Author Topic: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?  (Read 3516262 times)

Thinkum

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #9900 on: October 07, 2017, 09:42:34 AM »
Managed to get out of CostCo without buying anything else.

Impressive. Teach me your ways.

Go with a list and stick to it, no matter what. The same as going to the market. We have done the same and get incredulous looks from others in line and cashiers. Always like "that's it?!?"

So far this morning I have saved money by drinking coffee at home and plan on eating breakfast at home as well. It would be super simple to walk to the numerous tasty breakfast options around, but homemade breakfast and homebrewed cold brew is top notch. Saving money is fun.

frooglepoodle

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #9901 on: October 07, 2017, 11:14:10 AM »
Shopped at the farmer's market with a prioritized list, and a budget.

Baked my own bread and pumpkin pie granola.

Spending the day close to home instead of going out and paying for an activity.


horsepoor

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #9902 on: October 07, 2017, 11:52:11 AM »
Managed to get out of CostCo without buying anything else.

Impressive. Teach me your ways.

Go with a list and stick to it, no matter what. The same as going to the market. We have done the same and get incredulous looks from others in line and cashiers. Always like "that's it?!?"


Yes, what Thinkum said.  I've had an eye out casually for new soup bowls, and I spied and fondled a nice set there that I now want to go back and buy.  Resisted once, but should have gone straight to the dog food then GTFO.

Imma

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #9903 on: October 07, 2017, 12:34:00 PM »
Had friends over and cooked dinner and dessert from scratch. I'm not sure if it was actually much cheaper to make the cake instead of buying one, but baking is more fun. I baked my grandma's variation on a traditional Dutch cake. It's incredibly easy and my grandma's cakes are famous. Plus, I love baking recipes that my grandma taught me because I have so many good childhood memories of being in the kitchen together. She's well in her 80s now and I saved her a few slices because she doesn't make it anymore. She still bakes a bit, but this cake requires some physical strength.

By cooking from scratch from the pantry I have also avoided going to the grocery store and buying things I don't need.

MaybeBabyMustache

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #9904 on: October 07, 2017, 03:32:32 PM »
-Went for a hike with a friend. Free, and an opportunity for exercise+chatting
-Avoided lunch for myself at Costco by grabbing a sandwich from the fridge on my way out the door.(The boys did get lunch, so $5 on that). Had I planned ahead, I could have made & packed a lunch for everyone. So, fail on that part.
-Carefully reviewed/trimmed our Costco list, as we're leaving for Hawaii on Wednesday, and my parents will be at the house with the kids. They eat different things than us, so it's less wasteful to leave money for groceries, vs trying to guess.
-Made cashew butter for a recipe.
-Used up almond butter in a protein ball recipe, to bring with us on our trip, and reduce eating out
-Used up a variety of pantry items that I've been trying to get rid of, in a granola bar recipe. Felt so good to empty out a few bags of lingering items.
-Redeemed Bing rewards for a $5 Amazon gift card
-Combined errands to reduce gas costs
-Price checked mushrooms at Costco, and determined I didn't need the giant package. Picked up just a handful at the produce stand, saving $3.50
-Bought laundry pods (which are, IMO, a giant waste of money) for our trip to Hawaii. We have a free washing machine in the hotel, and will make use of it. The laundry pods are lighter than soap, and easier to transport. Shopped around for the "best" deal possible, even though it was still pricey.
-Making dinner at home tonight, and serving with a bottle of wine purchased on sale. No date night, but a fabulous evening at home. We may even get crazy & play Monopoly with the kids.

4alpacas

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #9905 on: October 07, 2017, 03:55:29 PM »
I wanted to buy ice cream while I was out and walking around.  I resisted.  My neighbor dropped off some cookies her daughter made...score!

I'm a red panda

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #9906 on: October 07, 2017, 07:20:21 PM »
Bit of a breakdown so I decided I wanted to dye my hair. Got a quote from a salon for $160.

Went to Sally's spent $15 and DH bleached it tonight and I'll dye it tomorrow

marty998

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #9907 on: October 07, 2017, 10:03:46 PM »
Bought laundry powder at 50% off today. Enough to last me to mid next year.

