1.12.2013

The Budget Diet: Cutting Costs

I hope that being two weeks into the new year you have figured out a new over hauled budget, your goal for the new year (pay off debt, save up money, ect), and have implemented it into your everyday life. So, I bet when you got down to the part of the budget that included extra spending and eating out, there wasn't a lot of money left. I want to talk a little about "finding" was to have a little more money for this part of the budget or CUTTING COSTS.

To Cut Costs, you need to get familiar with the companies that supply your bills or competitors for that matter. Here are some typical and easy ways to save or cut costs on your everyday utility expenses.

Down grade your cable or dish services- What?! I said it. Take a hard look at how much you pay for those extra sports, movies, and DIY channels. Then Multiply that by 12. On a minimum you would be saving 240.00 a year, most likely more. You could go to a real live game for two, twice on that, or actually pay for a DIY project. We have lived on basic cable for 9 years. The first year we didn't even have Cable! Now a days you could even use Netflixs and Hulu plus, instead of paying the hefty Cable bill.

Keep your house at a nice temperature- You can save 15-25% off your electric bill in the winter months if you keep your thermostat at 68 degrees and in the summer 75 degrees. Also, dressing for the weather and using a warm blanket helps. To cut the electric bill more, only wash a full load of laundry and in the summer dry your clothes on a clothes line! Check out this info on 100 ways to lower your electric bill.

Give up the land line- Most people have already done this and those who haven't probably just feel too attached to it. I will say I have lived fine without a land line for over 7 years. It also saves you around 30.00 a month or a grand total of 360.00 a year.

Avoid Late fee's- With your new budget all of your bills should be payed on time, so this should not
be a problem. But, if your are notorious for paying bills a day late STOP! You are literally throwing money down the drain. Most companies are charging 10-25% of the total bill and credit card companies charge a flat rate anywhere from 25-35.00! So just Pay those bills on time. If you have a hard time meeting a due date, call the company and ask for the due date to be moved to better suit you. As long as it is in the same billing period they are more then happy to help!

While these may seem like no brainers it is surprising how we take 15.00 here and 25.00 there for granted. Saving 10.00 on your electric bill, 30.00 on your phone, 20.00 on cable, and say 25.00 on late payments gives you 85.00 extra dollars each month to add for extra spending or maybe your just save it!

How do you cut costs? I would love to hear your brilliant ideas!