From cutting coupons to searching out the best deals online, getting creative allows you to save money in almost every area of your life—but when you’re busy juggling work, family and a social life, the task can seem daunting. Who has time to sift through newspapers to save a few cents on peanut butter?
Fortunately, there are ways to save money when you’re short on time. We’ve assembled some quick and easy tips for cutting costs that are simple to implement and won’t occupy much of your day.
Rewards programs are a treasure trove of savings, from grocery store rewards cards to frequent purchaser cards. When in doubt, if you are offered access to a free rewards program, agree to join. Among money-saving tips, this is about as easy as it gets.
Most rewards programs are tracked via a physical card or your phone number. Whether you save money immediately at the point of purchase or build up to a single reward, rewards programs are simple because the store does the tracking for you while you reap the benefits.
Automatic Bill Payments
Many people don’t realize that agreeing to automatic bill payments can amount to significant monthly savings. For starters, having funds automatically deducted from your checking account means you will never accrue late fees or additional interest because you forgot to initiate a payment. Some lenders or organizations also grant a discount to customers who are signed up for automatic payments.
From your student loans to your electric bill, you may be eligible for a percentage off of your interest rate or monthly dues simply by having your payments taken out on a regular schedule. That makes automatic bill payments a responsible way to keep on top of payments and one of our favorite money-saving tips.
Automatic Savings Transfers
Some banks make it easy to put money into a savings account by instituting “keep the change” programs. These initiatives work by rounding up every purchase to the next full dollar and putting the extra cash into your savings account.
For example, a purchase of $7.50 with your checking account would be rounded up to $8; the actual purchase price is deducted from your checking account to pay the vendor, and in this case, an additional 50 cents would be transferred from your checking account into a savings account.
An automatic transfer program is a reliable, slow-paced way to store away some money that will come in handy on a rainy day. Best of all, you don’t have to take even a moment from your day to manually transfer money into a savings account.
Buy in Bulk
Buying non-perishable items, such as canned goods or shampoo, in bulk stands to result in major savings. Generally speaking, items that are bundled into groups are sold at a cheaper price than those sold alone. If you have extra storage space, there is really no good reason to purchase items piecemeal that could be picked up in bulk.
Stores like Sam’s Club or Costco make it easy to buy items en masse, since they deal pretty much exclusively in bulk products. These stores, however, do charge a membership fee. To avoid the cost of membership and still save money, look to other major retailers for the “family size” of groceries and toiletries. If you don’t have a family to share with, consider splitting a bulk purchase with a friend or neighbor.
Saving money doesn’t have to be a time consuming endeavor. These tips can give your wallet a break without hindering your daily schedule. Always remember that saving just a few cents here and there can really add up over time. Even if the savings you’re offered seem insignificant, you will thank yourself later if you take advantage now.
What are your tips for saving money without spending a lot of time? Tell us in the comments or on Twitter!
Photo Credit: TaxCredits.net
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