Everyone likes to save a little money, but no one wants to give up the conveniences and luxuries they enjoy! Read on to discover five relatively painless ways to save a little without giving up a thing!
Particularly if you live near a city, shopping at yard or garage sales is perhaps the best way one can have "the most for the least". If you're not a yard sale aficionado, banish your mental image of bags and boxes of someone else's worn out clothes. Yes, those sales exist, but they are not the ones I recommend. Watch for the signs late in the week in the wealthier areas in your community and prepare to be amazed! In recent weeks, I have purchased a $700.00 elliptical machine for $150.00, a $99.00, brand new dog bed for $2.00, and a beautiful, custom made cherry entertainment center for $15.00.
A year ago, I purchased a Magic Jack http://www.magicjack.com/, which is a small device that plugs into your computer and gives you "free" phone service for $20.00 a year. (The cost of the first year is included with the device.) I had to download a small program (free)which gave the Magic Jack priority over all other computer processes, after which I have experienced nothing but perfect, crystal clear calls. For $60.00, I purchased an additional five years of service, which includes long distance in the United States and Canada, directory assistance, call waiting, voice mail, three way calling and caller ID. This deal is hard to beat.
Why pay big bucks to watch TV when you can simply connect your computer to the television by means of an inexpensive cable and watch directly from the TV station's website? Depending on the network, you may have to wait anywhere from one day to one week from the show's original broadcast date, but hey ... look what a little delayed gratification gets you! No cable bill! There are also many places online, such as www.hulu.com, where you can go and watch years and years worth of older shows at will. A side benefit of watching online is a great reduction in the number of commercials ... many shows have none at all.
If you need newspapers for your puppy to piddle on, they are available for the asking at recycling centers. Otherwise, they offer you nothing that you can't get online ... all the same news is available over the Internet. Tne newspapers have websites as well, and many make available their top stories, and most if not all make available the obituaries and classifieds whether you're a subscriber, or not.
I love the warm glow of incandescent lighting, but not its representation in my electric bill. For every "high traffic" incandescent bulb I have replaced with a florescent, I've noticed a corresponding drop of about $15.00 in my monthly electric bill. Manufacturers are sensitive to consumer's attraction to "warm" lighting, and many of today's fluorescents are "coated" to mimic the color temperature of our old fashioned bulbs. Look for the temperature labeling on the package!
Other lesser known tips to save money include filtering "bottom shelf" alcohols through a drinking water filter, thereby producing "top shelf" results, buying in bulk, (even if yours is a small family, properly stored sugar, flour, etc. lasts forever and can save a bundle), purchase cleaners in concentrate at warehouse stores and dilute, and, if you've the time to do it, cook from scratch.
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