Times are hard for everyone nowadays. The economy is not doing well and people are struggling, my family and I included. My husband was a Coal Miner and when his mines shut down, he was forced to find another job. With the new job, that meant less hours and lower pay. But we manage and we don't go hungry. God is good and he always provides for his children. This is how we deal with a budget reduction...
1) First and foremost, I pray about everything and give God the praise. Things could always be worse, so I am thankful for what we have. I know that all of our blessings come from God and he always provides. Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning. James 1:17
2) My husband and I traded in our newer model vehicle to an older model vehicle. This saved us about $5,000 on what we owe. We now have a lower interest rate and a lower monthly payment which has been a tremendous help.
3) We don't go grocery shopping until we have used up what we have. Now of course we run to the store for milk, bread and a few other necessities, but I cook with what we have. This is a good way to get creative with your meals as well, so that you don't get tired of eating the same things.
4) Make things to sell- I love to bake and decorate cakes, cupcakes and cookies. I have been blessed to have some recent orders and I am so thankful for my loyal customers. Like I said, God is good and he always provides. On occasion, I make deco mesh wreaths to sell, but I'm not the craftiest person around.
5) Sell things that you don't use - Everyone has things laying around that they no longer use, so why not sell them and get paid for them. Clothes, purses, books and etc. I have sold on ebay, Poshmark and Thredup. My husband also sells car parts and etc that he no longer has a use for.
6) Save money any way that we can- I sometimes use coupons, but not all of the time. A lot of times I just plain forget to use them. I wish I could remember to use them more often. If we make online purchases, we use Ebates which gives you cash back on some of your orders. I also like to use Walmart Savings Catcher. With Walmart Savings Catcher, you scan your receipts and they compare the prices to other stores. If a lower price is found, you get the difference.
7) Make simple changes- I love my coffee and enjoy using my Keurig, but k-cups for the Keurig can get really expensive. So I stopped buying k-cups and started buying coffee in bags or cans. You can get more bang for your buck this way. I just fill my reusable k-cups up with coffee and enjoy. My husband and I love to go out to movies but the late movies are pricey, so we switched to watching matinee movies when we can get a babysitter. Matinee movies always save a few dollars. We also don't eat out as much and cook more at home. We have also been having family game nights with friends and their children as opposed to going out and spending money.
8) Bargain shop - I like to price match groceries, and shop where the best deals are. I also love to shop at the Dollar Tree. There are so many things that you should always buy at the Dollar Tree instead of other places. I love to wear make-up but I don't like the price tag that comes along with it. I have a post here on some of my Makeup Favorites Under $20. Beauty products don't have to be expensive. You can look great with budget friendly makeup without your wallet having to suffer. You just have to search for the best deals. Poshmark and Thredup have really great deals on new and used clothes too
9) Stay home more often- Now this may seem boring to most, but I can assure you that I very seldom get bored. My two year old son keeps me busy so does homework and housework. There is always something to do! I always try to do fun activities with my son or spend quality time with my husband. I try to make the best of any down time that I have as well. Staying home has saved a lot on gas and fast food. Now that Raylan is potty training, we have saved a lot on diapers and pull-ups. When we are home, we use cloth training pants and that has saved a lot on those expensive pull-ups.
These are just some simple changes that have helped us deal with our budget reduction. We haven't saved a ton of money, but we have saved some. These changes have helped us and God has and is still getting us through the tough times. When there seems to be no way, God always makes a way. God is good!
What are some ways that you like to save money?