Last year, Brian and I attempted to make some major cutbacks in October. See our weekly results HERE, HERE, HERE & HERE. Although the sacrifice was hard, the savings were well worth it. Our electricity bill was significantly less, and of course our spending on dining out as well. October is a very critical, financial month as we are quickly approaching the holiday season. I've already seen Christmas stuff out in the stores. So being extra careful & wise with our spending in October will help better prepare us for the holidays.
After much discussion, we came up with a list of random ways we can save (and make) a little extra over the next 4 weeks.
1) Electricity Off - We already do this, but we are going to bump it up a notch. Unplug unused items, keep the lights off, etc.
2) A/C Off - Texas heat is BRUTAL! Luckily it's starting to cool down in DFW. I recently made some solar panels for our house, and I can already tell a HUGE difference in the heat entering our house. I have been keeping the A/C off during the day, and at home if possible.
3) $20 per Week for Dining - This is basically only going out once a week. Yikes! If we just take it 1 week at a time, we should be fine. But we'll see how this holds up.
4) Pantry Eating - Unless I can get a smoking good deal, I am only going to spend money on essentials (fruits, milk, eggs, etc). I want to eat up the food we already have FIRST. I will have to get creative with my meal planning.
5) Cut Laundry Loads - I know this might be impossible for most families, but for our family of 2, it could work. I'm going to try to do 1 load of whites & 1 load of darks per week. If we have boo-koos of clothes piling up, I might just pick the ones that need to be washed first. So I might wash more underwear and work clothes but less towels.
6) $200 Extra Income - Last year we tried $100 extra, and met this goal. This year, I want to attempt $200 extra in October. I would like to NET $200 from selling stuff on Craigslist, Ebay, Cash4Books, HalfPricedBooks, Consignment, Garage Sale, etc. I've already been doing this somewhat but would like to put a little more effort into it this month...and make Brian help me too.
Saving money FEELS like you are making more money. "Cutting back" or SACRIFICING leaves extra money for other things, which in turn does feel like you are making extra money. You no longer have more month than money.
So for the next month, each Friday's FF post will be about my sacrifices for the week...kinda like a journal. Sometimes verbalizing or typing out my goals helps keep me accountable. I encourage you to join in with me this month. Write it down, comment me on what you plan to do this month in terms of "cutting back" and let's help keep each other accountable.
Enjoy the FREE savings?