Hula Hoop

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #9908 on: October 08, 2017, 02:22:58 AM »
I'm packing lunch to eat on the train for the out of town excursion we're planning today.  As usual, we'll also bring refillable water bottles for the whole family.  On the way home we plan to spend the gift card that my boss gave me for Christmas on dinner at a nice place.  The gift card should cover the 4 of us.  Unfortunately, the gift card is to a restaurant that's quite far from where we live and we don't own a car.  However, the train home from our destination stops right next to it.

dreams_and_discoveries

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #9909 on: October 08, 2017, 06:48:01 AM »
Today no money is being spent, did a long run, then plan to rest, clean, cook and eat.

Yesterday went scrumping, to an abandoned orchard; it's great fun, you get the most out of it with old hiking clothes, so you can confidently wade in amongst the nettles and brambles...I was a bit too late for apples, but got loads of pears. Now I need pear recipes, thinking a pear tart? Stopped in Lidl to pick up mozzarella, also picked up some bargain beetroot and tomatoes for lunches next week and no other unnecessary purchases. 

lemanfan

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #9910 on: October 08, 2017, 07:01:47 AM »
Just a little buy nothing day - only eating from the fridge and only activities are free like reading and exercise.

For cooking, I've started to get really hooked on my Sous Vide gear - soo easy to get great results, and SO EASY to heat up frozen leftovers.  Today - steak that was orginally cooked a week ago.

nick663

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #9911 on: October 08, 2017, 07:06:51 AM »
Switched car insurance.  Geico raised our rate close to $100 from 6 months ago and Progressive came in $322 less.

MaybeBabyMustache

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #9912 on: October 08, 2017, 03:46:17 PM »
-Offered a soccer carpool to another parent (saving them money, and time). We tradeoff, so it all works out
-Wanted to make muffins to bring as breakfast for our upcoming vacation. We were out of all of the standard fruit mixins (how are the freezer bananas all gone?!), so I dug deep & used our "smoothie fruit bag". The smoothie fruit bag contains all uneaten fruit. It's a wild assortment of fruit, so I wasn't sure how it would play out in muffins. I defrosted 4 cups, ran it all through the Pulse setting on the food processor, and followed my standard muffin recipe. Success! My husband, 2 kids, & bonus friend have been raving about the muffins.
-I usually get a pedicure about 1x/year, before a vacation. My toes are in rough shape following a long run, but I'm going to give myself a pedicure this afternoon, saving around $35
-After an issue with over watering (someone forgot to turn off our hose), we decided to invest in a timer for the water system. It's about $150. I happened to research our local water utility, and they are offering $125 rebates! Woohoo!
-Making dinner at home tonight. My husband is grilling burgers & potatoes (it's still really warm here in NorCal). I'll make a salad, and we'll drink a few more glasses of the wine we opened yesterday.

mustachepungoeshere

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #9913 on: October 08, 2017, 04:52:56 PM »
Guys, we've hit 200 pages!

My small thing: I worked my way through a tube of hand cream at work, then five little airline bottles, now I've refilled one of the little bottles from my big pump pack of moisturiser at home.

(I probably sound like some kind of skincare fiend, posting about hand cream all the time, but the industrial grade hand soap at work seems to be just this side of acid.)

Linda_Norway

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #9914 on: October 09, 2017, 01:09:32 AM »
I things go as planned today, DH and I will skip phones in the afternoon. That way I can use the electronic train ticket on his phone to travel to the city and back for free. This is the first time I am travelling to the city in the evening/weekend that we can do this trick, it was about time.

Stachetastic

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #9915 on: October 09, 2017, 06:02:04 AM »
Weekend recap: Hit up thrift stores to get the kids' halloween costumes; got the youngest done for under $6 and the oldest for $4.50!

Took the family to a Fly In, where we ogled the planes, ate lunch, played in the kids area, fished, rode horses and a little train, pet goats, painted pumpkins, etc. Hours of fun. Admission cost was a side dish and a 2 litre of soda. Took an unopened bottle of ginger ale left over from our last bout of stomach bug and made a .99 box of brownies and a pumpkin cake I had been craving, but didn't want a whole cake sitting around the house. Hubs and I also volunteered working a few stations, so will return in a few weeks for a free thank-you lunch for volunteers.

