Small Moneysavers Which Add Up

Questions on how we spend our money and our time - consumer goods and services, home and vehicle, leisure and recreational activities
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gatorman
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Small Moneysavers Which Add Up

Post by gatorman » Wed Oct 08, 2014 3:35 pm

We are in the process of moving into a new house. We will be subscribing to our local cable tv company's service. We are buying internet access and cable tv, no phone. At checkout online for the cable company, I was asked if I wanted to rent a cable modem, the cost is roughly $7 per month. I looked online and found I could buy a cable modem at one of the big box store's websites for $89, on sale, regularly $99. So, I declined the rental. I printed off the ad, went to the store and found it "on sale" for $94. I showed the checkout clerk the ad and got an immediate further $5 reduction. I had a card for a store credit of $26, had them apply it to the purchase price and walked out with the modem for a little over $60. The point of all this is threefold. I'm saving by not having a land line, saving by not renting a modem and saving by doing a little advance research to see if the online deal is better than the in store deal. If the modem lasts 5 years, the rental cost would have been $420. By buying, I'm saving roughly $331. The phone savings is more problematic, but as I usually don't use my minutes, I'll probably save a bunch there as well. And, doing a little internet research saved me another $5, a small amount, but it only took me a minute or so to look it up. Also, the modem I bought is more highly rated than the modem they wanted to rent to me.

The reason I point all this out is I'm sure most of you have your own ideas which generate small savings which add up to significant amounts over time. If you would be so kind, please post any money saving ideas you'd like to share here so we can all take advantage of those which make sense for us individually.
gatorman

ieee488
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Re: Small Moneysavers Which Add Up

Post by ieee488 » Wed Oct 08, 2014 3:43 pm

two words = basic cable
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bungalow10
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Re: Small Moneysavers Which Add Up

Post by bungalow10 » Wed Oct 08, 2014 3:46 pm

Low flow toilets, faucets, and shower heads.
An elephant for a dime is only a good deal if you need an elephant and have a dime.

leonard
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Re: Small Moneysavers Which Add Up

Post by leonard » Wed Oct 08, 2014 3:49 pm

Don't waste food-leftovers. It's pretty straightforward to learn to dial in the exact amount the family will eat. We used to throw away a lot of leftovers - until I was able to dial in the food amounts - and eat the leftovers.

Haven't calculated it - but over the last 10 years or so I am sure we have saved a lot of money doing this.
Leonard | | Market Timing: Do you seriously think you can predict the future? What else do the voices tell you? | | If employees weren't taking jobs with bad 401k's, bad 401k's wouldn't exist.

Woodshark
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Re: Small Moneysavers Which Add Up

Post by Woodshark » Wed Oct 08, 2014 6:20 pm

I and my wife are avid readers yet we hardly ever buy books. We have an excellent local library system. We can go online and see what best-sellers are coming up and place a reserve on them. When they are available, they send us an email and they are held for 5 days. Plenty of time for us to go by our local branch and check them out. Depending on our spot in the queue, we may have to wait a few days to a few weeks but no matter, we eventually get to read them for free. Well, almost free. Our local taxes do support the library system.

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nisiprius
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Re: Small Moneysavers Which Add Up

Post by nisiprius » Wed Oct 08, 2014 6:34 pm

Woodshark wrote:I and my wife are avid readers yet we hardly ever buy books. We have an excellent local library system. We can go online and see what best-sellers are coming up and place a reserve on them. When they are available, they send us an email and they are held for 5 days. Plenty of time for us to go by our local branch and check them out. Depending on our spot in the queue, we may have to wait a few days to a few weeks but no matter, we eventually get to read them for free. Well, almost free. Our local taxes do support the library system.
Amen. Our library is part of a network, you can access the combined catalog for the whole network over the Internet from home, and if my library doesn't have it I can place an interlibrary loan request. Typically (unless it's a popular new book), it is delivered to our local library within two or three days--not quite Amazon Prime but close--and the library is a nice 1/2 mile walk from my house, so it is motivation to get a little exercise.

When I semiretired, I took amazon.com out of my "favorites" and put in the library network catalog link instead. Saved well over $500 a year.

Honesty compels me to say that now that we have Kindles, although there's a limited selection of Amazon Kindle books that can be "borrowed" at not cost via the library, nevertheless our spending is creeping up again... I really can't resist the $1.99 special deals...
Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure nineteen nineteen and six, result happiness; Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure twenty pounds ought and six, result misery.

anakinskywalker
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Re: Small Moneysavers Which Add Up

Post by anakinskywalker » Wed Oct 08, 2014 7:21 pm

I was paying $38.73 a month on Vonage landline and ISD service. I was also paying $103.04 a month on ATT cellphone service.

