Looking for some good tips on how to save money? Start with the ten listed here.
1. Save money on air conditioning. If there are only a few weeks of hot weather in your area, you may get by with just fans. You can have one blow cooler air up the stairs from the basement. You can also put a box fan in the windows on the shaded side of the house.
2. Save money on airfare. Use a drive/fly combo. It might take two hours to drive to a larger airport, but it could save you hundreds of dollars on the connecting flight.
3. Save on appliances. Buy store returns. Sometimes you can get store returns that still have a guarantee. I once bought a $400 clothes dryer for $99 this way. It had been used for a couple of weeks but still came with a full warranty.
4. Save on boats. Consider renting instead of buying. Add all costs for a year (insurance, licenses, gas, maintenance, equipment, repairs, dock fees, storage fees, depreciation, trailer, a trailer hitch, etc). Divide this by the number of times you are likely to use the boat. This gives you your cost-per-use. Now double this, because you’ll never use it as often as you think. If this figure is more than the cost of a daily rental, just rent.
5. Save money on carpet cleaning. Ask your carpet cleaner if he will discount the price for just doing the “traffic” areas. This means he won’t move anything, but just clean the visible areas (that’s where the dirt is anyhow). Some cleaners may not move things much anyhow and will charge for the full square footage of the room if you don’t ask.
6. Save money on a new car. Bring a friend. His job will be to say things like, “Why don’t you wait until next week to decide.” This keeps the pressure on the salesperson to give you the best deal going. Your friend can also watch for things you might miss, like extra charges, scratches in the car, etc.
7. Save money on a used car. Pay cash. Paying cash will always save you money on interest, of course. If you have a car that is drivable now, with no loan on it, reconsider borrowing to buy a new one. Whatever payment you think you can afford, start putting that much in the bank until you can afford a good used car.
8. Save on electricity. See if your electronics are on “stand-by.” Unplug VCRs and other electronics that have “stand-by” modes. They often are using 25 watts even when they are “off.”
9. Save on heating costs. Warm yourself instead of the room. A sweater and a cup of tea as a habit can let you knock a few degrees off the thermostat with no loss of comfort.
10. How to save money on hotels? Negotiate. We paid just $6 per night for a great room in a resort town in Ecuador, instead of the usual rate of $12, just because we were willing to walk away. Even here in the United States, where negotiating room rates is less common, we have asked for and received a lower rate several times.