5 Ways I Save Money

This post is sponsored by Groupon Coupons. All opinions are my own.

5 Ways to Save Money

My budget suffered a severe tightening after I was laid off last year. I’m now partially employed and am entrenched in the gig economy, which means I’m never sure what I’m bringing in each month. Though I was never an extravagant spender, I had to bring in the reins on my spending. Here are 5 ways I’ve tweaked my financial habits.

1. I ask myself if I can get it at home or get it free some how. For example, sometimes I want to make a latte run. I know that coffee is only about five dollars per cup, but I have the supplies I need to make delicious Vietnamese coffee at home and we have free Starbucks at my part-time day job. Less cups of coffee bought while out, more money in the bank!

2. I check for coupons on sites like Groupon Coupons. Often sites like these have partnerships with major companies like Turbo Tax. (Did you guys file your taxes on time?)

3. I check if my credit card has a partnership with any of the companies I’m purchasing from. I use the Chase Sapphire card which earns me travel points. When I need to make a purchase, I scan their partnerships to see if I can earn a higher point ratio with any of their preferred vendors. It’s an easy way to rack up points for products and services I’m going to buy anyway.

4. I find new ways to socalize. I’ve been doing more errand dates and walking dates. My friend Stephanie and I once bought coupons for oil changes, met at the mechanic’s and then caught up over adult coloring books while we waited. I also entertain in our apartment more instead of eating out.

5. I maintain current good practices, which includes, not using the emergency fund unless there’s a real emergency, paying off all credit card balances every month, borrowing from the library when possible, and cooking most of my meals.

Question: What are some financial habits you swear by?

  • lisasyarns

    I love financy posts like this. :) I think a lot about how I can reduce my spending as all those expenses, both big and small, really add up over time. Some ways I reduce my spending are limiting myself to 1 latte a week – the rest of the week I make coffee at home. I also do not buy books and instead use the library as much as I can. I have to wait longer for books but I’ve gotten really good at requesting things early, sometimes before it’s published, to minimize my wait. Lastly, we really do not eat out often. While it’s something we enjoy doing, a lot of the time I feel like I’m not really getting what I want since I have to consider my gluten intolerance. So we eat a lot of meals at home which really saves money, and we rarely order drinks when we are out since they are marked up so much!

  • Not sure if this is what you mean by #3, but online shopping through credit card portals can lead to extra cash back, which is always a plus if you’re already shopping at some of these places. My favorites are the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal and Discover Deals.

    I’m also working on saving as much as possible for the future/retirement.

  • FoodieIsTheNewForty

    I have always been super credit-averse. I never carry a balance on my credit cards and never take out loans of any kind if I can avoid them. I obsessively bargain shop – for everything! – and I buy used stuff whenever I can. Also, Ebates is a good way to get a little money back on things you would have bought anyway, when your credit cards don’t have partners who carry whatever you’re buying.

    Also, we are always up for dates that don’t involve spending money!

  • One of the culprits is eating out…but I LOVE eating out!! wahhhh!

  • I never ever carry a balance on my credit cards. I know eventually I might have to, but I can avoid it for now so I do. In fact, I actually lost track a paid my bill late last month (which is SO unlike me) and that was motivation enough never to pay late or carry my balance forward. The fee plus the interest is ridiculous!

    I also look for sales/coupons when shopping for groceries and toiletries. At first I tried doing the whole “extreme coupon” thing where I would match coupons with sales and make sure I was getting the absolute lowest price. But it got to be too much and I told myself that saving ANY money is a step in the right direction, so I center my shopping list around what’s on sale or what I have coupons for.

  • Great list, Linda! I like the idea of finding new ways to socialize. I need to cut back on the brunch and happy hour dates with friends, so errand/walking dates seem like a great alternative!

  • Best Date Ever :)