I canceled Vonage and moved to Ooma+Google Voice. Now I have landline from Ooma for 3.79 a month, and ISD from Google voice costing less than $5 per month (depends on how many ISD minutes I use to which countries).

I plan to cancel ATT and move to airvoice $10/month prepaid plan as I don't use my cellphone much.

These two changes together saved me $120 per month. That's almost $1.5K a year.

Anakin

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Dutch
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Re: Small Moneysavers Which Add Up

Post by Dutch » Wed Oct 08, 2014 7:28 pm

Save even more by cutting the cable TV

Netflix and projectfreeTV.org works for me

Boglemama
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Re: Small Moneysavers Which Add Up

Post by Boglemama » Wed Oct 08, 2014 7:47 pm

Dutch wrote:Save even more by cutting the cable TV

Netflix and projectfreeTV.org works for me
We cut cable. Just high speed internet at $20 per month promotional (I have to call every 6 months and get it reinstated) and $8 per month for Hulu plus. We also bought our own modem.

Meal planning is also a GREAT savings. I asked a friend how much she spends on groceries and she had no clue. She got back to me and told me $1,200 per month! YIKES! I couldn't contain myself. We spend $500 per month (organic and whole foods when possible) and that's for 4 people to eat 3 meals a day and snacks. (I make extra for dinners and hubby takes it to work for lunch) We do spend $117 on eating out monthly too, so that saves a bit on the groceries.

Every little thing adds up. That money could be in your retirement account instead of someone else's pocket!

bhsince87
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Re: Small Moneysavers Which Add Up

Post by bhsince87 » Wed Oct 08, 2014 7:47 pm

Only change the oil in you vehicles once every 10,000 miles or once per year.

Self insure as much as possible. Move your deductibles to the highest levels allowable.

Coupons. A penny saved is 1.4 pennies earned in my tax bracket. And always do a quick online search for deals before you buy anything online or make a major purchase.

Learn to live at a lower temp in winter, and a higher temp in summer. We do 64 in winter (we wear sweat pants and shirts), and 74 in summer. I've tried 78, but that's too much.....

Dry your clothes on hangers (outside) if possible. A clothes dryer uses huge amounts of energy AND sucks hot or cold air out of the house, and pulls outside air in. Its one of the most inefficient appliances in the house.

Also, see this thread! http://www.bogleheads.org/forum/viewtop ... st=2218485
Retirement: When you reach a point where you have enough. Or when you've had enough.

123
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Re: Small Moneysavers Which Add Up

Post by 123 » Wed Oct 08, 2014 7:52 pm

Benjamin Franklin said "A penny saved is a penny earned". But you all knew that already. Still true a couple hundred years after it was said. It's probably like gravity, it will always work (we hope).
The closest helping hand is at the end of your own arm.

sport
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Re: Small Moneysavers Which Add Up

Post by sport » Wed Oct 08, 2014 8:10 pm

Costco membership. We save the membership fee many times over.
Jeff

CoAndy
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Re: Small Moneysavers Which Add Up

Post by CoAndy » Wed Oct 08, 2014 8:15 pm

leonard wrote:Don't waste food-leftovers. It's pretty straightforward to learn to dial in the exact amount the family will eat. We used to throw away a lot of leftovers - until I was able to dial in the food amounts - and eat the leftovers.

Haven't calculated it - but over the last 10 years or so I am sure we have saved a lot of money doing this.

This. Bringing leftovers for lunch to work the following day has been a HUGE money saver.

autonomy
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Re: Small Moneysavers Which Add Up

Post by autonomy » Wed Oct 08, 2014 8:38 pm

Since two people in this thread mentioned it, can someone explain the leftovers thing to me - are there people who, after cooking, simply throw out the extra food? Or is it that they put it in the fridge, forget it, then it goes bad and they have to throw it out? Food doesn't go bad THAT quickly... it may not taste great, but it's still food.

I love leftovers. I bring them to work for lunch. I sometimes cook 2 big meals (soup, chili, stir fry - though that's easy to make after work, etc.) and eat that 2-3 days in the row for dinner/lunch - 2 pots so that I get to mix things up. Saves on cooking time too. Which goes to say that if you allocate $10/day for lunch, I save $50/week, $2250/year by not buying lunch (assuming 45 workweeks - and sometimes I do indulge).

