How Much To Charge For Babysitting A 2 Month Old Miscellaneous Money Saving Techniques

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Miscellaneous Money Saving Techniques

How to find effective ways to beat the recession by saving money? Part IV

1. Barter system

Gather friends, family, neighbors and co-workers and set up an exchange system. Offer to babysit a family in exchange for mowing your lawn, or offer to clean someone’s house in exchange for a week of driving your child to school. You would be amazed at the opportunities and money that can be saved with an exchange system. We have a neighborhood barter system in place in my community. We set up a barter at the local post office. Anyone in the neighborhood can view the exchange and trade with other neighbors.

2. Matinee

Love movies but hate the prices? Switch your late night show to a late afternoon or early evening matinee. The price is about 50% lower and it’s a nice saving when buying the whole family. Pop your own popcorn, put it in a plastic bag and put it in a large purse and make or buy your own candy so you can only buy drinks. Food in the theater is outrageously priced. Next time you head to the movies, head to the matinee, stuff those jelly beans and licorice sticks into your purse and enjoy the savings. Also, look for movie tickets online that may be discounted.

3. Incentives – reward plan

To help you and your family spend more wisely, set up a system where rewards are given when set rules are followed. For example, if a family decides to start cooking lunch and bagging it to work and school instead of paying daily, the motivation may be that if it is strictly followed for a month, the whole family can spend Saturday at a restaurant. Zoo or favorite amusement park.

4. Check the trash

One woman had her teenage daughter clean her room. The daughter proudly did this and filled two huge garbage bags with things she no longer wanted. Out of curiosity, the mother peeked into one of the bags being thrown away. To her shock, she found a new tube of suntan lotion, two perfectly good sweaters, makeup, lotion, a picture frame, hair curlers, all the good stuff. The daughter didn’t realize that just because she wasn’t interested in things, they could be for someone else. After talking to her daughter, the mom turned around and listed the items on eBay, earning $35 for her daughter’s “junk.” My family bought several storage tubs. When we want to get rid of something, we analyze it to see if it might be useful to someone else. If so, we put it in the stock tub. Every summer we pull out the storage tubs and have a huge garage sale!

5. Off season

Next time you’re planning a vacation, consider the off-season. In general, prices for flights, hotels and cars are significantly lower than peak travel prices. When you look at all your options, you’ll find that in many cases you can move closer to the date you’d like to travel. For example, flying to Hawaii before June 8 is considered off-season, while June 9 is peak. One day makes a huge difference in price.

6. Buffet meals

When taking the family out for dinner, consider restaurants that have a buffet. In many cases the prices are excellent and a parent can share with a small child. In addition, many buffets are “all you can eat” and of course everyone chooses. Buffet restaurants have changed over the past few years. Many people are used to the old style buffet restaurants

7. Cable networks

If you have a computer upstairs and another downstairs and you’re using high-speed data, make one computer the primary and the other the backup. That way, you’ll only be charged one fee for Internet access and a small fee of $10-$15 per month for a second computer. This is a great deal! We have three computers in the house, and connecting them to the network saves us over $80 each month.

8. Free entertainment

If you’re tired of being bored, you’ll be happy to know that there are hundreds of things that don’t cost a dime. For example, if you want a little Friday or Saturday night excitement, sign up for a “ride” at your local police department, where you can go on duty with an officer who responds to real calls. Community colleges always offer free exercise classes or coffee shops have poetry readings. Fun and entertainment doesn’t have to cost anything. Some cities have special areas that are popular on weekends where you can find free concerts. Check your local newspaper and college for a list for your area.

9. Telephone / Mobile phone

Shop for the best deals first. Second, stay away from all the fun bells and whistles and just stick to the basic plan. Some people have decided to turn off their home phone and now use their cell phones on site. Since most wireless carriers offer free long distance calling, call waiting, call forwarding, caller ID, voicemail and more, it can do the same thing as a regular phone, but for less money. Why have two phones when you can have just one?

10. Domestic Remedies

Before rushing to the doctor for a sore throat, try some home remedies or over-the-counter remedies instead. For a sore throat, butter mixed with ginger and sugar will make a soothing healing paste. A hot toddy before bed is great for a cold. Simply ask your family for their home remedies and give it a try. Sometimes a simple over-the-counter medicine or herb is enough without costing you an expensive doctor’s visit.

11. Carpooling

In some larger cities, carpooling is needed to reduce smog. However, no matter where you live, carpooling can also be a big money saver. Check with co-workers to determine who lives close enough to carpool. This will save you several hundred dollars by the end of the year.

12. Insulation

Every year, hundreds of dollars are wasted from the average home due to improper insulation. Make sure there are no drafts coming out of your window, door or fireplace. Making sure your home has an adequate level of insulation will make a huge difference to your utility bill.