Today starts husband's lay off, so he is spending it fixing the brakes on our truck, replacing a lock on one of the rental garages, and starting his "to do" list on our home.  A penny saved is a penny earned!

Imma

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #9916 on: October 09, 2017, 06:17:54 AM »
I washed all of our cleaning cloths / rags. I always wash them, many people think that's crazy.

I have been advised by our washing machine repair man (having a washing machine repaired is apparantly also crazy, but the repair added 3 years to the machine's life so far for 35) to run a cycle at maximum heat without soap but with vinegar every month or so. I use a clean rag every time I clean, and I dry the used rags and then collect them in a bucket. Every time I run a maximum heat cycle I throw all the rags in the bucket in the machine. They get boiled for two hours so I'm sure they're clean enough to be used again. I know the hottest cycle is pretty bad for the environment, but so is replacing a broken washing machine. This way, I can re-use my cloths and keep my machine in a good shape for a longer time. It's 11 years old now and still working fine.

Hula Hoop

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #9917 on: October 09, 2017, 06:32:23 AM »
Imma - is this a front loading machine?  We have one of those and now I'm wondering if we should do the same.  We have reusable rags too - mostly recycled from old clothes, sheets and towels.

Imma

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #9918 on: October 09, 2017, 06:42:07 AM »
Yes, it's a front loading machine.

Linda_Norway

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #9919 on: October 09, 2017, 06:49:21 AM »
I washed all of our cleaning cloths / rags. I always wash them, many people think that's crazy.

I have been advised by our washing machine repair man (having a washing machine repaired is apparantly also crazy, but the repair added 3 years to the machine's life so far for 35) to run a cycle at maximum heat without soap but with vinegar every month or so. I use a clean rag every time I clean, and I dry the used rags and then collect them in a bucket. Every time I run a maximum heat cycle I throw all the rags in the bucket in the machine. They get boiled for two hours so I'm sure they're clean enough to be used again. I know the hottest cycle is pretty bad for the environment, but so is replacing a broken washing machine. This way, I can re-use my cloths and keep my machine in a good shape for a longer time. It's 11 years old now and still working fine.

The vinegar is probably to solve problems with chalk.
Running a hot laundry is probably good from time to time.
« Last Edit: October 10, 2017, 02:19:01 AM by Linda_Norway »

MaybeBabyMustache

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #9920 on: October 09, 2017, 05:02:29 PM »
-Carpooled to work with my husband today. We don't normally work near each other, but he had a meeting
-Ate free breakfast, lunch, & snacks at work
-Took free (temporary) work carpool back to my house.
-Sold an ugly yard ornament for $5 on local Facebook swap. (It came with the house when we bought it.)
-Having leftovers for dinner. A yummy rice pilaf + chicken dish that is sort of fallish.
-Investigated getting the incentive for having a health physical. They cancelled it for 2017, but I still made my appointment. One yearly physical is covered 100% by my insurance, so no reason not to get checked out.

Larsg

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #9921 on: October 10, 2017, 01:26:38 AM »
We reviewed all online subscriptions and cancelled anything we have not been using. This includes Netflix, any 30 day free trials we signed up for with no intention of keeping unless it knocked our sox off; reviewed our monthly amazon subscribe and save items and moved out anything we don't need or cancelled anything we no longer use or found at a better price; Performed out weekly food inventory of the fridge to see if we really needed to go to the store this weekend and determined we had plenty for a few more days; scrubbed sales for stores near us where we can buy those sale items in bulk; clean out the cars, backpacks, purses, briefcases of "Things" we hard in there that become "product replacements" on the shopping list - e.g. pens, pencils, sunscreen, hand wipes, snacks, etc. They get put away and counted back in our "in stock" inventory. This is a typical, exciting weekend routine for us, keeping track of our stock and re-evaluating if we really need to replace it.

ketchup

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #9922 on: October 10, 2017, 08:01:45 AM »
Managed to get out of CostCo without buying anything else.