Others:
-Netflix instead of cable
-Only 1 smartphone data plan between wife & self (would be $20/mo extra for the mobile data plan)
-Buy wine & booze for mixed drinks at Trader Joe's (they have some good low-cost selections, their $15 bourbon is superb in cocktails but doesn't stand on its own)
-Try not to buy too many drinks when going out for dinner - they're expensive

BigPug
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Re: Small Moneysavers Which Add Up

Post by BigPug » Wed Oct 08, 2014 11:06 pm

leonard wrote:Don't waste food-leftovers. It's pretty straightforward to learn to dial in the exact amount the family will eat. We used to throw away a lot of leftovers - until I was able to dial in the food amounts - and eat the leftovers.

Haven't calculated it - but over the last 10 years or so I am sure we have saved a lot of money doing this.
+1

Same here. Buying a food dehydrator changed things quite a bit for me, too. I used to throw food out if it was starting to go bad, but now I just dehydrate it. A lot of dehydrated foods make great meals for camping or backpacking.

Raladic
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Re: Small Moneysavers Which Add Up

Post by Raladic » Wed Oct 08, 2014 11:44 pm

bungalow10 wrote:Low flow toilets, faucets, and shower heads.
I don't know how much you pay for water used, but we pay $6 for 2 people for 2 months for the actual amount used (the rest is flat standing charge), so if I optimize our showers I might save maybe $5 per YEAR so it will be years before a new faucet is paid off...

Mingus
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Re: Small Moneysavers Which Add Up

Post by Mingus » Wed Oct 08, 2014 11:51 pm

autonomy wrote:can someone explain the leftovers thing to me - are there people who, after cooking, simply throw out the extra food? Or is it that they put it in the fridge, forget it, then it goes bad and they have to throw it out?
Yes, some people just have a natural aversion to leftovers. Maybe its genetic.. Maybe its behavioral. It could be the smell is off, the taste or texture is off. Who knows. What we do know is that bacteria never rests. So maybe that extra 12 hours of bacterial magic in the fridge changes the characteristics of the food just enough for a certain segment of the population to not want to eat leftovers. Its probably an amplified survival trait some people have to not eat tainted or bad food.

My neighbor often has food, like steaks they didn't eat up all that night, they are just going to throw away. So occasionally I'll get a free steak or burger.

Me? I prefer leftovers to most fresh made food. I think they taste better. Within three days.

IPer
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Re: Small Moneysavers Which Add Up

Post by IPer » Wed Oct 08, 2014 11:55 pm

Cable off - three months ago, have not missed it probably never will!
Phone service - was not using regularly, just cell, turned off a month ago, no problems. Now using cell phone and a Skype number which forwards to my
cell phone if I don't answer it on Skype.
I always buy the cell phone outright and pay prepaid for the minutes, however, this might not be the best option for many folk.
I eat out infrequently, it saves up front and I believe on doctors bills in the long run!
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Ron Ronnerson
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Re: Small Moneysavers Which Add Up

Post by Ron Ronnerson » Thu Oct 09, 2014 12:27 am

I buy sunglasses from the Dollar Store. This came to mind because I misplaced a pair just today. Hopefully it will turn up. If not, then I guess I'm out of a buck.

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Hexdump
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Re: Small Moneysavers Which Add Up

Post by Hexdump » Thu Oct 09, 2014 6:41 am

Dutch wrote:Save even more by cutting the cable TV

Netflix and projectfreeTV.org works for me
Hear hear on cutting the cable TV. Go OTA (Off The Air).

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Hexdump
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Re: Small Moneysavers Which Add Up

Post by Hexdump » Thu Oct 09, 2014 6:46 am

I subscribe to Bookbub.com and get a daily offer of about 10 Kindle books.
Usually 1/2 of them are no charge.

http://landers.bookbub.com/bestsellers-covers-2-m/?

skylar
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Re: Small Moneysavers Which Add Up

Post by skylar » Thu Oct 09, 2014 7:22 am

1. No cable TV, Netflix, Amazon Prime, etc. - we borrow DVDs from the library, or watch things online. If we can't do either, it's not worth watching.

2. Share an Internet connection with a neighbor. With modern wifi technology, this is easy to do. It does mean we have a small dead spot, which I filled in with an old Linksys access point, and about 30 minutes of work with DD-WRT's repeater bridge setup.

