Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Save Yourself!

I have been collecting a few ideas on how to save some money in fairly painless ways. I have compiled the list below. Please comment if you have some other ideas. I would love to hear them!

  1. Use cold water to wash your clothes                                                          Hot water is a big energy drainer. Use cold water as often as possible to do your laundry, this will really save on your electricity bill.
  2. Hang clothes to dry                                                                                       Your dryer consumes a large chunk of energy. Hang your clothes outside whenever possible and they will smell sweet as well as save you money
  3. Open the door on your dishwasher instead of using the dry cycle or at the very least use the no heat dry setting if you have one                     If you prop the door open just a bit, the heat/steam that has accumulated while washing will dry your dishes.
  4. Use a candle to make your house smell good instead of plug in air fresheners                                                                                                     They don’t use electricity, they look nicer, and they are potentially less toxic. Just be careful if you have small children in your household.
  5. Use a crock pot                                                                                               A crock pot uses a lot less electricity than the oven. Food tastes great after cooking all day and it’s a huge time saver! (Not to mention the house smells great!)
  6. Unplug small appliances when not in use. Coffee pots, toasters, blenders, hair dryers, curling irons, straighteners, etc.                      Each one may not add up to much, but combined they can make a dent in your energy budget.
  7. Make your own laundry detergent                                                     Laundry detergent can be pretty expensive. It’s a lot more cost effective to make it yourself and it’s easy and lasts a long time.
  8. Make your own dishwasher detergent                                                 Same as above.
  9. Make your own cleaners                                                                     Instead of purchasing cleaning supplies in the store, make them yourself. Not only is it a lot less expensive to purchase the ingredients needed, it’s a lot safer to use because you know what the ingredients are. You can find recipes for the cleaners and detergents under the $ Saving Tips tab.
  10. Don’t throw those veggies out!                                                               Turn leftover veggies into soup. Keep a large Ziploc style bag in your freezer, and each night after dinner dump any remaining veggies in the bag. When the bag is filled, you have a great base for soup.You can have a separate bag for meat as well. We had soup once a week when I was a kid from the leftovers. It’s a free meal!
  11. Use “scrap” paper for printing coupons                                                     It doesn’t matter what’s on the back of the coupon, so the next time you print something in error or you have some leftover paper, use the back to print your coupons on.
  12. Use plastic grocery bags in your small trash cans                             There’s really no sense in buying small trash can bags when you get plastic bags for free at the store. They are the perfect size and work just fine.
  13. Use perfume and cologne samples to sweeten your drawers                If you get magazines or mail that contain pages with fragrance on them, open them and add them to your drawers to act as a sachet would.
  14. Use your public library                                                                          It is free and has more than you might expect. In addition to books, there are DVDs, audio books, eBook loans, and free computer and WiFi access. Not to mention all the free programs for kids.
  15. If you have children take advantage of all the free and discounted programs available in the summer                                                 Free movie matinees, free bowling, free zoo days, library programs, local park or recreation programs, children's theater matinees, just to name a few.
  16. Watch for give aways in your area                                                     
    For example, some communities offer free trees on arbor day, or free mulch after Christmas. Others have free junk haul away days. Police departments often sponsor free child ID programs and fire departments do free blood pressure checks.
So, use some or all of these ideas and save yourself some money! Please comment below if you have some money saving tips that I have missed! 
Have a great day! ~Marla

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