Home Installments That Will Save You Money if You Live in A Hot Climate

ceiling fan

Saving money can be tricky to do. Life is expensive, and little or sometimes even big things pop up at a moments notice that drain your savings and leave you praying that you’ll be able to get by until your next paycheck. When you’re young, it’s easier to get by on what you have. You might have the support of your parents to pay some of those expenses.

When you’re a little older or out on your own and starting a family, the little expenses become a bigger deal. They take from a pocketbook that is already stretched for every last penny and you’re forced to make some big sacrifices to make up for what you’re missing on the front end.

If you’re in this situation, there are things you can do to in your own home to save you money, particularly if you live in a hot climate that makes cooling your home extremely expensive.

Solar Screens

When you live in a hot climate the majority of the heat that enters your house does so through the windows. Some people keep their windows and curtains closed for this reason, but it does little to actually block the sun from heating the house as well as letting the harmful light rays in.

Obviously darker curtains make the situation worse, and nobody likes living shut into a house like a prisoner when it’s a beautiful day. To solve this dilemma, install solar screens on all of your windows. The screens alone are able to block 44% of the heat that enters your home.

This will save you from expending valuable money to cool your house in the long summer months. There is a range of colors to choose from so you can still get natural light without compromise of heat and money.

Ceiling Fans

Ceiling fans are pretty cheap to come by on their own, so they’re a great investment to make and install in each room of your home. It can definitely be a better way to go than buying and installing cooling units to cool the entire house. If you’re tired of throwing money into those air conditioning units that are hardly doing their job, you might just want to skip out on the units all together.

Ceiling fans are great because they can be turned off when you’re not in the room needing their services. Hot air rises and when there is no air movement in the room, everything feels stiff and the atmosphere feels hotter than it actually is. A little air movement makes things feel a whole 6 to 8 degrees cooler. That’s a solid way to cool things down on a budget!

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3 Tips for Managing Your Family Finances

family finance

With more than one-third of Americans not utilizing a budgeting system each month, it is easy to see why we may need a refresher on money management. Failing to properly monitor your finances, will result in an inability to get out of debt, buy a house or build a savings account. Many people find themselves living paycheck to paycheck with no hope of a financial future in sight.

The key to getting your ducks in a row, and reducing those sleepless nights, can be in creating a family budget and taking a hard look at your finances. While this may sound like a complex task, it is actually quite simple. You are just evaluating money coming in and going out. Included here are a few tips to help you manage your family finances and get you on track to a better financial future.

Assess Your Income

Before you can take any steps to manage your money, you must first be aware of how much money you actually have. By utilizing an Excel spreadsheet or something similar, you can easily input your weekly, or monthly, income. Keep track of all “extra” funds, like babysitting or craigslist sales, and monitor where that money is spent.

Knowing how much money you have coming in can be the first step towards financial success. This will allow you to understand whether you make plenty of money or if you are coming up short on a constant basis. By inputting your income into a document or phone app, you can begin to monitor where each dollar is being spent.

Evaluate Expenses

The second trick to understanding your financial situation is in evaluating expenses. Unfortunately, this is where a lot of people get tripped up. They find monitoring their expenses is a bit of an uncomfortable wake-up call and they feel like they are required to cut all extraneous purchases.

Before you take a look at unnecessary expenses, evaluate what you consider to be necessary monthly bills. Have you shopped around for home and auto insurance recently? Do you really need an extra HBO channel? Are you paying for too much data when you have wifi at home? Almost all basic expenses can be trimmed down in some way and can help you get your spending under control.

When evaluating your extraneous expenses, keep in mind, your money is your money, and no one can decide where it needs to be spent but you. If morning lattes and weekend movies keep you sane and are valuable expenditures to you, put them on the budget. Your budget is all about monitoring how much money you have and how you spend it. Whether you want to limit extra purchases is up to you.

Set Goals

Once you have evaluated your income and expenses, the last step is to simply set goals. Where do you want to be financially in five years? Do you need to build up a savings account? Do you have debt that needs to be paid off? Setting goals can help you keep your financial future in mind, even as you live in the here and now.

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You Can Get Paid Thousands of Dollars For Doing These Short Term Things

get paid

People are raised up from infancy to choose their careers based on the amount of money that they will be able to make. While many people end up going against the grind and doing what they love, even if it means that they’ll be broke or starving artists, many people choose their careers solely on the fact that they can earn good money.