3. No smart phones - still can't figure out the point of them aside from making someone else tons of money.

4. Pack a lunch everyday for work - I hardly ever go out to eat.

IPer
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Re: Small Moneysavers Which Add Up

Post by IPer » Thu Oct 09, 2014 7:30 am

skylar wrote:1. No cable TV, Netflix, Amazon Prime, etc. - we borrow DVDs from the library, or watch things online. If we can't do either, it's not worth watching.

2. Share an Internet connection with a neighbor. With modern wifi technology, this is easy to do. It does mean we have a small dead spot, which I filled in with an old Linksys access point, and about 30 minutes of work with DD-WRT's repeater bridge setup.

3. No smart phones - still can't figure out the point of them aside from making someone else tons of money.

4. Pack a lunch everyday for work - I hardly ever go out to eat.
With 1-4 you are saving more then I pay for rent!
Read the Wiki Wiki !

nordlead
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Re: Small Moneysavers Which Add Up

Post by nordlead » Thu Oct 09, 2014 7:36 am

Raladic wrote:
bungalow10 wrote:Low flow toilets, faucets, and shower heads.
I don't know how much you pay for water used, but we pay $6 for 2 people for 2 months for the actual amount used (the rest is flat standing charge), so if I optimize our showers I might save maybe $5 per YEAR so it will be years before a new faucet is paid off...
It is amazing how much the water bill can differ even across town.

I pay a flat $2.xx per 1k gallons of water regardless of when or how much I use. It used to be a flat rate for the first 10k gallons and then a small increase for every 1k gallons. My parents who live in the same town, but 5 miles over get water from a different source so they pay a different rate depending on the time of day. I pay ~$50-70 for 3 months (and we have 3 adults and 3 kids in the house and when we hit $70 it is typically cause I filled the pool), and I know they pay over $100 for the same timeframe (just 2 adults).

I know in California they were paying upwards of $6 per 1k gallons.

FullYellowJacket
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Re: Small Moneysavers Which Add Up

Post by FullYellowJacket » Thu Oct 09, 2014 7:50 am

I want to add to the people that have mentioned cutting the cable. I think they are forgetting the biggest money saver from this:

Get ads/commercials out of your life! There are a lot of people that say, "ads don't work on me," or some other variation. Guess what? Companies don't spend multi-billions a year on advertising for nothing. Psychologically, even the most steel-willed people will succumb to the occasional purchase due to advertising. This is well studied behavioral science.

So here are the ways to get ads out of your life:

No cable!
No online streaming services with advertising (hulu plus, youtube content, non-premium spotify or pandora)! This can be remedied with anti-advertising software such as ad-block plus.
No professional sports! This was the biggest one for me. Even going to games, it is easy to underestimate the amount of ads being thrown your way.
No subsidized kindles*! Don't be cheap, spend a little extra on the non ad supported model in order to save money in the long run.

I'm probably forgetting a few things, but seriously take back your mind. Don't let advertising in.

Go on hikes!
Go to museums!
Have deep discussions with your loved ones over a cup of tea or coffee (or beer/wine/liquor if it's the weekend :beer )
Read Bogleheads.org :happy

Now if only there was a technology to block billboards.

*Edit: Don'y buy books from amazon. Between your local library system's e-book collection for new books and the public domain/http://www.gutenberg.org/ for the classics, you should never run out of things to read.

nordlead
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Re: Small Moneysavers Which Add Up

Post by nordlead » Thu Oct 09, 2014 8:11 am

skylar wrote:2. Share an Internet connection with a neighbor. With modern wifi technology, this is easy to do. It does mean we have a small dead spot, which I filled in with an old Linksys access point, and about 30 minutes of work with DD-WRT's repeater bridge setup.

3. No smart phones - still can't figure out the point of them aside from making someone else tons of money.
2. is probably against the ToS. It is also unsafe for at least the person who doesn't have the direct connection as they must feed all of their information through the neighbors network. And unless you are paying for a VPN a significant amount of your personal information is going to be exposed, but VPNs are typically slow (if cheap) or expensive (if fast). Even if your neighbor isn't the crook, he could be a backdoor into your network.

Let's just say I wouldn't do this with any of my neighbors unless they were the ones paying me and then I'd set them up so my network was invisible to them. Even then, I'd be hesitant to save $17/month, as I wouldn't want to deal with their network issues when they pop up.

