don’t be afraid to shop second hand.
i’ve chatted on here before about my love for browsing the aisles of baby consignment shops & i save so much money doing so. i don’t buy all my son’s clothes used, but the majority of them i do. he grows through clothes so quickly that it doesn’t make sense to buy all his clothes brand new.
i also enjoy browsing thrift stores for me and my husband’s clothes, as well as kitchen and house wares. for example, baskets are one thing that there is always an abundance of at thrift stores and buying baskets new adds up very quickly. it’s always worth searching a thrift store for an item before purchasing. you’ll be surprised with the rare items you can find!
order groceries ahead of time.
ever since my husband and i had covid in february of this year, i have used target drive up for about 90% of our grocery trips. it’s helpful to see my running total as i go, instead of getting up to the counter to be shocked at the total that now also included a handful of unnecessary items (or snacks that i was just hungry for while browsing). target circle also has all their weekly deals and savings in the target app so you can shop according to what’s on sale and the coupons available.
spend more money once than less money more often.
so this seems a bit counterintuitive since this is all about saving money and i’m saying to spend more money, but let me explain. there are a few items i own that are spendy but last me forever & i use multiple times per week. they last a long time because i put forth the money to buy it once instead of buy a cheaper/off brand of that same item that i have to re-buy more often because it’s worn already.
for example, leggings. i wear my lu lu lemon leggings at least 3x/week. they are quite expensive to purchase, but i just recently threw away my pair from when i was 17 years old & i’m now 24 years old. they were more money to start but i got about 7 years of use out of them so the money paid off in the end!
another example are my birkenstocks. i wear these pretty much everyday in the summer. they do have off brand, similar sandals, but i’ve found that these also last me 5+ years of use, so i’d way rather do that than buying a new off brand pair each year.
not every item does this apply to, but everyone probably has a couple items like this in their life. it doesn’t seem like you’re saving money initially, but you are in the long run!
don’t make big purchases on a whim.
my husband and i do not own any credit cards so we cannot spend more than we have (highly recommend!!!), but we ask each other before we spend money on expensive things. this doesn’t happen too regularly but sometimes, after spending a chunk of time thinking about something more expensive, you usually know if you truly think it’s worth it or not. and from experience, usually it’s not. it’s easy in the moment to buy out of emotions and feelings. in the moment it can be easy to think, “i need that,” when really you don’t.
eat out less.
eating out truly does add up. in the moment, a $10 chick fil a meal doesn’t seem expensive, but after 3 or 4 more times that week, it starts to show in your account. this is where meal planning can be very helpful. maybe allow one meal a week to be out and stick to that! obviously there are special occasions that pop up where eating out happens (seeing a friend, birthday party, etc.), but if you know your schedule for the week and can plan your meals accordingly, you can save money by eating out less often.
i hope these tips helped you like they’ve helped me & my family (and still are). we’re never going to be perfect, but we’re given many times per day to make healthy or unhealthy financial decisions & those decisions add up.
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