. You can get coupons from Sunday papers, savings websites, and even manufacturer social media profiles, and these coupons are good on everything from shampoo to frozen foods. Pair them with sales for every more savings without resorting to purchasing generic brands.

Tip #5: Get your hair done at beauty schools.

It might be a little nerve-wracking to allow a student to work on your hair, but for basic cuts and color applications, heading to a local beauty school is a great option. Schools with working salons offer all sorts of services, including waxing, manicures, and facials, for just a fraction of the cost you’d pay at the boutique salon down the street. If all you need is your roots touched up, this is a great option.

Tip #6: Becoming a Groupon/Daily Deals/Living Social/etc. addict.

Email savings newsletters like Groupon are amazing for saving a ton of money at local restaurants, bars, spas, and so forth. Don’t use these deals as an excuse to do things you wouldn’t normally do or you’ll end up spending more…but if you like to have dinner at a nice restaurant once or twice a week or don’t want to give up your monthly massage, these deals can save you a ton of money.

Tip #7: Stock up when items are on sale.

Lastly, just play it smart and stock up on your favorite items when they’re on sale. This means dishing out a little extra money up front, but you’ll save in the long term. For example, last week, my favorite wine was on sale for $8.99 (regularly over $15) and one of the stores in my area was offering 30% off on all alcoholic products PLUS and addition 10% savings on purchases of 6 bottles of wine or more. I spent over $100 on wine, but I won’t have to purchase it again for several months and I saved over $150 compared to what I would have spent had I bought bottles here and there over the next several months.

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