21 simple household tips that could save you thousands of dollars every year

People will go to extreme measures to save a few bucks here and there, but some of the best money saving hacks are simple, and sitting right under your nose.

We rounded up 21 household savings tips that aren’t time intensive or complicated, but can reap great rewards in the long run.

Try these out if you want to shave down your monthly bills and potentially save thousands of dollars over the course of a year.

Mandi Woodruff contributed to an earlier version of this article.

Install low-flow water faucets and save up to 60% on your water bill.

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Do you really need a faucet with fire hydrant strength flow to do the dishes?

Chances are the answer is no, and by simply replacing your sink faucets with low-flow models, you could cut your water bill by 25% to 60%. Faucet aerators cost around $US10 to $US20 a piece, which is well worth the investment.

If you want to save even more water and money, you can also install low-flow shower heads for about $US20.

Buy generic for the stuff you don't care about.

Author

On a similar note, go generic whenever possible. Ramit Sethi, author of 'I Will Teach You To Be Rich' estimates that this simple shopping habit could save you $US50 to $US500 a month.

'You have to prioritise because you can't have the best of everything,' he writes. 'Buy brand-name for the stuff you care about, and cut costs mercilessly on commodities you don't care about by buying generic.'

Areas you may be able to save money on include: toiletries, food, certain clothes, and pet supplies. What is important to you? And what are you willing to sacrifice? Establish what you want to prioritise and what you can de-prioritise.

Ignore 'Sell By' dates to stop wasting food and save up to $500 a year.

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The average American wastes about $US28 to $US43 in food each month -- roughly 20 pounds of food -- according to the National Resource Defence Council.

It helps to start ignoring 'sell-by' and 'use-by' dates. They are not federally regulated and do not indicate safety, except on certain baby foods, the NRD says. They are simply suggestions, and a lot of foods can last for 15 days after those dates.

When in doubt, throw it in the freezer to get the most out of it.

Implement the 'à la carte' method to save money on subscriptions.

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This technique takes advantage of psychology to cut our costs, and could save $US10 to $US100 a month, Sethi explains 'I Will Teach You To Be Rich.'

'Cancel all the discretionary subscriptions you can: your magazines, TiVo, cable -- even your gym,' he writes. 'Then, buy what you need à la carte. Instead of paying for a ton of channels you never watch on cable, buy only the episodes you watch for $US1.99 each off iTunes. Buy a day pass for the gym each time you go.'

It works for three reasons, Sethi writes: You're likely overpaying already, you're forced to be conscious about your spending, and you value what you pay for.

Plan your shopping trips around common sales cycles.

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Everyone knows the best times to find deals on summer clothing is typically in winter, and vice versa. But there are even more sales cycles to learn about and leverage.

For example, January is the best month to buy suits and bicycles, and May is the best month to score a deal on mattresses and refrigerators.

Clean your dryer lint trap to increase efficiency by 75%.

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It seems like a no-brainer but forgetting to clean the lint trap on your dryer makes a huge difference.

Depending how much lint builds up and the type of dryer you have, you could see your efficiency reduced by 75%.

And a less efficient dryer means two things: Higher energy bills and a shorter lifespan for your appliance.

Cook with a crock pot and save over $2,000 each year.

WeMo

A $US50 programmable slow cooker is one of the best investments you can make. With the average American family eating out or ordering in at least once a week -- and with the average takeout dinner or restaurant meal costing upwards of $US50 for a family of four -- restaurant bills add up quickly.

If a crock pot meal costs around $US2 per person, trading in a crock pot meal for take-out just once per week would mean $US2,135 in savings each year. Imagine how much you could save if you stop heading to restaurants two or three times a week.

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