Impressive. Teach me your ways.
My strategy is to not get a cart - mostly to save time but it also means I can't get anything extra.  I'll happily be that moron carrying around 35lbs of dog food (that I buy for a friend), 2L of olive oil, 4lbs of bacon, half a gallon of heavy cream, 4lb of frozen broccoli, and 2 dozen eggs.

The trickiest part is holding/balancing all that shit while trying to show the receipt to the person at the door on your way out.

4alpacas

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #9923 on: October 10, 2017, 10:45:08 AM »
Managed to get out of CostCo without buying anything else.

Impressive. Teach me your ways.
My strategy is to not get a cart - mostly to save time but it also means I can't get anything extra.  I'll happily be that moron carrying around 35lbs of dog food (that I buy for a friend), 2L of olive oil, 4lbs of bacon, half a gallon of heavy cream, 4lb of frozen broccoli, and 2 dozen eggs.
WOW!  I'm impressed!

Took my car to get an oil change and resisted all of the upsell items.  This is the thing that I'm most proud of because I struggle to say no to "preventative maintenance."
Used a free shuttle to get to work
Packed breakfast, lunch, and snacks

Linda_Norway

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #9924 on: October 10, 2017, 10:50:14 AM »
I took the leftover apples and pears from work and am currently cooking the pairs so we can have them for dinner as a veggie dish.

The previous owner of our house is going to pay us 18.000 Norwegian crowns (2000 USD), because he promised us cheap electricity that we didn't get. This is 40% of our electricity bill for the last two years. (We do not have natural gas).


tyort1

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #9925 on: October 10, 2017, 12:20:42 PM »
I convinced my wife to take home made coffee in a travel mug to a meeting she's having at a coffee shop.  She has lots of coffee shop meetings, if I can get her to keep it up it'll save us a nice bit of money.

Stachetastic

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #9926 on: October 10, 2017, 05:19:34 PM »
The organizers of the Fly In I posted about yesterday (one of whom is my sister in law) ended up with a bunch of leftovers, so she has been dropping stuff off to us. Last night it was 3 bottles of ketchup, a large bottle of mustard, a jar of salsa and a bag of tortilla chips. Tonight it was 64 sausage patties, 4 huge onions, a bag of apples, about 8 potatoes, and 2 full loaves of Texas toast. They were so happy to get rid of stuff, and we are thrilled to take it off their hands.

Bracken_Joy

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #9927 on: October 10, 2017, 07:39:00 PM »
Husband got trapped unexpectedly out of town due to work, and will be gone the next day or two minimum. I also had a long, tired day at work. But I drove straight home and immediately showered and put on PJs so I wasn't tempted to go buy something to eat out. Instead, found leftover roast and chimichurri in the fridge, and will follow up with some oatmeal with peanut butter and jelly in it. Weird meal, but way cheaper and healthier, I'm sure.

(Downside is husband had to go out to eat, so we won't pocket his per diem. But since this is turning into about 90 million hours of work, that will more than balance out).

FrugalAussie

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #9928 on: October 11, 2017, 05:45:57 AM »
Best ever buy from Aldi for me today, a ROTI MAKER.  It's awesome! 
I made 15 smallish rotis for a cost of about $2.  We ate three each and froze the cooked surplus. I cook a lot of vegetarian Indian food and have tried many time to make accompanying breads, no luck.  I'm thrilled, more than happy to pay the $25.
One more thing I can cook from scratch at home.

mustachepungoeshere

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #9929 on: October 11, 2017, 05:48:49 PM »
Negotiated down my car insurance, again.

We changed cars last year and the insurance company set up the policy to insure what we paid for the car, not what it would cost to replace it.

I finally convinced my husband to call and increase the agreed value (I wanted him to be part of the process so he's more aware of what we pay).

The agreed value increased by $15,000, and the premiums increased by $10 a month.

Me: Did you try to get that down?
Him: No, why would I do that?
Me: Well now our insurance has gone up.
Him: Yes, but the car is insured for more.

So I phoned them, asked what we could do to lower the premiums, and they dropped it by a little over $10 a month. I'm now paying less then I was before.

Him: Is this what you do, just call people and say, 'Yeah, I don't want to pay this much anymore?'
Me: Pretty much!

Saving $120+ a year and car is now insured properly.

