Saving money doesn't have to be all about big events. Sometimes a small money win is all you need to build some momentum. I wanted to sit down and come up with a few money wins that we've had recently.
Small Money Wins Add Up Big
The thing about little bits of savings is that they add up to bigger savings. Sometimes people will watch you do something to save money, and ask why you bother. After all, it might only save you a few bucks. Is it really worth it?
Yes! Totally worth it.
First, every dollar you save is a dollar in your pocket and not someone else's. I don't care how small the savings, a dollar is a dollar!
Second, those dollars add up. Ten bucks here, twenty bucks here, five bucks there. If you add up enough of these savings, they start taking three digits, then eventually four. That means you can save hundreds, or even thousands.
Here are a few of our small money wins.
Sort Of Lowered Our Cable Bill
We've been with the same cable company for over 15 years by my estimates. That's a long time. While I'm starting to question whether we really are valued as long term customers, we still save money just by asking. Our bill went up $35 after our year-long promos expired. A simple e-mail to my cable company and I got $25 of that knocked off. So, our bill still went up, just by a smaller amount. I guess that's sort of a win. With cable companies, that's probably the best you can hope for!
Nailed Our Holiday Shopping Credit Card Rewards
We put every dollar we spent on the holidays on our credit cards. We primarily use three, two cash back cards and one mileage card. Each card offers bonus points depending on category purchases, and this guides what card we choose. For example, our Costco Visa card offers 4% back on gas and 3% on restaurant purchases, whereas our American Express Blue Everyday card offers extra cash back at the grocery store.
Usually we have a transaction or two that we put on the wrong card, but this season, we nailed it. Every purchase was where it should have been! The holidays are the most expensive time of the year, so maximizing the amount we ‘get back' is key.
Filled In Our Wardrobe With Sales
Both my wife and I filled in some needs in our wardrobe by taking advantage of clearance sales. Personally, I got a few really cool items at Kohl's for a great price. I needed a couple of new sweatshirts, a few t-shirts for the upcoming summer, and some thin long sleeve shirts for cool summer nights. I got some great deals and checked off my list.
Sold Stuff Online
I wrote about how I sold some stuff online last month. This really helped us with some of our holiday shopping budget lines that went a bit over. It also cleared some clutter.
I have a goal to sell at least 100 items this year. I haven't started yet, but have been gathering items. Once I get going, I should be able to sell quite a few items at a time.
Kept Our Cell Phones
My wife and I have both kept our cell phones for almost a year now that they're fully paid off. Of course the temptation is to buy a newer one, but neither of us is tempted. That's ‘saving' us about $60 per month between the two phones.
Focused On Cheaper Dining Out Options
We enjoy times where we don't cook. My wife makes a lot of awesome meals, but she enjoys a break. While we haven't reduced the number of times we've dined out, we've been able to reduce our costs over the past few weeks with a few simple tricks.
- Getting a cheaper pizza option
- Ordering take-out at a meal we'd often go for sit down
- Skipping the adult beverage
- Going to a casual ‘Big Boy' restaurant instead of a fancier place
Made Calendar Items For Things To Buy Next Christmas
I've made some calendar reminders on items that we might need next Christmas season. With these, I can buy the items when they're on sale early in the season. One example is Christmas lights. We always have a line or two burn out every year. This past year was no exception. When we packed away our stuff, I noted all the different types that we would need. I've found that when stores put them out early in the year, they'll often mark them down prior to the rush when everybody starts buying them.
What Are Your Small Money Wins?
Have you had any small money wins lately? If you have, I'd love to hear about them. I'm always looking for some new ideas, because after all, every dollar saved adds up! Let me know your wins in the comments below, and thanks so much for reading!