Every week I balance my checkbook, check my accounts online, and put change in my piggy bank. I then try to think back about what I purchased that week that cost so much money.  Most people do not think about the small change and under five dollar purchases they make almost every day…but this can really add up.  It is only June but I have decided to make some financial resolutions to cut costs, save money, and put more dollars in the bank.

Here are two immediate strategies that can be used to cut costs.

Using Coupons at the store (not only the grocery store):

Everyone is aware that food markets of all types accept coupons.  There are many retail stores that do as well including department stores, hardware stores and home furnishing stores to name a few.  Sometimes you can use more than one coupon at a time and expired ones too.  A perfect example is Bed Bath & Beyond; you can use as many 20% off coupons as you have products and they never expire.  Yes they have a date on them but the store always accepts them.  Unfortunately they only let you use one of the $5 off coupons.  There are some other stores that may say you cannot use multiple coupons but I always ask them to try anyway.  You would be surprised how many registers are able to process them.

I do a lot of clothes shopping at Macy’s but most of the time you have to use your Macy’s card to make the purchase.  I definitely do not want to add anything else to my credit cards but if it is a really expensive purchase, you can always make a payment to the card immediately after purchasing the product.  Sometimes there are coupons that can be used with any payment.  Kohl’s for example gives you Kohl’s cash and you do not need a Kohl’s card to use it.  Also, if the coupon expires, it never hurts to present it anyway.  Most of the time no one looks at the date and the system accepts it anyway. 

Stop Going Out to Lunch:

I go out to lunch with co-workers almost every day and it is expensive.  A sandwich and drink from most places around can be anywhere from $7-$12 if you are lucky, and I am not referring to fast food places like McDonalds.  For this amount I can buy some lunch meat, bread, fixings, salad, chips, drinks, and other tid bits and have enough food for two weeks.  I am not saying I will never go out but let’s be honest; I never just eat out either.  There is always a run to the mall or store and picking up something I really don’t need coupons or not.  Having food in the office allows me to enjoy my break without having to rush, catch up with some gossip, and save some money for more important purchases. 

You would be amazed with how much money you have after a month of not going out.  Based on my calculations it is over $2,000 per year.  If I really make an effort and use my couponse I can save an additional $3,000 on clothes.  WOW!  Now I can take that European vacation I have been planning for the past 3 years.
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Leigh Merz

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  1. Very good...a personal touch and personal point of view which usually connects to real people...