ElleFiji

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #9930 on: October 11, 2017, 06:17:01 PM »
I needed a few things for a birthday present, and the store offers buy 3, get 3 free. So I picked up a few Christmas things too!

Tom Bri

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #9931 on: October 11, 2017, 07:26:46 PM »
Not quite done yet, but in the process of making my own skin lotion. Beeswax from my own beehive, melted down and strained, and add some olive oil to soften it. I made a batch a few months ago and love it, works better than literally any skin product I have tried. I am a nurse, and wash my hands about a hundred times a day, so skin gets very dry and cracked.

katekat

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #9932 on: October 12, 2017, 05:08:27 AM »
Didn't buy a chocolate bar I was craving this morning, and instead recognised that I was:

a) hungry
b) wanting a 'treat' rather than a chocolate bar in particular,

Had a banana for point (a) and a mochaccino for point (b), both things I can get free at work, instead.

Linda_Norway

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #9933 on: October 12, 2017, 06:56:08 AM »
For my work I travelled to our other office in the big city. As we are in a whole day meeting, I get some money for buying lunch. I ate my lunch from home, so I have earned some/saved money this way.

merlin7676

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #9934 on: October 12, 2017, 08:31:17 AM »
Not specifically today but recently and upcoming.

Switched from directTV to slingtv and changed internet provider so that saves over $100 a month. Personally I'd be all for getting rid of TV entirely and just using our netflix but roommate is a TV whore and records about 20 different shows plus all the news and other shows he watches.

Switched our tmobile family plan (me, husband, and roommate) to a plan that is $10 cheaper a month plus credits us with about $10 in netflix rebates a month so we only play $3 or $4 for netflix a month now

Have a 10:30am doctor appointment in two weeks so got permission to work from home thus saving me commute time and/or save PTO day

Have all day training tomorrow, next monday and tuesday.  Work is providing lunch. (not sure if I will partake as my lunch is usually fruit, veggies, and nuts as I cut out most dairy, dropped my meat consumption to a few times a week, and mostly eat fruits and veggies and other low starches).

plainjane

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #9935 on: October 12, 2017, 10:00:08 AM »
Had a banana for point (a) and a mochaccino for point (b), both things I can get free at work, instead.

Awesome self awareness.

Epor

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #9936 on: October 12, 2017, 02:34:41 PM »

My 5th grader wanted to start trombone, so I signed up for a local music store instrument trial purchase. Cost: 25 to sign up, and it would be free for three months. After that they would charge my CC 35/mo until they reached the total of 904.46. So... after making sure my son actually like to play trombone, I bought one using the local craisglist (we met at the music store for inspection) and cancelled by trial.

My Cost: 365 (signup fee + trombone) vs 929.46 -> Savings of 564.46.


dandarc

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #9937 on: October 12, 2017, 03:02:19 PM »

My 5th grader wanted to start trombone, so I signed up for a local music store instrument trial purchase. Cost: 25 to sign up, and it would be free for three months. After that they would charge my CC 35/mo until they reached the total of 904.46. So... after making sure my son actually like to play trombone, I bought one using the local craisglist (we met at the music store for inspection) and cancelled by trial.

My Cost: 365 (signup fee + trombone) vs 929.46 -> Savings of 564.46.
Heck - where I worked back in college, the rental would have cost around the same, you could have done exactly what you did and bought a used trombone from the very same store for around $300 as well.  Rental program is a cash cow because most people don't think beyond "what do I have to spend today to walk out of here with a horn".  Anyone who spent more than 5 minutes looking around the store first would be like "I think I'll just buy one of those $300 ones right there."

Save money in the future - make sure kid doesn't sit around tapping the end of the slide into the floor.  Eventually, enough flattening will happen that it has to be fixed, and it is tempting to do because there is usually a rubber bumper on the end and there's a lot of sitting around not doing much in band rehearsal.

mustachepungoeshere

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #9938 on: October 13, 2017, 01:16:52 AM »
Ok, I have a confession to make.

Some of you may disagree with the dishonesty herein, and that's fine. I can take it.

Now that it is warming up in Sydney, my husband and I have been making smoothies again.

Milk, frozen banana, a little splash of vanilla. At least, that's how I make them.

