Let’s face it. An economic crisis is no time to have money troubles. But, most of us can’t help it. We work hard and try to live the life we want. Sometimes the cards are not dealt in our favor. Even if we have picked up some personal finance lessons along the way, we still seem stuck in mud. We have become blind sighted by our current economic crisis, and need to adjust our situation to live as frugally as possible in order to make what we have last.
Now we may not be able to sell our SUV or home in the next month or two, but there are some alternative ideas to help cushion the economic blow to your wallet. https://www.fedra.com
1 – Buy generic versus brands. Branded items, like Cheerios, Charmin, Christian Dior, are so ingrained in our conscious as superior that we forget that other items exist. Unfortunately, we also forget the impact on our wallets. By starting to buy generic items we can start to see savings of $25 or more on a shop
2 – Rethink entertainment. Instead of buying $10 a piece movie tickets or spending $5 at the video store, consider joining Netflix, where you can download free movies to your computer or get several movies delivered to your door for the cost of less than two movies tickets, or consider other forms of cheap entertainment. $40 a month
3 – Downsize the dinner options. It feels almost luxurious to go out for dinner, knowing others have prepared a delicious meal so you don’t have to. And it may seem one meal won’t kill you but saving $10 by eating at home or skipping the $5 appetizers or saving $5 on tips with counter service can easily add up to $200 to $300 for the entire month.
4 – Dump cable TV. I have eliminated cable a long time ago, and just rely on Internet service. Not having TV may seem hard at first, but the result has been a life changer for me. I am more creative, like writing this blog, and have more free time to pursue the things I want to do. For $50 of savings a month, I can make it without the boob tube.
5 – Re-examine insurance. While health insurance for some is a must have, there are supplementary insurance you might pay that may not have a pressing need at this moment. Talk to your insurance professional to see what costs can be reduced or eliminated.
6 – Kid’s allowance. Don’t let them push you around. Yes, you want to give them the best, but in order to genuinely secure a better future for them, determine what is important to them now and what is important to their future.
7 – Electricity. During the summers and winters, this bill can get mighty large. Call your local utility company and ask them what steps you can take to cut your electricity bill. Switching to CFC bulbs (twirly bulbs) is a good start, but more of your electric bill will come from A/C, heat, hot water, the dryer and that new plasma TV you bought.
8 – Credit Cards. You can’t stop making credit card payments, but at least you can call them to negotiate better rates. Use some of the credit card offers to help negotiate a better rate. $20-$40 or more a month on $10,000 balance
9 – Carpooling/Telecommuting/Bike or Walk to work – All these options can equate to saving a weekly $50 tank of gas, reduce wear and tear, and decrease potential maintenance costs.
10 – Cell versus home phone. Decide which is needed more and eliminate the other. If you can, I would consider eliminating the home phone because there are cheaper options like Skype for home telephone services. And if your phone company won’t give you Internet access without having local phone, give high-speed cable from your cable company a try. For the light computer users, trying going to a free WiFi area or the library, and get connected there.
11 – Ask the boss to go corporate casual or just casual. Wearing casual clothes may not only be more durable and last longer, but you can also skip the pricey dry cleaning bill