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Tuesday, January 28, 2014

How to be savvy and save money

I have a big project coming up... and I need to save some $ even thus I am currently unemployed and money is scarce...  Now, there's always room to save a few extra dollars... here are my tricks:

1) Call my internet/tv provider and negotiate a discount - most of them will do it if you're a long time client
2) decrease my food budget - this include coffees, restaurant and outing... as a result, there will be no more fancy coffee at Starbucks unless I have a star and earned a free drink...  Starbucks will also no longer be every day but rather every other day.... we'll go out on week end but cannot spend more than roughly 20$...  I can figure this out easily....  we share meal and desert in our usual vegan place... they really don't mind! Most vegans do it! Also no longer throw out food - this might mean that all 3 of us will have a different meal to finish small portions of left over but who cares???  Eat more veggies and less fruits.  Very rarely buy package stuff... always too expensive and not even good for us anyway! If you're not already vegan, cut meat once or twice a week... see what difference it makes on your grocery bill! Buy in bulk all you can...  it is much cheaper!!!
3) Movies are out!  too expensive for no reason! We'll rent from home!
4) Not buying clothes, books or jewelry for the time being
5) Very seldomly rent a car with Communauto- do we absolutely need it???
6) Put whatever is in the "change jar" by the door in another container every 3 days and cash it in at the end of the month (put in savings)...  if that money is by the door we use it, if it's not we don't! Because we pay everything cash and do not like to carry change on us, it grows quickly in that jar...
7) work out a budget where we're putting x$/week away my husband and I... and not allowed to touch it!
8) selling some stuff that we do not want/use/find beautiful anymore and saving that money too
9) any extra money that comes in, whether from me finding a job, my husband working over time, income tax returns.. or what ever...  goes in savings!

Now this may seem really restrictive...but we still have budgeted for 60$ each of pocket money per month...  to put on anything we like...  and I thought it would be really hard at first to follow that plan because I was always very careless with money and even thus I had good paying job, ended up with nothing saved...  but that is all about to change... because since I became a minimalist, I have changed the way I see spending my money... I do not get pleasure only from buying stuff... I'd rather work my ass off and save it all for one big project than spend it on useless junk...

I know this is not forever... this project (which you'll find out about later when time has come), is on a set date... and we wont need to be THAT restrictive for ever... but it feels good to work as a team with my son and husband on something we all want to do!!!

It also makes it easier if we're all align on what is important to us...  and if we know it's not forever!!

Now this is the part about how to save $... but the title also called for being savvy...  how can I do that now on such a small budget??? Well being savvy has nothing to do really with the amount spent.... you can feel like a million dollar and be poor.. it's all in your head...  you have to learn to enjoy the small pleasure...

1) eating dinner (even if it's left over) with a candle and music on a fancy table cloth
2) rent a movie, make popcorn, blast the sound and close the lights... feels like the movie!
3) reuse your old clothes in a new way - feels like  you went shopping
4) enjoy tea in a fancy mug at home with music...
5) use you fancy dinner ware if you have any...
6) spend that 60$ wisely for what I really care about... and that is on sale...  and will make me feel good! New sheets, Romantic dinner, family activity....

These are all ways that can help save money.. without feeling like you are depriving yourself...
And allow you to work towards your goal... You just have to learn enjoying being home... 

What about you?  Do you have any goals you're working for? Does this help financially achieving them?  Do you have other tips you'd like to share?

p.s. we are 3 days away from the end of January and I still have 50$ of my 60$ for the month...  Amazing no??? I will keep it and who knows? Maybe some other month I'll need it...


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