Once you choose a career path, it’s a big leap to take. You’re in it for the long haul because you’ve committed to 4 years and thousands of dollars to get a bachelor’s degree. If you want a masters, that tacks on even more time and money. If you really want to make good money, that means you’re going to medical school, law school, or some trade school that teaches you the specifics of your field that very little have knowledge of. That is what qualifies you to make the big bucks.

Even after years of school, a hundred thousand dollars of debt, and maybe a couple years in the job position you’ve worked hard for, you’re left with the awareness that the $100,000 dollars that you’re making a year (if you’re lucky) isn’t quite doing to trick.

Be A Surrogate

If you’re searching for an answer on how you can make great money by virtually just living, you might want to consider being a surrogate. Considering a person who is looking for a surrogate will pay between $95,000-$150,000 to have a child through another human being, your cut of the deal could look like a $40,000 dollar paycheck.

Sure that means you have to go through the whole pregnancy process again, and again, but if you love helping people and pregnancy is something that brings you joy, this is a perfect match. 9 months of living and a birth later and you’re left with $40,000 in your bank and endless nights of uninterrupted sleep.

Open Your Dog Up for Stud Services

This is an option that you’ll have to think about on a moral standpoint. A dog who is opened up for stud services is basically used for his sperm. This is a common occurrence for dogs that are full bred, but any dog will probably have a demand for their services somewhere.

Considering you’re on the male end of the spectrum, you as the owner don’t have to go through the mess of labor and puppies, you just get to rent your dog out by the hour and make a pretty penny doing it. You’ll want to have contact with the owners of the mother. Depending on the breed, the amount of puppies conceived, and their coloring, you can negotiate a different cost amount for each puppy.

It’s all up to you whether you use your dog to make money, but in all honesty…what male would say no to sex?

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How I save money without using coupons

I have been taking a break from using coupons. I just got burned out from printing and cutting coupons and going to so many stores to get the deals. I started this blog to share how I save money using coupons but I want to start sharing other ways to save money because there is so many ways.

Here are some of the ways I have been saving my family money:

shop sales: I get the Penny Saver on Wednesday that has all of the local stores sales flyers. I look through each one of them and checkout that week’s sales. Then I write down my list of which items I am getting at the stores and I try my best to stick to the list when I go shopping.

shop at Aldi: I really hope you have an Aldi in your area. I love Aldi so much they have great sales every week especially on produce and dairy. They have their own brand of products and you have to pay $0.25 for a cart so they don’t have to hire someone to corral the carts but you do get your quarter back when you put your cart back. You also have to bag your own groceries. They have started to carry a lot more organic products and have lower product prices than my other local stores. I save so much money by doing a majority of my shopping at Aldi.

limit your trips: I always make a shopping list that way I don’t forget anything and it saves me money because I don’t buy extra stuff. I try to pick a specific day to goocery shopping and pickup everything I need  in one stop. If I have to go out midweek for an item I might see other items while I am there and come home with more stuff.

menu

 

meal plan: I did a post about this last week. You can read it here.  Every Sunday I write out my menu plan for the week that way I don’t have to try to figure out everyday at 5pm what we are having for dinner and it keeps us from getting takeout

Target Cartwheel app– If I shop at Target I always checkout the Target Cartwheel app first where you can save money on specific products. Here is an example of one of the discounts this week 50% off Archer Farms Spiral Ham and that is just one of the great discounts they have this week. You can use it up to 4 times on each product so you could buy 4 Spiral Hams and get 50% off each of them.

IPhone Apps-There are so many good IPhone apps that can help you save money. Here a few I have been using lately:

Krazy Coupon Lady– You can find store deals and search by store to find out the deals you can get. You can also print coupons from this app.

Checkout 51-If you are grocery shopping you really should download and checkout Checkout 51 app. They list out the week’s offers and if you purchase any of the   products on this weeks offers you just click on each item and then upload the receipt and then they will put money into your account. You do have to reach $20 before asking for a payout but it is so easy to upload receipt and a little bit of money here and there can add up.

Ibotta– Ibotta  is similar to Checkout 51. You search by store and you will see the list of offers and if you purchase any off those items you unlock them and upload your receipt and they will put money into your account. You do have to reach a $20 balance to have the money put into your paypal account or receive a gift card.

