Shop less, save more
- Know your budget and stick to it – don’t be tempted to spend more.
- Look for sales and discounts. But don’t buy something just because it’s on sale. If you don’t need it or won’t use it, it’s a waste of money, no matter how cheap it is. Also, watch for prices that have been raised and then put on “sale.” You’re not really getting a deal.
- Buy used or second-hand when possible. It's not just cheaper, it's also better for the environment. For instance, will a used car meet your needs just as well as an expensive new one?
- Compare prices on the Internet instead of driving to different stores. Consider buying online, too – it sometimes cost less. Just remember you will pay shipping fees, which adds to the price you see.
- Plan your spending – don’t buy on impulse. Try the item before you buy it to be sure it’s what you want. For example, rent a bike for an afternoon to see if you really like it. It's better to spend a few dollars to try it out than spend several hundred and find you hate it!
Saving on food
- Never shop on an empty stomach. You'll buy more because you're hungry.
- Make a list before you go to the store; it helps you remember what you need and you’ll be less likely to buy things you already have. If you can avoid last-minute trips to the convenience store, you’ll likely save money.
- Don’t shop by committee. When a group of people buy groceries, you always buy more than you need.
- Check the newspapers and flyers for coupons and sale notices. Visit store web sites for printable coupons. Over a year, you would be surprised how much you can save!
- Plan meals based on what’s on sale.
- Buy extra when something is on sale – as long as you can store it and use it later.
- Consider buying cheaper brands. For example, store brands can cost less and be just as good as national brands.
- Shop where prices are lowest. Be loyal to saving, not to stores!
Saving on clothes
- Buy in the “off season.” Clothes are always cheaper at the end of the season.
- When you buy new clothes, make sure they match things you already own. Mixing and matching gives you more outfits for less money. And, you’ll use less closet space.
- Avoid fads – stick with the classics and you’ll never be out of style. Or spend less on items you’ll only wear a few times.
- Don’t spend a lot on kids’ clothes – they will quickly outgrow them. Shop at discount stores for these items.