When he makes them it seems to be milk, frozen banana, and a loooong pour of vanilla.

He went through a $12 bottle of vanilla extract in a week, and when we went to replace it, he insisted on buying the good stuff again.

Now I understand the virtue of proper vanilla. I've been making my own with vanilla beans and rum. And vanilla beans are unparalleled for making things like creme brulee.

But smoothies? I'm not paying $12 a week for smoothies.

I have a bottle of vanilla essence at home and I've been topping up the bottle of the good stuff.

I honestly don't think he can tell the difference - as long as he can see the seeds, he's happy.

So what's the verdict - am I a stingy wench?

Edited for typo.
« Last Edit: October 13, 2017, 06:18:42 PM by mustachepungoeshere »

Raenia

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #9939 on: October 13, 2017, 05:44:16 AM »
So what's the verdict - am I a stingy wench?

Nope, just a clever one!

Stachetastic

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #9940 on: October 13, 2017, 06:41:44 AM »


I have a bottle of vanilla essence at home and I've been topping up the bottle of the good stuff.

I honestly don't think he can tell the difference - as long as he can see the seeds, he's happy.

So what's the verdict - am I a stingy wench?

I would do the same thing!


We have been wanting new chairs for our kitchen table because the ones we have (purchased from a garage sale for $20 total) have been falling apart for years. Husband has repaired them several times, but they're holding on by a thread. People who visit are afraid to sit on them. So we've been keeping an eye out and yesterday my great aunt posted her garage sale info with some pics, and there was a table/chairs set for $75. And it's Ethan Allen! Hubs drove up yesterday and picked them up. The table is perfect, and the chairs are just ok. But it fits the space, everything is sturdy, and the price was right! Our original table was given to us by my mom, who got it from the thrift store for $5. Gonna post it for sale today.

Also picked up a Columbia sweatshirt at Salvation Army this week to flip. My first flip--wish me luck!
« Last Edit: October 13, 2017, 06:48:03 AM by Stachetastic »

Epor

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #9941 on: October 13, 2017, 08:37:02 AM »

My 5th grader wanted to start trombone, so I signed up for a local music store instrument trial purchase. Cost: 25 to sign up, and it would be free for three months. After that they would charge my CC 35/mo until they reached the total of 904.46. So... after making sure my son actually like to play trombone, I bought one using the local craisglist (we met at the music store for inspection) and cancelled by trial.

My Cost: 365 (signup fee + trombone) vs 929.46 -> Savings of 564.46.
Heck - where I worked back in college, the rental would have cost around the same, you could have done exactly what you did and bought a used trombone from the very same store for around $300 as well.  Rental program is a cash cow because most people don't think beyond "what do I have to spend today to walk out of here with a horn".  Anyone who spent more than 5 minutes looking around the store first would be like "I think I'll just buy one of those $300 ones right there."

Save money in the future - make sure kid doesn't sit around tapping the end of the slide into the floor.  Eventually, enough flattening will happen that it has to be fixed, and it is tempting to do because there is usually a rubber bumper on the end and there's a lot of sitting around not doing much in band rehearsal.

I know right? When I first read the terms of the trial/rent I was puzzled: "How on earth can the music store make any money out of this deal?". But then I realized that many parents would simply not bother to look for a used one because "is just 35/mo"!

Thanks for the pro-tip! I'll let my kid know for sure.

Epor

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #9942 on: October 13, 2017, 08:45:16 AM »
Ok, I have a confession to make.

Some of you may disagree with the dishonesty herein, and that's fine. I can take it.

Now that it is warming up in Sydney, my husband and I have been making smoothies again.

Milk, frozen banana, a little splash of vanilla. At least, that's how I make them.

When he makes them it seems to be milk, frozen banana, and a loooong pour of vanilla.

He went threw a $12 bottle of vanilla extract in a week, and when we went to replace it, he insisted on buying the good stuff again.

Now I understand the virtue of proper vanilla. I've been making my own with vanilla beans and rum. And vanilla beans are unparalleled for making things like creme brulee.

But smoothies? I'm not paying $12 a week for smoothies.

I have a bottle of vanilla essence at home and I've been topping up the bottle of the good stuff.