3. They don't have to be expensive. Right now, I pay ~$11/month for my cell phone, but from what I've learned I can drive that down to ~$5/month or less (but then my wife's costs would rise so it is hardly worth it unless we switched phones for her). The hardware cost can be as little as $30 for a cheap used phone, or $350 for one of the best phones available, a new Nexus 5. Honestly, I feel that if you are going to complain about smartphone costs, you should have no cell phone at all other than a disabled one (since they can call 911).

My cell phone (2 smart phones), house phone, Internet, and TV/Movie entertainment budget comes to $65/month total. If I go back a few years, that is what I used to pay just for two dumb phones.

ieee488
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Re: Small Moneysavers Which Add Up

Post by ieee488 » Thu Oct 09, 2014 8:18 am

FullYellowJacket wrote:I
No subsidized kindles*! Don't be cheap, spend a little extra on the non ad supported model in order to save money in the long run.
Are you talking about the app or the e-reader itself?
I wasn't aware of this.
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ieee488
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Re: Small Moneysavers Which Add Up

Post by ieee488 » Thu Oct 09, 2014 8:21 am

skylar wrote:we borrow DVDs from the library
I would rather pay the $5.34 for the two DVD rentals from Netflix.
I'd probably spend about gallon of gas to get to/from the library.
And lthe library DVD rental period is only 1 week.
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jlawrence01
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Re: Small Moneysavers Which Add Up

Post by jlawrence01 » Thu Oct 09, 2014 8:23 am

Here are a few things:

1) Shop at the dollar store first. It is surprising what you can find.
2) I BUY lots of books - at the library. All are priced under $1 and when they AR done, I contribute them back.
3) Public transportation - $1.50 for a 35 mile bus ride into town.
4) Volunteering is free and you always get benefits.
5) Membership at a museum/garden. I joined the Morton Arboretum in Chicago and visited only twice .... However, I visited SIX other gardens free throughout the year,
6) National park passes and the like.
7) Many county fairs include entertainment with admission. I paid $6 for admission to a Wisconsin county fair and saw the Bellamy Brothers AND Ronnie Millsap. Priced separately, the cost would have been $80.
8) Evaluate your habits. How much do you spend on coffee, beverages, etc.
9) Cook at home.
10) Why have WiFi at home, when so many places have it for free? - public libraries, etc.

FullYellowJacket
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Re: Small Moneysavers Which Add Up

Post by FullYellowJacket » Thu Oct 09, 2014 8:55 am

ieee488 wrote:
FullYellowJacket wrote:I
No subsidized kindles*! Don't be cheap, spend a little extra on the non ad supported model in order to save money in the long run.
Are you talking about the app or the e-reader itself?
I wasn't aware of this.
Most of the new physical kindle e-reader options have an ad subsidized and full price option.

bungalow10
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Re: Small Moneysavers Which Add Up

Post by bungalow10 » Thu Oct 09, 2014 9:06 am

Raladic wrote:
bungalow10 wrote:Low flow toilets, faucets, and shower heads.
I don't know how much you pay for water used, but we pay $6 for 2 people for 2 months for the actual amount used (the rest is flat standing charge), so if I optimize our showers I might save maybe $5 per YEAR so it will be years before a new faucet is paid off...
are you counting your sewer costs in that? Our sewer costs are about 3x our water cost. Our water is $15/month, plus $45/month for sewer. A penny saved on water costs is three pennies saved on sewer costs.

Paying $1.50/person/month is far from the norm when it comes to water costs. Are you subsidized in some way?
An elephant for a dime is only a good deal if you need an elephant and have a dime.

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SC Hoosier
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Re: Small Moneysavers Which Add Up

Post by SC Hoosier » Thu Oct 09, 2014 9:41 am

Ron Ronnerson wrote:I buy sunglasses from the Dollar Store. This came to mind because I misplaced a pair just today. Hopefully it will turn up. If not, then I guess I'm out of a buck.
I buy sunglasses by the lot on ebay. I go through a lot of them so this works best. Usually works out to $2/pair. They aren't always what I would pick, but I can make sure some of them are appealing to me.
I live in No Payment Land. It is wonderful, and I'd love for you to live here too.

sailfish2
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Re: Small Moneysavers Which Add Up

Post by sailfish2 » Thu Oct 09, 2014 10:50 am

Using YNAB on phone/IPad to track expenses deters me from little expenses (i.e. stopping at Starbucks) because I make myself enter them each time, AND also you see how quickly these can add up. Thanks to this forum for introducing me to YNAB!