Amazon Subscribe & Save- I have Amazon Prime and order quite a bit from Amazon.  I get all of my paper products and more from Amazon. If you have at least 5 items on your Subscribe & Save you get an additional 15%. I don’t have to leave my house it gets delivered right to my door. I also don’t have to watch for sales and I never run out of the products .

Pantry Challenge– use what is in your pantry to make your menu plan. You won’t be wasting as much food and you won’t have to buy as much food or no food at all for the week. Here is a great post about a Pantry Challenge.

What are some ways that you save money?

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Tips and Tricks to Make the Best Coffee from French Press

I am considering that you are a coffee lover because only coffee lovers seek for the French press coffee maker and some experienced tips to make the best cup of Joe from French press coffee makers. There is no doubt that French press will make you the splendid coffee you will ever taste and most of the coffee drinkers know that. You need an experienced review to get the excellent knowledge about which French press you should have and what tips to use if you want to have the best cup of coffee every day in your life.  In this article, you are going to have this knowledge and it may fulfill your demand of best taste. Let’s start learning.

Factors That Improve the Taste

Making coffee starts with water and the quality of water matters. If you use a better quality of water then you will have a great taste of coffee at the end. To get the solution, you can use a quality filter at the faucet. Similarly, the freshness of coffee beans matters. Try to use coffee beans which are maximum 10 days old.Trying these beans will give you a noticeable taste but if you will use very fresh beans, you will have an immature taste of coffee.

Another factor that can change the taste of coffee completely is the beans grinder. If you have a coffee beans grinder of low quality, then the ground coffee size will be uneven. It will result in some coffee particles to penetrate filters because filters are made by international standards and the low quality grinder can grind beans into uneven sized particles and some fine particles may cross the filter. This can ruin the taste entirely. Also, cheap grinders can burn the taste of coffee because of the friction of blades may heat up the ground coffee. That’s the reason, experts only advice to use the great quality coffee beans grinder. If you are interesting to buy some great grinders, you can visit this website.

The quality of French press also matters in this case. If you have a coffee maker already, then compare your coffee maker with those which have splendidly great reviews. If you want to buy one, then here is a complete list of top yet cheap coffee press you can use.  

coffee-563800_960_720

Tips to Use for the Best Taste

It will be easy for your guys to remember all tips on your finger if I will enlist all tips. Before that, make sure that you have read the factors that improve the taste.

  • Stir the coffee while it steeps and you will get a great strong taste of coffee
  • Try to get experienced and for that, you should trust on your nose. First, you will smell an acid smell because of the coffee oil shocking with heat. Then you have to push down the power button at the exact time when the acid smell will return.
  • Cleaning the French press is also a tip because cleaning a French press will cause a great taste every time. You can use baking soda to clean your coffee press.
  • If you love ice coffee, then you can place your French press in a fridge for the whole night and in the morning use the cold water and you will have your required coffee.
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Menu Planning

 

menuplanning

I have really been getting into meal planning, so I don’t go crazy at 5pm trying to figure out what to make or just staring at my pantry trying to put ingredients together to make dinner. Meal Planning also saves you money because you don’t have a tendency to go out to eat because you already have your menu planned out. Plus it helps you create an easy grocery list.

When I create my grocery list I usually write it out by aisle, most of the stores are setup similarly. You can get your grocery shopping done faster and won’t forget items and have to go back later.

I do my meal planning on Sunday night because I go grocery shopping on Monday mornings. The first thing I do is look through my cupboards and pantry and figure out what we already have and what meals I could make out of those items. Then I look through my Pinterest boards for ideas. I just recently alphabetized my boards so I can find them easier.

There are tons of articles out there that you can find on meal planning with printables that will help meal planning even easier.

You can also look at the sales flyers for the week and see what is on sale and do your menu according to what is on sale. So if chicken is on sale this week, you can stock up on chicken and make a couple of meals with chicken this week.

My friend Angie over at Angie’s Angle has several meal planning posts that will help you out.

Ease of Grocery Shopping List with Meal Planning

How to Meal Plan Part 1

How to Meal Plan Part 2

Here are some great Menu Planning Printables and posts that I think are great resources

Free Menu Planning printable

Easy Way to Meal Plan for a year with free printables

Meal Planning Made Easy

I have a Meal Planning Pinterest Board you can look at for more ideas or inspiration.

Do you meal plan if so what tips do you have to make meal planning easier?

