Want more to spend on what really matters?

Reduce these expenses

Everything – from groceries to gas to rent – is becoming more expensive. Just look at the cost of bread. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, in June of this year, the cost of white bread jumped 10.1% compared to June 2021. And the price of wheat bread and other “fancier” favorites spiked an even higher 11.6%. In terms of dollars that means that, right this instant, the cost of white bread per pound is $1.69. It’s insane. And it’s not going to get better anytime soon.

So, what can you do? You can reduce what you’re spending in other areas. It takes a little work, but it’s worth it. Here are several ideas – from packing your lunch to auditing your expenses to switching to a budget friendly cell phone plan – to get you started.

Pack your lunch

It’s easy to give in to the convenience of fast food. But going out to get lunch every day, at $10 or so a pop, is $50 you could’ve saved. And you could’ve eaten healthier, too. We know of one woman in the U.K. who has come up with time-saving way to make lunch sandwiches for her kids and herself. She pre-makes all the sandwiches in one sitting and freezes them, pulling them out on the morning she needs them. Her trick to preventing sogginess: she doesn’t use butter and she squeezes all the air out of the sandwich bag. One of the tricks to this is getting into the habit of shopping for lunch foods and preparing tomorrow’s meal before you go to bed. And until this habit gets really ingrained, leave yourself a note for the morning or you might just leave your lunch in the refrigerator!

Cancel those sneaky subscriptions

Cable television. Magazines. Gym memberships. Weight loss and meditation apps. These and others like them are subscriptions so many of us forget about, but still get charged for. Set aside time to review your credit card statements and checking account statements and you might be amazed at the number of items you thought you cancelled but are still paying for. Don’t have time to do it yourself? That’s ok. Try Truebill. The site searches forgotten subscriptions on your behalf quickly and easily. But just be aware that for every dollar you save by using the service, Truebill takes 40% as what it calls a “savings fee.” So if they save you $500 annually on a particular bill, they’ll charge you $200.

Do a home energy audit

Did you know that your coffee maker, toaster, phone charger and other devices suck up energy even when you’re not using them? They do – and they can account for as much as 20% of your monthly electric bill. In fact, according to the Alliance to Save Energy, the average U.S. household spends $5,550 a year on energy. Take a walk around your home and unplug the items mentioned here and others you’re bound to discover. You can also make your home more energy efficient by replacing air filters every three to six months, and making sure your windows, vents, and even the space around electrical outlets are properly insulated. This prevents your A/C in the summer and heat in the winter from being wasted. To see how you’re doing, ask your utility company to provide you a year over year expenditures statement so you can see if any of your bills are trending upward. If that’s the case, take steps immediately to stop it.

Lower your auto insurance payment

You compare the prices of electronics and pet food and clothes before you buy them, so why not compare auto insurance quotes? You can do it two ways. One, you can call around for quotes. It sounds old fashioned but we know one woman who made a few phone calls and replaced her $300 a month auto insurance plan with one for $55. In less than 20-minutes, she saved $2,940 a year. The other way is to go out to Experian.com or TheZebra.com. Both provide multiple auto insurance quotes in minutes. You can see all the best rates side-by-side, request information on the one that best meets your needs, and quite possibly save yourself more than $900 this year.

Delete delivery apps

It’s so tempting to have ready to eat meals delivered right to your door. And while they might make your stomach happy, your wallet won’t feel the same. If you’ve got apps like UberEats, DoorDash, and GrubHub on your phone, delete them. You can still treat yourself to occasional takeout meals that you pick up yourself, or an evening or two out at a restaurant, but those apps are notorious for charging exorbitant fees on orders. On top of that, you also have to pay the delivery fee and tip the driver.

Ask for a lower interest rate

Are you paying a high interest rate on your credit card or cards? Contact your credit card company or companies and ask them to lower it. They won’t offer to do it, but if you have a history of making your payments on time and for at least the minimum payment required, pick up the phone and call. It’s really quite possible they’ll agree to lower your current interest rate. Remember: if you don’t ask, the answer is always no. So ask.

Audit your expenses for 30-days

To really get a handle on your cash flow, you need to take a close look at what exactly you’re spending money on. From fixed expenses like car payments to variable expenses like groceries and entertainment, take the time to log them every day for one month. You can do this with an Excel spreadsheet, a Google sheet, even a notepad and pen. Of course you can also use your banking app or one like YNAB (You Need a Budget), which is terrific for IOS users, and 1Money, which is growing in popularity among Android users. At the end of the 30-days, you’ll see what you’re spending money on, how much, and where you could cut back. We know one woman who suspected she had an office supply “addiction,” so to speak. After her 30-day audit she realized she’d spent $212 on Sharpie pens, pretty folders, and notebooks she absolutely did not need. We’re pleased to report that it took her a whole minute to recover. 

Switch cell phone carriers

If you’re using one of the pricy wireless providers – Verizon, AT&T, or T-Mobile – you could save yourself a bundle by switching to PureTalk.

Pure Talk is proud to offer you plans starting as low as $20 a month for unlimited talk and text and 2GB of data. Even better, all our phone plans are flexible. If you need more data one month, you can simply go into your account portal and add more. When next month rolls around, if you need less data, you can go right back into your portal and reduce it. Simply log onto PureTalk.com, click on My Account, and select Manage My Data. Make your changes, save them, and log out. It’s that simple.

Just as importantly, PureTalk is on the same 5G network – the most reliable network in the country – as the pricey wireless companies. The 5G network provides the best cell coverage at significantly greater speed and is more flexible, reliable, and secure than any network before it. What does this mean to you? It means not having to worry about whether or not you’ll miss your favorite podcast – you won’t, or connect with your college student before he or she takes off on spring break – you will.

And speaking of kids, families of four who switch to PureTalk save $75 a month for an average of $900 a year. That’s a lot of money; money that can certainly go toward better things than your cell phone bill.

Why choose PureTalk?
When you choose PureTalk, you’re choosing to support a company whose values align with your own. You’re choosing to support a company whose CEO is a U.S. veteran. And you’re also choosing to support American jobs: 100% of our customer service is based right here in the United States of America.

Even more importantly, PureTalk offers a risk-free, thirty-day money back guarantee. That means you have absolutely nothing to lose. Sign up and give us a try for one month. We know you’ll love us. But if you don’t, simply cancel your service within thirty-days and we’ll return your money without any penalties. With PureTalk, you can even bring your phone and keep your phone number, if you like.

Select the PureTalk plan that’s perfect for your lifestyle and start saving today. We can’t bring down the cost of bread – or gas or clothes or pet food – but we’re happy to leave more in your pocket to put toward them.

Posted 2 weeks ago