When it comes to putting more money in your pocket, there are two ways to do it: earn more or spend less.
Even if you aren’t in a position to earn more at the moment, a few little spending adjustments made on a daily basis can go a long way.
From practical food-buying tricks to reframing the way you think about your finances, we’ve listed some of the easiest tweaks below, including the best from a Reddit thread on quickly cutting your spending.
1. Plan out and cook your own meals. Dining out often is a huge money drain. — MrTimSearle
2. Clean out your fridge and pantry. You’ll find good food you didn’t know you had. — InsaneRay
3. Buy in bulk the things you would normally buy. You’ll get more for your buck. — cjs3
4. Opt for non-canned goods. Fresh produce and dried beans are typically cheaper and healthier than canned items. — BellabitchTheStrange
5. Use coupons. It’s easy to forget coupons you’ve cut out at home so try using an app instead. Cellfire, Coupons.com, and Grocery IQ give you easy and fast access to available coupons and let you send them to a loyalty card.
7. Stop buying microwave dinners. The mark-ups are crazy. You could make better, healthier meals for less. — yawrn
8. Don’t buy more groceries than you actually need or can keep. Throwing away food is the same as throwing away money. — nowgetbacktowork
9. Use a slow cooker. Throw in some veggies, beans, and meat, and you’ll have lunches and dinners for the whole week. — i-hear-banjos
10. Make your own coffee. Those $US2 to $US4 coffees add up. — StickleyMan
11. Bring your lunch to work. You’ll cut your lunch tab in half or more by making it yourself. — ILikeLampz
12. Stop buying bottled water. Use a glass or refill a bottle with tap water for free. — Cam_Harris
13. Don’t go out to drink. Drinks with dinner can add $US10 or more a person, and a night at the bar can easily cost $US40. — typographicalerr
14. Avoid your favourite stores. Don’t stop into them “real fast,” don’t visit their websites, and unsubscribe from their emails. You’re less likely to buy something if you never see it in the first place.
17. Buy quality items. If you skimp on the important things, you may spend more in the long run. For instance, spending $US30 on shoes every six months costs more than spending $US60 on a pair that lasts years. — tahlyn
20. Before you buy something, ask yourself: What impact is this purchase going to have on my life? That can put an end to impulse spending. — _yertle_the_turtle
21. Change how often you spend on indulgences. Rather than give them up entirely, limit the frequency. For example, if you go to Starbucks daily, try going weekly, and if you go the movies weekly, try once a month. — stringliterals
22. Put half of your paycheck into savings. It forces you to figure out how to live on less. — ntran2
23. Always pay off your credit card at the end of every month. You avoid paying interest and get in the habit of living within your means. — nova_cat
24. Set up auto transfers on your bills so you’re never late. Late fees are a waste. — nowgetbacktowork
25. Get checking account alerts on your phone or opt out of overdraft protection. Otherwise, you’ll pay steep fees for overdrafting your account. — nowgetbacktowork
26. Before you buy something on sale, ask yourself: Would I buy this without the discount? If you’re just buying something because it’s on sale, you probably don’t really need it.
27. Spend your money where you spend your time, and cut the rest. If you’re a runner, you need good shoes, and if you spend a lot of time in the car, you should invest there. This kind of thinking helps you trim the superficial stuff that does not add value to your life. — GreyFoxNinjaFan
28. Wait at least two days before buying anything over $US50. You may no longer want it or forget it altogether. — Newmoney4me
29. Trade cable for Netflix. You’ll have access to more TV shows and movies than you can watch for just $US7.99 a month. If you like to watch sports, go to the bar or a friend’s house. — Newmoney4me
30. Ask your internet provider if it has any promotional rates. You could see your rate drop by as much as $US20. — Aerospacing_Out
31. Buy discounted gift cards. Sites such as CardCash and Raise.com sell gift cards for less than they’re actually worth. Even if you can’t get through the day without your Starbucks latte, you could buy a $US100 Starbucks gift card for $US89 and save 11%.
32. Cancel magazine and newspaper subscriptions you don’t read. Many people will let them stack up instead of picking up the phone to cancel. — mrhoopers
33. Compare rates of local electric companies. You may no longer be getting the best deal available. — Aerospacing_Out
34. Wear a sweater in the house, and turn down the heat a couple of degrees. Over time, you’ll save on electricity. — MrTimSearle
35. Use a surge protector, and turn it off when you leave the room. If you’re not there, why keep everything on? These tips can help reduce your electricity bill even further.
37. Get car insurance quotes. Companies competing for your business may quote you a lower rate. — Aerospacing_Out
38. Look into refinancing your car or home. You could see your payment immediately drop. — Aerospacing_Out
39. Frequent the library. Get books, movies, and music for free. — AnnabellBeaverhausen
40. Buy your clothes from the thrift store. Chances are, no one will be able to tell the difference. — Newmoney4me
41. Ride your bike to work. Not only will you save on car or public transportation costs, you’ll be healthier. — Colonel-Rosa
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