 

 

 

 

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April Stitch Fix Review #stitchfix

I am always excited when I get my Stitch Fix box in the mail every month. This month I asked for a grey pair of jeans and some spring tops. I do want to say that I was very disappointed in this month’s box I didn’t keep anything. Three of the items were way too expensive to even consider keeping even if I did like them.

Ok let me show you what I got

 

Donna Morgan Jade V-neck Dress $98. It was too small and way too expensive.

Donna Morgan dress

Papermoon Magguie Lasercut Detail Blouse $44. This top is not my style at all. Just Black Faye Skinny Jean $88. These were to small and too expensive

Papermoon Blouse

Skies are Blue Zemo Embroided Top. This top was too small and not my style at all.

Skies are Blue Top

Eden Society Westwood Dot Lined Blazer $98. This was also too small and too expensive.

Eden Society Blazer

Here is the style cards that help you know how you can style the items you receive.

style cards

I will lose my $20 styling fee this month because I didn’t keep anything. But there was nothing I even remotely liked enough to keep. I am going to try one more fix from Stitch Fix. This is my #12 box I would think by now they would have my style somewhat down.

If you want to see my previous Stitch Fixes you can do so here.

If you want to try out Stitch Fix for yourself you can sign up here.

This post contains affiliate links.

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Effects of High Taxes on the Family Unit

taxes

Taxes are the necessary evil of the world. For centuries people have been taxed on their earnings so that the greater good of the state as a whole can be fulfilled. The tricky thing is that everybody has different opinions on how much tax is appropriate to enstow upon the people. The amount taxed ranges from individual, to family unit, to millionaires who own fortune 500 companies, all depending on how much they make and all that they can claim as a writeoff.

The inability to agree on an amount to tax seems to be one of the conflicts that fronts political movements and candidates running for senate and president. Everyone can say what they will about how much a government should be involved in the lives of people, but in the end, when an individual gets taxed on the equivalent of half of their hard earned dollars, the complaints start flying, no matter what they agree is right on the political side of things.

Here are some of the effects of high taxes on a family unit alone:

Parents Can’t Provide

High taxes mean that less money gets transferred to the family unit. People might make a certain amount of money that sets them above the poverty bracket, but because income is measured before taxes, it’s not an adequate representation of how many people are actually living below the poverty line. The directly affects the family unit because there is way less income to live day to day than there would be if taxes were lower.

Wages Stay Low

When a business is taxed on all of their dealings, it directly takes money out of the pockets of the individuals working for the said company. An employer physically can’t afford to pay their employees well because the money is being taken out on the top.

If businesses were taxed less, there could then be regulations made that companies would have to appropriate that money towards increasing their employee wages. This puts more money into the direct hands of the people, putting more money into the economy, creating growth without government being the middleman.

Taxes are a convoluted mess. It is pretty clear that there is not an immediate fix to the problems facing the economy in regards to this issue. As everyone has different opinions, and legislation on the matter is filled with loopholes and contradicting requirements, it is unsure if the controversy surrounding tax will ever be settled.

In any case, if you ever feel you’ve been personally wronged by the tax system, you can always take a stand and challenge those who oppose you in this matter. That’s how legislation gets changed.

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Getting Away Together: 3 Tips for Budget-Friendly Family Travel

family-travel

Vacations can be expensive and, as every parent knows, they are even more important after you have children. One of the greatest ways to develop and strengthen bonds with your kids is by “getting away from it all” and just enjoying family time together; no household chores, schoolwork or work responsibilities to get in the way.

Unfortunately, traveling can become expensive. Putting your entire family on a plane, renting cars, and paying for recreational activities can really add up. So if the tropical island vacation is off the agenda, what other options do you have available? Included here are a few tips for budget-friendly travel with your family.

Timeshares

While some people consider timeshares to be a terrible investment, in many cases they can be a good option for families. A timeshare is basically a property that you own a “share” of and gain use to it for a set amount of time each year. You help pay maintenance and basic rental fees on the place so that you can stay there for your vacations.

Timeshares exist all over the globe. You can get a timeshare in sunny California, one near the skiing slopes of Colorado, or even a timeshare on the Florida beach. Take stock of your family’s needs as well as traveling abilities (flying vs. driving), before investing. Keep in mind, most families with timeshares will always take their yearly vacation to their share, so make sure it is a place you love before you invest.

