How to Save Money on Things You Need

Saving money on necessities in your life is harder than saving on extravagances. However, there still are many ways to save on things you need.

save money by cutting grassOne way to save money is to use comparison websites to get the lowest price on things like insurance and mortgages. You can use a comparison site, to do a property insurance comparison, for example, to see if you can find a lower rate. In addition to a property insurance comparison, you can also compare what you are paying for auto insurance, life insurance and even health insurance if you have an individual policy instead of a group one.

You can also use price comparison websites to save on a whole host of other necessities. For example, you can search for low mortgage rates so you can refinance and save hundreds or thousands of dollars a year on finance charges. Another necessity you can compare on price comparison sites is your Internet and phone service.

If your price comparisons show you already have low rates, another way you might be able to save money on necessities is bundling. Many telecommunications companies offer discounts if you get multiple services, such as Internet and phone. Insurance companies also give discounts for bundling multiple policies together, sometimes up to 25 percent.

When it comes to food and clothing, you can often save lots of money just by avoiding brand names, which can be rather expensive. For food, buy the store brand instead of the name brand. When it comes to clothing, buy an off brand rather than the designer brand. With most clothing, with the possible exception of jeans and shoes, it's impossible to know what brand you are wearing without looking at the tag. If you are absolutely wedded to designer fashions, shop secondhand and consignment stores to get big discounts.

Other ways to save money on food are to use coupons and buy in bulk when things are on sale. Stock your pantry with foods that don't spoil, and if you have a freezer, you can buy huge amounts of meat, vegetables and other perishable goods when they go on sale.

Learning to do home maintenance tasks on your own is one way to think on things you might not think of.

For example, if you do your own yard work, including putting on your own fertilizer and insect treatments, you can save hundreds of dollars. If you want to really grow your green thumb, you can grow vegetables in your garden and help save even more at the grocery store.

Another way to save money is by doing your own home maintenance is cleaning your own gutters and downspouts.

For essential services that you can't do on your own, such as plumbing and electrical, see if you can barter. If your neighbor is a plumber, for instance, offer to babysit or pet-sit in exchange for free plumbing services. Offer to mow your neighbor, the auto mechanic's, lawn in exchange for free oil changes.

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What is your favorite way to  save money?

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10 Responses to How to Save Money on Things You Need

  1. Miss T @ Prairie Eco-Thrifter 02/13/2012 at 8:13 am #

    For one time jobs, we try to borrow whatever equipment we need from family or friends. It is silly to buy something you aren’t going to use very often.

  2. Marissa @ Thirty Six Months 02/11/2012 at 5:30 pm #

    I love bartering and have gone as far as asking for discounts at actual retails stores. Most places are open to a 10-15% discount if you catch the right person.

  3. Melissa@PersonalFinanceJourney 02/11/2012 at 8:28 am #

    Thanks for mentioning the bartering option. That is one of my favorite ways to save!

  4. Shilpan 02/10/2012 at 11:48 pm #

    I think Costco membership is the best way to save. I like their quality merchandise and excellent customer service.

  5. UltimateSmartMoney 02/10/2012 at 7:18 pm #

    My favorite way to save money is when you’re car break down in the middle of the road and I call AAA.

  6. Paul 02/10/2012 at 3:53 pm #

    Groupon and AAA are some discount services that I have used to save money. Most coupon and discount sites now have apps for smartphones so it is easy to find discounts when you are on the road.

  7. Paul 02/10/2012 at 3:50 pm #

    If you can get over the fear factor you would be surprised what you can do around the home. I remodeled our master bath by myself, it took a lot longer than hiring a contractor but the quality is better and we saved a ton of money!

  8. Hack @ Smart Money Hacks 02/10/2012 at 8:25 am #

    We try to save money by looking for student discounts and coupons. Car insurance, movie tickets, groceries, you name it – you can almost always find some sort of discount for anything.

  9. Jai Catalano 02/10/2012 at 8:15 am #

    I spent $180 on my closet when a contractor came in to put up shelving. I saw what he did and said I can do that… Next closet is on me… 🙂


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