Life seems to be getting more and more expensive. So, whenever I get the chance to save some money, I take advantage of it! Here are a few different ways to save money. We call these "FoolProof's Top 5 Funky Saving Tips":

In addition to our top 5, you can also try the additional suggestions below.
  • Re-use: Did you know that old newspaper works great for cleaning your windows? Recycling newspaper for this purpose means that you're buying paper towels less frequently, and hence, you're saving money. Additionally, try drying your paper towel after soaking up (clean) liquids, such as water, and use it again. Recycling saves money and resources!

  • Make a double batch: Pick a favorite recipe or two. Next time you whip it up, make a double batch and freeze a serving. That way, when you don't feel like cooking, you can thaw it and make the second batch, as opposed to going out to eat or getting takeout. Doubling the ingredients might cost a little extra in the beginning, but it's much less than the cost of dining out.

  • Make your own salad dressing: Making your own salad dressing is relatively inexpensive. You basically throw a couple of ingredients together, give it a shake, and BOOM, you've got your own salad topping. Plus you can control the batch size, and you can make it exactly the way you like.

  • Make your own cleaning supplies: Look this up! It's not as hard as you'd think; it's actually super easy. For instance, baking soda has a ton of cleaning properties. And white vinegar is a great cleaning product, too. Really, just combine white vinegar and water in a spray bottle and you're good to go to clean around the house. You'll find that you can save a few bucks on each grocery run this way.

  • Cut down on water consumption. Does the water need to be running while you brush your teeth or do the dishes? Probably not. Water costs money, and saving water means saving money. While we're on the subject, consider using less light energy, too. If you're not in a certain room, then you probably don't need to leave the lights on in it!

Give these funky tips a try! Not only will they give you a feel-good factor, but you will also be more resourceful and you will save money as well! In addition to our top 5, you can also try the additional suggestions below. They may not be as funky, but you'll appreciate the savings!

Additional Suggestions

Pay yourself first! As soon as you get any money, whether it's your paycheck, allowance, or some other income, pay yourself first by putting money in your savings account.

Drop change into a jar. Hold onto all of your spare change, whether it is a pocketful of mixed coins or even just a penny. You'll be surprised how much you'll have saved at the end of the year!

Drink coffee before you leave home and bring bottled water. This will help to reduce impulse buying of beverages while you're out or on-the-go.

Budget properly. If you are aware of how much money you're spending on a monthly basis, you'll be less likely to overspend. If you are very conservative with your budget, you may have some money left over at the end of the month to put in your savings account and/or toward financial goals.

Make one day a week a "spending-free day". In other words, choose a day each week and try to avoid spending any money then. This sounds weird, but it will give you courage, and isn't as hard as you think. It will help if you:

  • Use the groceries to prepare your breakfast, lunch, and dinner.

  • Find a free way to get around. Ride a bike, or carpool with a coworker or classmate. Spend no money on transportation.

Leave your credit card at home. Credit cards have a way of sneaking out of your wallet and running up charges. But if your card is at home, you won't be inclined to use it. Take cash or a debit card only.

Lower your electric bill. This is very easy to do... Turn your heat down five degrees and wear a sweater when it's cold. In the summer, set your A.C. five degrees warmer and wear a t-shirt when you're at home. You might also consider sealing the cracks around doors and windows for better insulation - The caulk and caulk gun you buy to do this will pay for itself after the first couple of months of utility bills!

Wash your car at home. Spend just a few dollars on a bottle of soap and you can get a couple dozen hand washes out of it for your car. This is a lot cheaper than going out to the automated or laser wash every couple of weeks.

Regularly service your vehicle. Serviced vehicles run better and longer, and have less breakdowns. Paying a little bit for maintenance along the way is better than a costly and unexpected repair down the road.

For more advice, you can find additional saving tips throughout the resources on this website.

Good luck and happy saving!