Shopping for necessities (cleaning supplies, paper towels, batteries, etc) at a store like BigLots deters me from overspending. If I did the same shopping at Target, I would find all kinds of additional stuff to buy. This strategy reduces impulse purchases.

nchunter
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Re: Small Moneysavers Which Add Up

Post by nchunter » Thu Oct 09, 2014 10:54 am

LED Lighbulbs- High Cost upfront, the payback seems to be happening faster then even I thought
Radiant Barrier in the Attic and Insulation- I installed attic foil and more blown in cellulose this summer. Again aside from a more comfortable home, the payback seems to be more aggressive then I calculated initially.

Ybsybs
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Re: Small Moneysavers Which Add Up

Post by Ybsybs » Thu Oct 09, 2014 11:05 am

nchunter wrote:LED Lighbulbs- High Cost upfront, the payback seems to be happening faster then even I thought
Radiant Barrier in the Attic and Insulation- I installed attic foil and more blown in cellulose this summer. Again aside from a more comfortable home, the payback seems to be more aggressive then I calculated initially.
I had a builder tell me that blown in insulation in attic spaces was a mold and moisture problem leading to rotting roof timbers in my area. Have you had any issues like that? Or perhaps do you just live in an area like Las Vegas where the humidity is so low that these problem don't apply?

bungalow10
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Re: Small Moneysavers Which Add Up

Post by bungalow10 » Thu Oct 09, 2014 11:11 am

Ybsybs wrote:
nchunter wrote:LED Lighbulbs- High Cost upfront, the payback seems to be happening faster then even I thought
Radiant Barrier in the Attic and Insulation- I installed attic foil and more blown in cellulose this summer. Again aside from a more comfortable home, the payback seems to be more aggressive then I calculated initially.
I had a builder tell me that blown in insulation in attic spaces was a mold and moisture problem leading to rotting roof timbers in my area. Have you had any issues like that? Or perhaps do you just live in an area like Las Vegas where the humidity is so low that these problem don't apply?
You need adequate insulation in the attic. Check with a reputable insulation company in your area - they should be able to tell you the best way to insulate your space.
An elephant for a dime is only a good deal if you need an elephant and have a dime.

placeholder
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Re: Small Moneysavers Which Add Up

Post by placeholder » Thu Oct 09, 2014 11:17 am

nisiprius wrote:Our library is part of a network, you can access the combined catalog for the whole network over the Internet from home, and if my library doesn't have it I can place an interlibrary loan request.
Same here (you can get a good selection of CDs and DVDs as well) although if they don't have it I sometimes put in purchase requests if it's something I think others would enjoy even though that takes longer to get but the library is very good about obtaining items if available through their purchase network.

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Re: Small Moneysavers Which Add Up

Post by ivyhedge » Thu Oct 09, 2014 12:26 pm

Largest -- > smallest.

No car: I bike and pay nothing for maintenance, insurance, fuel costs (and no pollution!).

No cable: Amazon Prime + OTA.

No cellular telephone: GVoice.

CFLs.

Costco!

Sell "items" that have been unused for more than 6 months (no, I haven't wanted any of them again...).

Prepare at home: almost all lunches and dinners (we love to cook).
Polymath.

MichDad
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Re: Small Moneysavers Which Add Up

Post by MichDad » Thu Oct 09, 2014 1:56 pm

Small but effective: When we went out to eat, I told my daughter that she could order juice or soda to drink. However, if she instead chose plain water (free), I'd give her a dollar. Once that deal was offered, she never ordered juice or soda again. I can't take credit for coming up with that. I read about it many years ago in the Wall Street Journal.

MichDad

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Doom&Gloom
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Re: Small Moneysavers Which Add Up

Post by Doom&Gloom » Thu Oct 09, 2014 3:26 pm

Mingus wrote:Yes, some people just have a natural aversion to leftovers. Maybe its genetic.. Maybe its behavioral. It could be the smell is off, the taste or texture is off. Who knows. What we do know is that bacteria never rests. So maybe that extra 12 hours of bacterial magic in the fridge changes the characteristics of the food just enough for a certain segment of the population to not want to eat leftovers. Its probably an amplified survival trait some people have to not eat tainted or bad food.

My neighbor often has food, like steaks they didn't eat up all that night, they are just going to throw away. So occasionally I'll get a free steak or burger.