Road Trip

One of the easiest ways to reduce travel costs is to cut out flying. Saving on airfare can be astronomical when you load up the kids in a car to drive to your destination. Driving can be prohibitive if you have antsy toddlers, but most kids should be able to acclimate to the journey with plenty of stops.

Road trips offer plenty of time for family bonding, talking and interaction. There are plenty of road trip friendly games you can play as well as fun snacks to pack in the car. Bring a frisbee for a little leg stretching at rest areas and remember to be flexible. Sometimes everyone needs a break from the car, even if it means falling behind on your itinerary.

Rough It

The most budget friendly method of traveling and vacation is in going camping. Most campsites will be less than $10 per night and there is plenty of activity to enjoy in the woods. By packing all of your own food, you are guaranteed to avoid overspending on the trip and your kids can gain real world outdoor adventures.

Take time to catch frogs in a local creek, explore hiking trails, skip rocks across the lake, or go fishing. Sunbathing, reading, napping and sandcastle building are great low-key options as well. Evenings spent around a campfire are the perfect time to bond as a family and, if you confiscate all electronics before the trip, you should have your kids uninterrupted attention.

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Little Things You Can Do to Save Big Money on a Remodel

remodel cost

It seems that little in life is cheap. Inflation continues to rises on every product you consume while the money you’re making to work a 9 to 5 job is hardly covering the mortgage and the car payment.

You want your family to live a privileged life. You want them to have everything you never had growing up, or you want them to have everything you had and then the world on top of that. But it just doesn’t seem to work out that way no matter how hard you work and no matter how much education you receive. Life is one large game of “the right place at the right time”.

For someone like you, who may neither be wealthy or poor, every penny counts. It may come as a surprise to you, but even the wealthiest of people like to save. The wealthy ones who don’t care are often the ones to run out of money in the end.

If you’re in the midst of a remodel and are looking for ways to save money, here are some little things you can be doing that will save you big in this time:

Get Price Estimates

There are a lot of things that you’re not going to be able to do yourself in a remodel. The fact that you’re going to have to spend money to have somebody else do what you think you can do is a tough bullet to bite, but you’d rather do it right than risk the expensive repercussions of a job done wrong. In this case, you’re going to save yourself money by looking around at your options and asking for quotes.

A quote is just a preliminary assessment done by the company to estimate how much money the workload is going to cost you. If you go to different companies and they give you drastically different quotes for the same amount of work, you’ll know better which place is going to save you big in the process.

Make Dump Runs Yourself

The remodeling process is one that is filled with a lot waste and trash.  It’s tempting to want to have the trash guy come and take everything away, but you might want to consider rethinking this. If you clean up your own mess and borrow a friends truck to make the dump runs yourself, you could save yourself money. In a lot of places, people pay upwards of $250 a year to have somebody pick up their garbage. Is it worth the savings to just do it yourself?

Do the Painting Yourself

Although paint is relatively easy to deal with, this is an area you’ll only want to do yourself if you’re comfortable with the idea. Do research ahead of time to learn the proper way to prep and jump into action. If you have two hands and you tape off all areas you don’t want paint to find its way into, you’ll be able to save several hundred dollars, if not a thousand painting your remodeled house yourself.

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Three Tips For Controlling Your Closet

closet1

There is more to staying in control of your closet than just watching what clothes you are buying and bringing into your home. However, not only are you about to learn how to keep your closet need and organized, you’re also going to learn how to weed out the stuff you don’t need and how to save some money on the stuff you still need to buy.

Clothes don’t last forever, so people always have a need to do some clothing shopping. Things fade, rip, get stains, and you might even gain or lose weight and not be able to wear the same stuff anymore. Purchasing clothing is a never ending battle, kind of like dirty laundry and dirty dishes.

Get organized

Start your new level of control over your closet by getting it organized. There are a few ways that you can do this. You could just put stuff in a dresser that doesn’t need to be hung, and then hang the rest. However, you may get tired of digging through underwear and t-shirt just to get to a pair of socks.

Don’t be afraid to sort and color-code. Just because all of your black shirts are hung together, from no sleeves across to long sleeves, doesn’t make you obsessive. Organizing your closet may also mean getting rid of some stuff.

Weed Some Out

One of the best ways to figure out what you can get rid of in your closet is to start out by turning all of your hangers backwards. After six months, whichever hangers have remained backwards, because you didn’t wear any of those things, mark the clothes you need to get rid of. If you haven’t worn them in six months chances are you won’t miss them.