I honestly don't think he can tell the difference - as long as he can see the seeds, he's happy.

So what's the verdict - am I a stingy wench?

Ha! I did a similar thing... we were gifted a pound of coffee, and after trying it my husband went full coffee-connoisseur and declared he did not like it. Well; I kept it and every couple weeks or so i mixed some of it with our everyday coffee until it was gone. Husband never noticed.


dandarc

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #9943 on: October 13, 2017, 09:18:00 AM »

My 5th grader wanted to start trombone, so I signed up for a local music store instrument trial purchase. Cost: 25 to sign up, and it would be free for three months. After that they would charge my CC 35/mo until they reached the total of 904.46. So... after making sure my son actually like to play trombone, I bought one using the local craisglist (we met at the music store for inspection) and cancelled by trial.

My Cost: 365 (signup fee + trombone) vs 929.46 -> Savings of 564.46.
Heck - where I worked back in college, the rental would have cost around the same, you could have done exactly what you did and bought a used trombone from the very same store for around $300 as well.  Rental program is a cash cow because most people don't think beyond "what do I have to spend today to walk out of here with a horn".  Anyone who spent more than 5 minutes looking around the store first would be like "I think I'll just buy one of those $300 ones right there."

Save money in the future - make sure kid doesn't sit around tapping the end of the slide into the floor.  Eventually, enough flattening will happen that it has to be fixed, and it is tempting to do because there is usually a rubber bumper on the end and there's a lot of sitting around not doing much in band rehearsal.

I know right? When I first read the terms of the trial/rent I was puzzled: "How on earth can the music store make any money out of this deal?". But then I realized that many parents would simply not bother to look for a used one because "is just 35/mo"!

Thanks for the pro-tip! I'll let my kid know for sure.
It is an interesting business model.  You might pay ~$300-400 for a brand new instrument from a reputable manufacturer, and you're going to sell this thing to a family who is going to give it to a child for $25 / month.  They can return it at any time, they can swap it for another instrument at any time, they can trade it in towards an upgraded instrument at any point in the future, they can ask you to fix it for free unless in all but the worst cases of intentional damage.  If you couldn't stretch those payments out for 3-4 years minimum, there's no way this would work at all.  So the keys are

1) make life as easy as you can for the band director - you have someone visit them at school at least weekly and deliver anything the program needs at near or sometimes below cost.  Helps if this person is an ex-band director themselves.
2) those returned instruments - you have to fix them and clean them, but you can do that pretty cheap - then you rent em again to next years crop at a slightly lower purchase price or rent
3) when the instrument gets banged up enough that its hard to charge a "nearly-new" price, you sell them for around what you paid for them years ago. 
4) don't make the availability of item 3 obvious to most people - engage them at their school and not the store if at all possible. 
5) Here's one the store learned while I was working there - don't incentivize your sales staff to sell the $300 used stuff before the rentals.  Seriously - we were on commission and there was a small fee we'd earn to go through the lengthy rental process and send a customer on their way.  But we'd be paid 10 times that for selling a used horn, and it was a much simpler transaction for us - I know my go-to move was "well, you know the rental program is great and I'm happy to help you with that if you want, but I've got this trumpet over here I can give you a deal on and you'd break even in a year or so . . ."

Basically, the whole thing is really hard to get started, but once that machine is humming, a good rental program just spews out money.  Not that it can't come crashing down - losing market share can be a real problem, so you've got to stay on top of what your competitors are doing and make changes when needed.

* - not the standard professional instruments generally speaking, but mid-grade.  That was always fun when someone misunderstood or had been lied to about that and wanted to upgrade to a Bach Strad or similar and you had to say "we can't do that - we can sell you the trumpet, and we have 6 months same as cash financing available, but we don't rent those  . . ."  Actually far, far cheaper to just buy those than anything similar to the rental program, but always a tense conversation with someone who expected this to be a zero-cost trip to the store and it turns out that to get what they want is a 4-figure trip to the music store.
« Last Edit: October 13, 2017, 09:26:08 AM by dandarc »

