Lifestyle

5 DIY Money-Saving Tips You Can Do Right Now

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*This is a collaborative post*

 

By a show of hands, who wants to cut down on their expenses and save money? Although there is no way to tell definitively, the answer is without a doubt one-hundred percent of people. There isn’t a person on the planet, rich or poor, that doesn’t value cutting costs. How do you think billionaires make their money?

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The pros are obvious. Sticking to a budget means there is more cash to go around. So, not only can you afford nice things such as a family vacation, but you can avoid the stress and the hassle of being in debt. One of the worst parts of hitting the red is the unpredictability. And, let’s not forget about the extra savings in your account. There is no way to tell when a rainy day will hit and you’ll need a bit of padding.

Two things tend to get in the way, though. First, people don’t act quickly enough and won’t change their ways. Second, they think they can’t do it alone and hire “experts” to help. The following tips will show you how to change your lifestyle right now without outside assistance. If you’re ready, let’s go.

 

The Nameless Brands

Some things are well worth the price on the tag. A luxury car is expensive, but it has gadgets and gizmos other manufacturers don’t install on their vehicles. Then, there is the build quality to think of too. The odds are high that a Porsche will last for years without degrading. The thing is most items families buy aren’t worth the money. You’re paying for the logo and nothing else.

Think about beauty products for a moment. Almost everyone, men and women, is drawn to fancy packaging and a company with which they are familiar. Of course, the price is a dollar or two higher but it’s worth it. Actually, it isn’t because own brand cosmetics are about as superior as the likes of Axe or Maybelline. And, the average retail cost is less.

The same logic applies to food and groceries. There will always be stuff which you buy for quality reasons, yet there are a lot of items that don’t fall into the category. Simply go with the nameless branded option instead.

 

The Dollar Store Conundrum

Judging by the name, a dollar store is a perfect place to put the above into practice. Everything is cheap and well worth giving a go even if it doesn’t work out well in the end. At least, this is the logic shoppers use because all they have to lose are a couple of bucks. It’s nothing! But, if you do this two to three times a week, then the money adds up to a significant amount.

Probably the biggest mistake will be in the dollar store. What consumers do is pay 100 cents for a product which is worth half or a quarter of the value. That’s how these establishments turn a profit. The solution is simple: figure out the amount before heading to the checkout. By doing this, you can maximize your savings.

Unless you’re a Maven or used to work in the retail industry, you won’t know where to start. So, use this fantastic post by lifehacker.com to get to grips with the basics. Follow the link and you’ll find the best and worst buys at any dollar store.

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Stockpile Sales

At certain times of the year, supermarkets will cut the cost of products to encourage people to spend. Typically, the items are not worth it yet shoppers jump on the bandwagon regardless. You see a sale and can’t help but think it’s value for money. On very rare occasions, the essentials plummet and that’s when you need to strike.

See, you’ll always need things such as toilet paper, moisturizers and bottled water. Regardless of the situation, it will come back into use, so it’s wise to build up your reserves. Plus, buying these products one transaction at a time is costly as it goes against the bulk-buying rule.

Therefore, it’s important to keep an eye out for the sales with a difference and to spend money. A great tip at this time of the year is to buy things that are out of season. Then, come autumn and winter, you’ll have plenty to go around and no need to pay a premium price.

 

Be Confident

 

It’s not difficult to be confident with the above. All you need to do is apply common sense and participate in a bit of light reading. The knowledge is easier to acquire because it’s not tricky in the first place. Tax is an entirely different beast. It’s complicated and the consequences – fine, jail sentence – are severe. Why not hire an accountant that can avoid these pitfalls?

The answer is that tax is perceived to be tough when it isn’t. Isvivid.com has a variety of tips and tricks which you make you self-sufficient in no time. And, there is no need to pay for the info like you have to when you hire a professional bookkeeper. Anyway, the IRS does have a certain level of leeway for errors and mistakes.

 

As long as there are receipts and records to back up your claims, then everything will be fine. The average tax refund is $3,000 – do you want a chunk to go to an accountant?

thrift clothes

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Buy Used

In a consumerist society, nearly everyone is obsessed with having the latest technology. Don’t worry that an iPhone X is $1,000 because it looks cool and cements your position in society. The problem with brand new goods is the price. Used stuff isn’t as shiny, but it is cheap and can be quality if you know where to look.

On cracked.com there is info on how to avoid getting screwed when buying things online. Take these basic tips and apply them to second-hand purchases and there should be nothing to worry about in the long-term. All you have to do is be watchful and ask for accreditation.

Doesn’t that sound pretty straightforward when you think about it objectively?

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