Don’t just throw out your clothes that you no longer want. Whether it’s that you just don’t wear them anymore, or they don’t fit right anymore, things that could still be worn by someone should be donated to a thrift store.

Shop Smarter (And Cheaper)

If you have a consignment store, or a place that buys used name brand clothing, in your area, you could make some money with your old clothes and use that money to buy some new, or new to you, stuff. Shopping at resale stores is a great way to save money on your wardrobe, especially if you go through clothing quickly, because of work or weight loss/issues.

You can also find great deals on new clothing, even at your favorite stores, by keeping an eye on clearance sections. Once you’ve realized how much you can save on used and clearance clothes you may find it hard to ever pay full price for a piece of clothing again.

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Budgeting To Take Care Of Your Elderly Parents

senior-care

Your parents raised you, they paid your way through your first couple decades of life, and now they need you to help take care of them. It’s part of the cycle of life. It’s why, hopefully, they raised you to be responsible adults, with good credit, and the ability to help them out.

There are a few ways you can help take care of your parents, and some of them cost more than others. However, is there any cost too great for the people that brought you into this world?

Move Them Into Your Home

When your parents get older and can no longer live on their own, one of the options you have is to have them move in with you, if you have the space for them. That means making more room, and it will also mean getting used to buying more groceries, bigger electric and heat bills, and probably a few other expenses.

If your parents are having medical issues you may also need to have a regular nurse come in for them, or even take them to numerous different doctor appointments. While they’ll, hopefully, have their own medical insurance, you’ll still be spending money getting them where they need to go.

Find out if you can get some assistance from the state you live in for taking care of them. Some places have this available and it can take a lot of the strain off you and your paycheck. You can also shop for groceries and other items in bulk, to save money.

Consider Assisted Living

If you don’t have the space in your home for your parents, or they need a little more help than you can handle, you may want to consider getting them into assisted living. Some insurance will possibly cover portions of this, and if your parents have a pension or some kind of savings, that can also help pay.

If your parents don’t have the means to cover anything over what insurance covers, that is going to probably end up coming out of your pocket. It can help to have a savings set up that can go toward caring for your parents.

When It’s Time For The Nursing Home

If your parents are at a point where even assisted living isn’t enough, maybe they have a terminal illness, a nursing home is probably your final answer. With any luck you can find one that is fully covered by their insurance, but again, you may need to dip into your own parental health savings fund.

Your parents need you, just like you needed them as a child. Be prepared to help them out as they get older and start saving now. Think of it just like you would your child’s college fund. You don’t want to have to go into debt just because your parents need your help.

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5 Ways To Save Money On Projects at Home

 

home projectIf it seems like you can’t get your budget under control, one of the best places to start really analyzing and trimming off excess costs is by looking at what types of things you do at your home. Cutting back on certain unnecessarily financial expenditures in that realm can give you significant savings without changing your basic standard of living.

Five ways to save money this way specifically include buying a sewing machine, getting smart kitchen gadgets, using DIY designs, setting up a home budget, and cleaning things instead of buying new ones.

Buy a Sewing Machine

Think of all the times where you have to buy new curtains or covers, or that you have to throw clothes away because they rip, tear, or don’t fit anymore. All of that becomes a significant expense, but if you just invest in a sewing machine, you can handle all of that stuff yourself and easily save yourself hundreds of dollars every time you make a few quick stitches instead of having to re-invest in pre-done work.

Get Smart Kitchen Gadgets

When you think about buying bread, or buying pre-sliced cheese and veggies, or spending lots of time cooking rice or boiling eggs, you realize how much time and money are spent on these efforts. But, by buying practical kitchen gadgets, you can save all of those resources directly, and you’ll even have more of an opportunity to customize flavors, textures, and ingredients. Though there’s an initial investment in some things like blenders and bread makers, the sooner you start using them, the sooner you’ll start saving money.

Use DIY Designs

There’s also the matter of home decorations. You can easily spend hundreds of dollars purchasing someone else’s products for decoration purposes. Why not spend half of that, or even a quarter of it, making your own decorations? And that way, it will be completely personalized as well, instead of being someone else’s presence in your home.