MaybeBabyMustache

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #9944 on: October 13, 2017, 10:42:36 AM »
On vacation, so different frugality options than normal, but:
-Hotel provides "free" fitness classes & experiences. (Free = included in resort fee). Did a meditation class, yoga class, & free canoeing/snorkeling yesterday. Saw huge turtles!
-Going to three fitness classes this morning. I love that it's like a fitness retreat + a vacation
-Bought groceries at Costco, and have been eating breakfast/drinking coffee, and eating lunch in our room. Eating out for dinner.
-Hotel sent a free bottle of champagne for our anniversary. Lovely indulgence.
-Brought our own wine, laundry soap, & other expensive things via checked bag. Checked bag was free due to credit card through the airline.
-Ate first meal at Costco food court. Unintentionally, but had skipped breakfast & lunch. Lunch for under $6 - not bad. ;-)

It's not been all frugality. We had martinis at the Four Seasons yesterday, and watched the sun set. Stunning!

Linda_Norway

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #9945 on: October 13, 2017, 11:18:33 AM »
Normally I buy bags of fresh spinach and wack it into the freezer to make sure it doesn't die before we have tome to eat it. Today I compared prices between frozen and fresh spinach. The frozen costs only 20% of the fresh. So from now on I will buy the frozen spinach. There is also much more volumn in the bags. We just ate a whole bag and it was a lot. Next time we will manage with half a pack per meal. As I buy spinach quite often, almost weekly, this might make an inpact. It was about damn time I realized this...

Bracken_Joy

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #9946 on: October 13, 2017, 12:08:43 PM »
Linda- similar thing here. Frequent veggie choices make a big difference =)

We loooove shaved brussel sprouts. Trader Joe's sells pre-shaved sprouts, which works out to like $3.50/lb. Costco sells whole brussel sprouts for ~$2.30/lb. I now buy them whole, and shave them in my food processor. Since we can easily eat one of the bags per week (2lbs? 3lbs?), this adds up over time.

Probably with the sprouts, and then putting up sooooo much salsa this summer, and making out own hummus (mostly) now, we've finally reached the break even on that food processor. Pure profit from here on out =)

mustachepungoeshere

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #9947 on: October 13, 2017, 05:04:39 PM »
Cheering at not being lambasted for my vanilla confession!

I just went through the tub of airline/hotel toiletries - again. (When he gets home from a trip I throw the unopened kits in there, then sort them out when I get a chance.)

I put aside some Bvlgari cologne, aftershave balm and lotion for a friend.

Piled up a stash of brushes, combs, etc, for a women's charity.

At some point he's been given a tub of fancy bath salts (I googled them and they retail for $55). I'm going to make them part of our Christmas present to my mum.

Hmmm, this looks like more of a decluttering post than a what small thing post.

But I also organised all the free toothbrushes, razors, soap and deodorant which saves me a small fortune each year.

jeromedawg

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #9948 on: October 13, 2017, 05:09:34 PM »
Not today but about a month ago I donated my old 93 Camry (it had broken down on us on the way to a friends over an hour away). That effectively has forced us to become a one-car family. I wasn't really driving the Camry much anyway since I WFH but it does feel slightly liberating not to have another car taking up space in the garage.

alewpanda

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #9949 on: October 14, 2017, 12:09:13 AM »
Thought I would need to purchase paint for our front door (it was all scratched up).  Turned out we had the last of the quart from the previous owners in the garage, and it was still good!  Brushed a thin coat over it and still have leftovers.

Resisted the chocolate bar while I was at the store today.

Stretched dinner the other night by using half the amount of meat and clearance noodles. 

By using a 5.00 off 25.00 coupon and by purchasing specific items that were cheaper at the family dollar store than they are at our local grocer, I paid 22.00 for what would have cost me 35.00 normally!  The family dollar doesn't have fresh foods and many items are not the quality of kind of food that I would normally buy.  However, toilet paper is cheaper there, they had some canned fruit in juice on clearance for 80 cents a can (name brand even) and there were a handful of household/misc canned items that I needed that I would have bought for more at the grocer if I had been there. 

Babysat for a friend today.  That meant hanging out at home with a really easy to watch preteen, eating at home, doing some odd jobs and cleaning, and hanging out outside.  Easy day. 

Finally emptied and cleaned out our standing freezer.  Posted it for sale online.  Hoping for a quick sale!