During these challenging times, many of us are feeling the strain on our finances. Figuring out how best to stretch your dollars now should pay off nicely when things return to normal in your slice of the world. Here are a few ideas to help you reign in unnecessary expenses, so you have enough left over for what’s really important.
Stop Paying for Unused Services
People sheltering in place can’t take full advantage of gym memberships, but remote virtual classes for fitness studios may be available depending on the establishment. Make sure you’re not charged fees to keep your membership active until you can head back in to work out. If you have services like clothing subscriptions and you’re not going out much to showcase your duds anyway, then it’s an easy bit of excess to trim. Another unused service to trim could be your kids’ phones if you got them to keep track of your young ones, but now they’re home with you because school is cancelled.
Maximize Your Auto Insurance Savings
Your insurance premium may be calculated1, among several things, using the amount of mileage your car is driven in a year. The distance of your commute to work is a factor because the probability of an accident goes up the more you’re behind the wheel. But with many people working from home or not able to work because of their industry status, fewer people are driving and there is less insurance risk. Contact your insurance agent and see what your policy company is doing about premiums and how you can get the best rates for your situation.
Bust Out the Old Pots and Pans
The cost of eating out can easily exceed the cost of groceries,2 especially if you shop frugally. You can stretch your dollar even more if you cook bigger budget-friendly meals and freeze the portions to reheat as needed. As with all life skills, practice makes perfect, so why not hone those tasty meal making skills while saving some money? Plus, it’s a good opportunity to get some quality time in with family and friends.
Some More Ways to Save
If you get a sink or pitcher water filtration system you can save on bottled water and make less trash to help the environment. Ditto for brewing your own coffee using a drip coffee machine, a percolator, or a French press. Skipping the coffee shop can save you several dollars per cup and avoid contributing disposable cups to landfills. Also, running your dishwasher only with a full load will help cut down on water and dish soap costs.
Overall, if you invest a little time, perseverance, and patience to inventory your unnecessary expenses, you will find yourself on firmer financial footing.
1Simchuk, Delaney. (2022, Dec 21). Retrieved from: https://wallethub.com/edu/ci/factors-that-affect-car-insurance-rates/69302
2Bergen, Amy. (2023, Feb 1). Retrieved from: https://www.moneyunder30.com/the-true-cost-of-eating-in-restaurants-and-how-to-save