Set Up a Home Budget

And sometimes, all you need to do to save money on your home projects is look at the money that you’re spending. Once you’ve set up a home budget and gotten all of your expenses organized, it’s very easy to decide which parts are unnecessary to your overall happiness, and simply cut them out of the next cycle.

Clean Things Instead of Buying New

And when things start getting dirty or looking rough around the edges, many people just throw them away and buy new things. This can be a terrible waste, as many times all you need to do is look up some basic cleaning techniques, especially for things like leather furniture or certain kinds of carpet.

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Four Things You Can Do To Freshen The Look Of Your Home

clean home

You don’t need to do a complete home renovation in order to update the look of your home and give it a newer, more fresh look. There are a few things that you can do that will have your home looking new, and people will think you put far more time and money into it than you did.

Instead of hiring someone to come in and remodel your home, these are all more simple things that you can do on your own. They’ll make it look like you hired a professional decorator, at the least.

Do A Deep Cleaning

Sometimes the best thing you can do for your home is just clean it. That means more than just organizing your belongings. Actually deep clean your home, with some elbow grease.

Scrub down the walls, unless you’re planning on painting them. Clean the windows, inside and out, and window blinds, or wash curtains. You could even just put up some fresh curtains. Get a steam cleaner and get your carpet super clean and looking new.

Paint The Walls

If just washing your home’s walls isn’t enough to brighten them and freshen them up, consider painting them. You don’t have to buy the most expensive paint at the store, and painting is pretty easy, as long as you tape off certain areas and cover your floor.

Think about painting an accent wall, to add a nice bright focal point to your room. or, you could spend some time on YouTube and Pinterest and find some creative ideas for painting with different textures.

Invest In Some New/Used Furniture

Maybe your furniture is starting to look a little old and tired. Find out if there is a discount furniture place around you where you can get new furniture at almost used prices. Or, maybe you could just reupholster some of the stuff you own, to give it a new look.

You can also find great, cheap deals on furniture at thrift stores. Sometimes the items are less than perfect, but often you can find new and nearly new items used when you peruse the resale shops around your area.

Redecorate On A Budget

You can also find home decorations while you are shopping resale. If you don’t have any luck, consider looking for home decor items at dollar stores or in the clearance sections of your favorite stores.

Sometimes you’ll want to invest a little more money in a certain piece. Maybe it’s a focal point of the room, or maybe you just want something that’s high quality and long lasting. That could be the purchase of a beautiful rug, or maybe the investment in a home theater system.

It’s your home, but you don’t want to go broke making it look great. Save some money by doing things yourself and shopping smart!

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Six Ways To Save When Shopping For Your Family

family shoopingShopping, no matter what it is you need to buy, is not cheap. Groceries that once cost a lot less than they do now seem to go up in price on a weekly basis. Often, for many families, there is more money going out of the house than there is coming in.

This is the reason it can be important to find ways to save when you do need to shop, whether it’s for food, clothing, or something else. If you think that coupons are the only way to save money, and that seems like a lot of work, you’re wrong.

Know When To Buy Things

Certain things go on sale at certain times of the year, so it helps to know when the best time to buy things like TVs and computers is. It can save you money, and that’s what this is all about, right? Consumer Reports has shared when the best months are to buy nearly everything you need.

Search For The Best Prices

While flipping through dozens of store ads, in print or online, may seem a pain, it can save you some money. You might have to spend a little extra on gas to shop at three different places, but if your savings is greater than the gas money, why not do it?

Use Coupons And Discount Codes

Whether you are shopping online or in a store, you can save money with coupons and discount codes. There are numerous sites online with codes and coupons, and you don’t even always have to print them out. Plus, you can find discounts at restaurants and other places for your birthday too.

Buy Off Brands

Although not always, often a store brand or off brand of a product will work, or taste, just as well as a name brand item does. With store and off brand products you can usually save a buck or two per item. That can add up a lot when you are shopping for a family of three or more.

Check The Clearance

Always check the clearance section when you go shopping, no matter what you are shopping for. Yes, even groceries. You’ll find some great deals, and although you may stray from your shopping list, that will be one less thing you need to pick up on a future trip to the store. Online shopping offers clearance buys as well.

Start Using Less

Figure out how you can get by with less things, and you will start spending less money. If you find you are always throwing away leftover, cook smaller meals, buy less groceries. Always make sure to try on clothes, so you don’t bring home items that don’t fit. There are tons of things you can do to spend less and bring less into your home.

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