13. Cancellation of Subscription

Getting your favorite magazine or book in the mail is always fun, but you should cancel them, or at least most of them. If you have multiple subscriptions, select one or two to keep and cancel the rest.

14. Consolidate your errands

To save gas, organize your errand day so that you get as much done in an organized way as possible. Stay in the same geographic area and run as many of your errands as possible in that area to avoid over-driving.

15. Turn your hobby into money

Everyone has a skill – find yours and turn it into money. For example, if you have a knack for woodworking, start making children’s toys or curios to sell. Maybe you are computer literate and could teach a class at a local community college. Find something you enjoy and sell it.

16. Heating and cooling

Make sure vents in rooms not in use or garages are closed. Many people struggle to heat and cool the entire house. Instead, take the time to close off areas you don’t use. You will save a lot of money for your services.

17. Holidays

Paris, England or Germany may offer excitement, but visiting them also costs money. Unfortunately, people regularly forget about the United States and even the very state in which they live. A man has lived his entire life in Arizona. When a friend asked him in his 50s what the Grand Canyon was like, he was unable to answer because he had never been there. The next time you’re getting ready to plan your family vacation, take a look around your neighborhood and consider an exciting trip that’s not only educational, but also cost-effective. Vacations don’t have to be expensive to be fun and memorable.

18. Annual maintenance

Make a list of all the annual maintenance items for your home, such as air conditioning, heating, hot water heater, etc. Again, being prepared and working in a proactive manner can save you unnecessary expenses. Taking care of your air conditioner with an annual tune-up will reduce the risk of something going wrong during the hot summer months when it will be quite expensive to repair.

19. Car care

Keep your car oil changed, tires changed and general maintenance up to date. First, $30 for an oil change will save wear and tear on your car, which can add up to a significant amount of money. Second, you need your car to get to and from work. By not having your car in top running condition, you could be putting yourself in a bad position when it comes to the transportation you want.

20. Repair versus replace

Instead of spending $1,000 on that beautiful new couch, you might want to consider one of two options. If your sofa frame is still good, you can spend $300 to restore it or buy a good quality slipcover for $100. Your sofa will look like new for a lot less money than replacing it. Another example would be if you have a lamp that you want to replace. Consider painting it and adding a new shade rather than spending money to buy a brand new one. Maybe you have a washer, dryer, or refrigerator that runs a little slowly. Find out how much it costs to repair versus buying new. Even if you have an appliance with the wrong color, businesses offer fantastic refinishing. With a little creativity, you’ll be amazed at how much can be fixed and save money.

21. Computer Software

To keep track of your debts and credits, you need to use some type of software, such as Quicken or Quick Books. This will keep you focused on your goals and tasks while you strive to achieve them. Also, instead of buying downloadable software programs, check Download.com or Freeware.com first to see if there are free downloadable versions.

22. Previously viewed

Home videos and DVDs are hot and perfect for any family entertainment. Now you can visit the major video chains and buy previously watched videos and DVDs for about half the price. For example, at Blockbuster, you can buy any of these and get a 30-day warranty. It’s still a great way to have quality entertainment at great savings. Another great option is to record your own movies either from the TV or from one of the popular cable channels like HBO, Showtime or Disney. Rather than going to the theater every weekend, make it a special occasion. Instead, pop some popcorn, grab a soda, spread out a blanket, and create your own theater-type atmosphere.

23. Dinner guests

Invite friends over for a potluck dinner. People love to share their favorite recipe, and by splitting dinner, everyone enjoys variety while saving money. In fact, make it a tradition among your friends.

24. Ball games

Instead of spending money on overpriced items at the ball game, bring your own cooler for food. Some pro stadiums no longer allow this, so check before you go. If you have a son or daughter who plays little league or soccer, this is a great way to save money on paying high concession stand prices.

25. Discount books

Buy a discount coupon book, which usually costs around $25. If you use it faithfully and base your choices on the options in the book, you can save hundreds of dollars. Great for restaurants, hotels, car rentals, and lots of entertainment, these books provide great variety and even better discounts.

26. Pocket change

Keep a glass or some kind of container handy and throw in change every time you get home. Every time you break an account, put change in the container. You will be surprised how quickly your money will build.

27. Free

Check out freebies sites like TotallyFreebies.com or SassySue.com for all types of sample items from cosmetics to books to clothing. Most of them have no shipping fees and the ones that do are minimal. Fill out a few forms to receive sample sizes of soaps, lotions, shampoos and conditioners, etc. that are perfect for travelers.

28. Discount programs

When shopping, always keep your eyes open for discount programs. While filling out the forms and cutting the UPC codes out of the box is a pain, the money saved is well worth it. Some rebate items are not listed as offering a rebate. Check AsmartShop.com or Rebateplace.com to see if any of your recent purchases offer a rebate.

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