Spending Less Money is Like Making More

I have said before that spending less money is like making more.

After all, if you bought everything you currently have for 30% less, you could have a big chunk of money right now for whatever you wanted to spend it on.

But perhaps I haven’t had enough content on how to spend less, so this week I’m going to cover the topic again.

Some of the following tips are from The Secret Information Course, which is still free to sign up for (although The Secrets Package that it promotes has a lot more great information).

Keep Your Lawyers Bill Down Always be prepared when you talk to your lawyer, so you’ll spend less time and therefore less money. If you have a question, wait if you can, until other questions come to mind. If you call three times a day with quick questions, you’ll be charged a minimum 15 minutes for each of those calls — even if they take only 2 minutes. It is better to address everything in one call.

Diamond Ring Savings Secret Buying an engagement or other ring for your girlfriend, fiancee or wife? Why not have it made? Often it is cheaper (and more romantic) to buy a diamond or gemstone and then have it set in a ring by a jeweler, rather than buy a ring that is already made. In fact, if you buy your diamonds wholesale from a reputable dealer, you can save hundreds of dollars. You can also honestly say you had it specially made for her.

Cheaper Rent Paying too much for rent? What if you find a suitable place for less, but you are stuck in a long-term lease? Ask your landlord if you can “buy out” of your lease. If it is an easy to rent apartment, or if rents have gone up while you were there, he might allow this for say $500. If you had nine months to go, and will pay $75 less at the new place, you get a net savings of $400 ($900 — $500).

Look Down Grocery stores purposely put more expensive products at eye level to sell more of them. Look up or look down and you might find a cheaper loaf of bread or can of peas. With cereal, however, the most expensive brands may be at your kid’s eye level — where they can see them and excitedly demand that you buy them. A lot of research has gone into finding ways to get the most money out of you at the grocery store.

Car Insurance Tip Lower your premiums by removing kids from the policy. You may have already discovered that you pay a lot for insurance as long as you have driving-age children at home. Even if they are off at school, if their legal residence is your house, you pay more. However, there is a little-known exception to this rule. If your children are at a college that’s more than 100 miles away, you can have them taken off the insurance policy. This can dramatically reduce your premiums. The catch? They are excluded drivers, so you can’t let them drive the car when they come home to visit.

The Cost of a Pet Spending less is not just about finding a good deal. It also has to do with strategic planning and considering the costs of the decisions we make.

For example, people often get a pet without any idea what it costs to have it. According to the ASPCA the average annual cost of a large dog is $235 for food, and $260 for vaccinations and annual examinations, or about $500 total — without the costs of any serious illnesses, purchase of toys, damage done by the dog around the house, or dog sitting fees while traveling.

Many pet owners will tell you that you can expect to spend a thousand dollars annually for a dog. Cats are almost as expensive, because of the added cost of litter, as well as the more expensive damage they sometimes do. Keep these costs in mind when deciding whether to take in a pet.

Also remember that when you generously give a friend or family member a cuddly puppy or kitten, you just gave that person an expensive responsibility.

They could easily spend more than $10,000 caring for your gift during its life. Spending less and still getting what you want means getting more of what you want with the money that is saved.

Keep that in mind before you commit to working two jobs just to make a little extra cash. You might do better with a few minutes careful thought and planning rather than hours of hard work.