I recently had a client ask if I had any “how to save” advice to help her adjust to her new lifestyle of taking control of her money and where it goes. The best advice I could offer was “Don’t pay full price for anything…ever”. I’ll let grocery items be the exception to this rule for now. My philosophy is if “stuff” isn’t on sale, I don’t need it. And just because it’s on sale doesn’t mean I need it either. I use to fall under the “it’s such a great deal, I just have to have it” mentality. And then I realized I had a closet full of clothes I didn’t like, but boy could I tell you about the deal I got!
Our other house rule that helped curb the “great deal buying” is the 1-for-1 rule. When we bring something new into the house, something must be taken out. Buy a new shirt, an old shirt gets donated to goodwill. Buy new furniture, old furniture gets sold on Craigslist. New toys for birthdays, outgrown toys get passed on to a younger neighbor. I find it helps us keep the clutter minimized (remember your home is a reflection of your finances) and it also makes us more conscious of our spending.
Sure, I impulse shop, but I try to be sure to check the Internet for coupons before I head out. I’ve also yet to find a retailer refuse to scan a coupon off my smart phone, so if you have one, use it to your shopping advantage!
These aren’t new ideas or concepts, just ones I’ve found that help keep our spending in check. What stuff do you think is worth paying full price for? Any advice for the rest of us about how to save a few dollars?
(photo by the justified sinner)