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Intentional women are always on looking for a few ways to save money! As the holidays are approaching, money is tight for many of us. I wanted to put together a few easy and simple ways to build up your emergency fund!
1. Sell items you don’t use, need, or want anymore by having a garage sale, through a consignment store, on ebay, or on Facebook. This is a great way to clear up clutter, get rid of excess, and have an easier time cleaning your home!
I’ve had really good success with getting rid of baby items, children’s clothes, toys, and household items such as mirrors, pictures, and kitchen gadgets.
I know I emphasize these a lot but this is seriously one easy way to save money. I ran into Hy-Vee last week to pick up some cupcakes and since we were traveling for over an hour grabbed a bunch of bananas for snacks for the kids. Bananas were on sale and Checkout 51 had a $.25 cash back offer that I redeemed. A huge savings? No. But every little bit adds up and it took less than 2 minutes to upload the receipt on my phone. That is one simple way that I can help save our family money.
3. Eat at home and pack your lunch for work.
It has been a few years since I’ve worked outside the home but when I did, taking my lunch saved me at least $5 each day. That’s $25 a week or around $100 each month. Take that money that you saved and add it into your emergency fund. It does add up!
4. Pick up a few hours at work or look for a 2nd job.
When times are tough, we need to get creative! What jobs could you do on the side that won’t interfere with your job. Sometimes the 2nd job isn’t glamorous but it doesn’t have to be forever! If you decide to do a home-based business, I highly encourage you to evaluate your start up costs. I am all about you investing in yourself, but if you have to spend a lot of money on start up, you are going the opposite direction of your goal! Or can you just work a few extra hours a week at your current job and add that money into your emergency fund!
5. Avoid Shopping! Utilize a No Spend Challenge and bank the money you have saved!
6. When you have to shop, check sites such as Ebates to see if you can get cash back before ordering! I was happy to see that several I shop with (Walgreens for photo developing, Qvc, Zulily, & Kohls to name a few) all participate and you can redeem cash back!
I utilize Ebates mostly during the holiday season. Loading up my kids and taking them Christmas shopping is about as fun as going to the dentist and letting him drill on my teeth. No thanks. Last year when I ordered my Canon Rebel camera from QVC on sale (a Today’s Special Value for those of you who like to shop there), I got around $50 back through Ebates making my camera buy a really good deal. When you can take a great sale and also get cash back, I call that a great success!
7. Entertain at home.
Going out to eat with friends can get expensive. Between drinks, appetizers, and possibly dessert, you may spend more on a night out than you did for the whole week of groceries! However, by having them over to your home and enjoying company in your own home (where no one is rushing you to pay your ticket, close up for the evening, or expecting a tip) you can have a wonderful evening with less money spent. Pot-lucks and barbecues are fun too where you can share recipes and friendship.
8. Surround yourself with friends who have the same money goals as you.
I can’t stress this point enough. When you are trying to save money and you have friends who could care less about savings, emergency funds, or paying off debt, it is hard to stay on your own financial track. Give yourself a “blow” category in your budget and that can help, but by having like-minded friends, you will be comfortable in your own shoes.