Me? I prefer leftovers to most fresh made food. I think they taste better. Within three days.
I am one of those people who abhors leftovers. I am also reading this thread for ideas rather than being able to offer suggestions :(

The only leftovers I will eat are fried chicken, barbecued chicken/ribs/pork sandwiches, steak, red beans and rice, and Brunswick stew. I am naturally (?) a very picky eater and have no idea why these foods are tolerable to me as leftovers but others are not--other than most leftovers are simply not tasty enough to me to eat.

We usually cook red beans and Brunswick stew in quantities designed to produce leftovers as these are a couple of foods that do actually get tastier as they "age." My wife nearly always takes any leftovers that we do not eat (or plan to eat) to her elderly mother who is most appreciative and, like the kid in the old TV commercial, will eat anything.

dolphinsaremammals
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Re: Small Moneysavers Which Add Up

Post by dolphinsaremammals » Thu Oct 09, 2014 3:57 pm

Doom&Gloom wrote:
Mingus wrote:Yes, some people just have a natural aversion to leftovers. Maybe its genetic.. Maybe its behavioral. It could be the smell is off, the taste or texture is off. Who knows. What we do know is that bacteria never rests. So maybe that extra 12 hours of bacterial magic in the fridge changes the characteristics of the food just enough for a certain segment of the population to not want to eat leftovers. Its probably an amplified survival trait some people have to not eat tainted or bad food.

My neighbor often has food, like steaks they didn't eat up all that night, they are just going to throw away. So occasionally I'll get a free steak or burger.

Me? I prefer leftovers to most fresh made food. I think they taste better. Within three days.
I am one of those people who abhors leftovers. I am also reading this thread for ideas rather than being able to offer suggestions :(

The only leftovers I will eat are fried chicken, barbecued chicken/ribs/pork sandwiches, steak, red beans and rice, and Brunswick stew. I am naturally (?) a very picky eater and have no idea why these foods are tolerable to me as leftovers but others are not--other than most leftovers are simply not tasty enough to me to eat.

We usually cook red beans and Brunswick stew in quantities designed to produce leftovers as these are a couple of foods that do actually get tastier as they "age." My wife nearly always takes any leftovers that we do not eat (or plan to eat) to her elderly mother who is most appreciative and, like the kid in the old TV commercial, will eat anything.
Is there something about meat that goes "off" quickly? Being a vegetarian, I don't encounter a problem with leftovers. I either leave something in the frig to eat it in the next meal or so, or pop it into the freezer.

dolphinsaremammals
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Re: Small Moneysavers Which Add Up

Post by dolphinsaremammals » Thu Oct 09, 2014 3:57 pm

ieee488 wrote:two words = basic cable
No cable.

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Re: Small Moneysavers Which Add Up

Post by dolphinsaremammals » Thu Oct 09, 2014 3:59 pm

Raladic wrote:
bungalow10 wrote:Low flow toilets, faucets, and shower heads.
I don't know how much you pay for water used, but we pay $6 for 2 people for 2 months for the actual amount used (the rest is flat standing charge), so if I optimize our showers I might save maybe $5 per YEAR so it will be years before a new faucet is paid off...
In my area water gets scarce, especially in the summer creek levels drop, endangering wildlife. And I live in the East, imagine what it's like in drought areas. So I save all the water I can, no water running during toothbrushing or shampooing, for example, even though my water bill is only like $50 every three months. I can't see wasting water if it means some animal is thirsty.

ieee488
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Re: Small Moneysavers Which Add Up

Post by ieee488 » Thu Oct 09, 2014 4:02 pm

dolphinsaremammals wrote:
ieee488 wrote:two words = basic cable
No cable.
Are you substituting with an OTA antenna?

Or are you substituting with TV via internet?
Dell Optiplex 3020 (Win7 Pro), Dell Precision M6300 (Ubuntu Linux 12.04), Dell Precision M6300 (Win7 Pro), Dell Latitude D531 (Vista)

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Doom&Gloom
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Re: Small Moneysavers Which Add Up

Post by Doom&Gloom » Thu Oct 09, 2014 4:15 pm

dolphinsaremammals wrote:Is there something about meat that goes "off" quickly? Being a vegetarian, I don't encounter a problem with leftovers. I either leave something in the frig to eat it in the next meal or so, or pop it into the freezer.
I really don't know. I don't eat a large amount or variety of vegetables (I know, I know) so we cook vegetables in small quantities and rarely have any left over. Meats and meat dish leftovers seem a little different to me, but maybe those just occur more frequently for me. Some very specific ones (mentioned earlier) I will routinely eat as leftovers and even look forward to having; other meat/meat dishes I will refuse to consider as leftovers even if I really liked the original dish. Weird, eh? I would guess that the latter cases are from previous unpleasant (to me) experiences even though I can not recall any specific instances.

dolphinsaremammals
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Re: Small Moneysavers Which Add Up

Post by dolphinsaremammals » Thu Oct 09, 2014 4:19 pm

ieee488 wrote:
dolphinsaremammals wrote:
ieee488 wrote:two words = basic cable
No cable.
Are you substituting with an OTA antenna?

