I recently put my financial picture out there for the world to see and I just got a paycheck a little while ago that finally had my health benefits subtracted from it. For 80 hours of work, the net pay was $699, but some of that went into my online savings accounts automatically. I’m hoping this next paycheck is for 88 hours of work – that small difference of one additional day’s pay can make a big difference, money-wise, when you are living kind of close to the bone, as they say. And yes, I do plan on doing an updated post on my financial picture, now that I received a paycheck that included my health insurance. So, stay tuned for that!
Addendum to the post below: I just opened a checking and savings account at the local credit union. As long as the account stays open for six months and I have at least something from my paycheck deposited into it, I get $100, and the organization for whom I work gets $75. Win-win situation, if you ask me. I’m going to use it as my “emergency oh shit, I forgot that money was coming out of my account today” account, I think. Or, just pretend it’s not there and let the money pile up. It’s not like my online savings accounts earn that much to write home about, after all.
To some people, these changes or ideas might not seem like a lot. And on a monthly basis alone, maybe they aren’t. But when you take into account what $33 x 12 months equals (the difference in cell phone plans), it can really add up.
- Saving a lot of money at the grocery store with more diligence and some “Saving-up” trips to Walmart. (The closest Walmart is about 70 miles away so you need to plan your trip accordingly.) The last time I was at one, I bought rice, beans, diced tomatoes, coffee, coffee creamer, frozen fruit for smoothies, pasta and pasta sauce, etc. All of these items seemed lower priced than at my local grocery store. While I like my grocery store that is close by for the vegan options that they offer, their prices on some things are out of this world. ($7.99 for strawberries. Insane!) This way, all I have to do is supplement possibly once per week for fresh produce for salads and the like.
- Changing my cell coverage from Verizon back to Cricket Wireless. My no-contract plan option with Verizon is $60 per month plus tax, for a grand total of $63.75. With Cricket, it was $35 total. I can still get 4G coverage in this area with Cricket (it uses AT&T Towers, and from what I understand, just merged with AT&T), and in the places where I’ve not had Verizon coverage, I don’t think you will have any coverage, period. Think: Canyons, etc.
- Using my public library for books. I have now passed the trial 3-month period that they have instituted, so I am no longer limited to taking out only 3 items at one time. (As a former librarian, you know how happy this makes me!!!)I can now take out up to 9, so this past week, I took out a few magazines, and also took advantage of their ILL system. Within three days, I received a requested book, titled How to Manage Your Money When You Don’t Have Any, by Eric Wecks. (After finding the link to it on Amazon, I realize I now have the 1st edition, but that’s ok, it’s from 2012, so still pretty relevant.) While I’ve not learned anything really new yet from this book, I like the author’s style and fact that he is also living pretty close to the bone as well and is candid about things. Like me, he agrees with Dave Ramsey, but only in part. Also, I’ve read tons of self-help financial books, so at this point, it would be pretty amazing to find one which covers topics not covered by ones I’ve read before. I’m always hoping I will find that one nugget of information that I haven’t seen before! 🙂
- Using services like Kindle First, or BookBub or Amazon Prime’s Lending Library for ebooks that I can’t get through my own library. (They use Overdrive with the local library.) Never heard of some of these?Well, Kindle First – you get to choose one out of six books every month through this program. They are books that are Editors Picks, and about to released wildly. I’ve downloaded some but with my schedule the last few months, haven’t been able to read all of them.With BookBub, you can either find ebooks for free, or very low cost (most seem to be about .99 so far.). You get an email every day letting you know of some of their bargains for that day. Both of these programs are free of charge.With Amazon Prime, you can usually download one book for free per month with your membership. You also get access to their Lending Library – you can basically borrow an Kindle copy of a book from another Amazon Prime member and if you so choose, you can offer the same in kind to other Amazon members.
- Using the heck out of my annual National Park pass. With Zion being a close drive away, and Lake Powell being not much further (albeit in a different direction), I plan on using it as much as I can. It is the tool to my escape to beautiful places that not many people will get to see in their lifetimes. The annual pass costs $80, but one trip to one park alone can cost up to $30, so I’ve gotten my money out of it several times over, so far, and it’s only November! (I bought it on June 30th.)
I’m also spending more time writing. And spending time in the sun when it is warmer out. I know I need that to get through the winter without becoming a total recluse.
I know these are not huge money savers that I have mentioned above, but every little bit helps. What are some ways you try to save money? Please drop a line below and let us all know!
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