Or are you substituting with TV via internet?
Originally I was substituting with the Internet and an occasional DVD. Now I rarely watch anything. I probably am missing some things I'd like to see, but as my favorite programs got canceled, nothing else crossed my path.

Leemiller
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Re: Small Moneysavers Which Add Up

Post by Leemiller » Thu Oct 09, 2014 5:07 pm

ivyhedge wrote:Largest -- > smallest.

No car: I bike and pay nothing for maintenance, insurance, fuel costs (and no pollution!).

No cable: Amazon Prime + OTA.

No cellular telephone: GVoice.

CFLs.

Costco!

Sell "items" that have been unused for more than 6 months (no, I haven't wanted any of them again...).

Prepare at home: almost all lunches and dinners (we love to cook).

I wish I had the discipline to sell unused items that often! Any tips?

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Re: Small Moneysavers Which Add Up

Post by Easy Rhino » Thu Oct 09, 2014 5:09 pm

MichDad wrote:Small but effective: When we went out to eat, I told my daughter that she could order juice or soda to drink. However, if she instead chose plain water (free), I'd give her a dollar. Once that deal was offered, she never ordered juice or soda again. I can't take credit for coming up with that. I read about it many years ago in the Wall Street Journal.

MichDad
do you give her a dollar every time, or just that first time?

skylar
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Re: Small Moneysavers Which Add Up

Post by skylar » Thu Oct 09, 2014 6:46 pm

nordlead wrote:
skylar wrote:2. Share an Internet connection with a neighbor. With modern wifi technology, this is easy to do. It does mean we have a small dead spot, which I filled in with an old Linksys access point, and about 30 minutes of work with DD-WRT's repeater bridge setup.

3. No smart phones - still can't figure out the point of them aside from making someone else tons of money.
2. is probably against the ToS. It is also unsafe for at least the person who doesn't have the direct connection as they must feed all of their information through the neighbors network. And unless you are paying for a VPN a significant amount of your personal information is going to be exposed, but VPNs are typically slow (if cheap) or expensive (if fast). Even if your neighbor isn't the crook, he could be a backdoor into your network.


Let's just say I wouldn't do this with any of my neighbors unless they were the ones paying me and then I'd set them up so my network was invisible to them. Even then, I'd be hesitant to save $17/month, as I wouldn't want to deal with their network issues when they pop up.
Not in this case - checked the AUP and there is nothing against sharing, particularly since we are in an apartment building and the address is technically the same. As far as privacy, using SSH or Tor is an acceptable compromise for saving ~$50/mo.
nordlead wrote: 3. They don't have to be expensive. Right now, I pay ~$11/month for my cell phone, but from what I've learned I can drive that down to ~$5/month or less (but then my wife's costs would rise so it is hardly worth it unless we switched phones for her). The hardware cost can be as little as $30 for a cheap used phone, or $350 for one of the best phones available, a new Nexus 5. Honestly, I feel that if you are going to complain about smartphone costs, you should have no cell phone at all other than a disabled one (since they can call 911).

My cell phone (2 smart phones), house phone, Internet, and TV/Movie entertainment budget comes to $65/month total. If I go back a few years, that is what I used to pay just for two dumb phones.
That's intriguing, though spending hours agonizing over phones and plans is not how I'd like to spend my time.

skylar
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Re: Small Moneysavers Which Add Up

Post by skylar » Thu Oct 09, 2014 6:47 pm

ieee488 wrote:
skylar wrote:we borrow DVDs from the library
I would rather pay the $5.34 for the two DVD rentals from Netflix.
I'd probably spend about gallon of gas to get to/from the library.
And lthe library DVD rental period is only 1 week.
For us, we're within walking distance of two library branches, and the library lets us keep DVDs for two weeks. I also learned a trick - it's possible to place an item on hold (but suspended) that I still have checked out. This lets me start watching something, knowing I'm not going to finish it, but still start percolating to the top of the next hold queue ASAP.

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