13 Simple Ways to Save Money in Your Everyday Life

By Myles Leva


Last Updated: January 25, 2022


Financial problems and solutions are often viewed at a very high level.

But the big picture in individual finance is just the summary of every little decision you make. It is ultimately much easier to improve your finances one tiny step at a time.

 So, if that's the case, what are some ways you can actually start saving some money? 


What is the Easiest Way to Save Money?

If you’re serious about saving money, you will need both a comprehensive budget plan and many smaller plans for each area of your budget.

Starting a budget and following through on it is not the easiest way to save money. The psychological barriers to gratification, especially instant gratification and envy, are hard to overcome. But small, conscious changes to your day-to-day routines come with far fewer barriers.

Here, we will go into the easiest ways to save money.


Clever Ways to Save Money

Here are some generic money saving tips for anyone trying to save some extra money.


1. Dump Brand Names

Brand-name clothing items are great, but only when you don’t care about the money you’re spending.

There are generic clothing items that follow the same trends and still look great. If you already have a brand name item for every part of your wardrobe, any further spending on it is simply gratuitous.


2. Save Automatically

Following budgets can be hard. But forcing yourself to budget is surprisingly easy.

You can have money transferred automatically from your chequing to your savings. You just need to set up these automatic transfers. Flat dollar amounts may not always be possible. But you can set up your direct deposits to automatically siphon a percentage to savings.

This forces you to save a portion of every paycheque.


3. Don’t Buy Coffee Out

Yes, this one shows up on every list, but there's a reason for that! That daily morning Starbucks is incredibly expensive when you compare it to making coffee at home.

Instant coffee may not be your thing, but if you drink coffee almost daily, you will easily save long-term by buying coffee bags and brewing at home. (Not to mention cutting back on all those take out cups.) 

The average morning take out coffee will run you about $2.00-2.70. 

Making a Keurig at home will run you about .47 per cup, (not counting the machine) or a regular cup from ground or whole about .21 per cup. That adds up in a hurry!


4. Use Libraries or Used Bookstores

You don’t necessarily need to buy books online.

Before doing so, try checking your local library’s directory, or check out the local used bookstores near you.

Libraries offer a vast selection of books, audiobooks, and even videos for free. Wherever possible, it’s sensible to save money and use free public resources.

Used bookstores offer titles that have often only been read once, and are still on the bestseller lists. Often, they will also offer a trade in deal, where you can get store credit for bringing in old books you don't need and use it to get new books.

You'll also be supporting a local business instead of a massive corporation. 


5. Revisit Insurance Plans

Canadians pay ridiculously high sums on insurance.

We in fact pay the highest amounts in the OECD. This makes the need to regularly revisit insurance even more pertinent. To make matters worse, we’re talking about auto, home, and liability insurance, all of which are relatively high in Canada.

Switching insurance plans, even without sacrificing much coverage, can easily save you some money every month. If circumstances have changed since you last gained insurance in one area, it’s even likelier you can save by comparison shopping again.


6. Refinance your Mortgage

Your circumstances have likely changed since you secured your first mortgage.

If your income or credit score is higher since you first got a mortgage, you may be able to save quite a bit. Try looking for mortgage refinancing if you want to save some more money. Even a fraction of a percent translates into hundreds of dollars when it comes to the cost of a home.


7. Monitor Utilities

Do you regularly track your heating, cooling, and water expenses?

There are often opportunities to save, simply through a few small changes. In some cases, your home’s furnace or AC may not be so efficient, while in others it’s a question of poor insulation. Either way, small adjustments can add up to hundreds of dollars annually.


8. Prep for Grocery Shopping

Impulse buying can easily occur with groceries.

So, before going out to the grocery store, try getting in the habit of taking inventory of what you currently have. Make sure you take what you currently have into account for your meal plans and for your next trip to the grocery store.

This can save you money while also reducing waste, which is good for everyone.

Read this next for more money saving ideas - 4 Budgeting Tips to Help You Save More Money


Frugal Tips to Save Money on a Tight Budget

Sometimes, a very tight budget can restrict your ability to carry out the above ideas.

But even on a tight budget, there are great habits and tips you can use to make every cent count.


9. Cancel Subscriptions

Automatic subscription payments likely take a larger chunk of your budget than you realize.

One study found that one-third of Americans are paying for subscription-based services without even knowing it. Look into your recurring payments on all cards for automated payments. Cut the payments that you don’t truly need to make.


10. Get Creative About Gifts

The global gift card industry was worth over $619 billion in 2019.

Spending on gift products can be high because people are in a rush to get a gift that looks nice but without the time and effort. By getting more creative about your gifts, you can make a more sincere impression on friends and family. You will, of course, also save money in the process.


11. Save All Surprise/Unexpected Income

If you receive money from surprise gifts, benefits, bonuses, or anything else, deposit it into savings immediately.

If you’re on a tight budget, there’s no reason to be liberal with money you didn’t expect to possess anyway.


12. Try a Spending Freeze Challenge

If you have things to save up for in a hurry, why not try a spending freeze challenge?

These challenges help people save quickly in a short time with an extremely limited budget. It won’t be fun to follow through on, but you can certainly have fun challenging yourself. If you’re in dire financial waters, even a two-week spending freeze may push you back above water.


13. Sell Everything

Do you really need money now? Do you have anything lying around your home that you don’t use regularly? If your answer to both questions is “yes”, then it’s time for a yard sale!

Well, you don’t necessarily need a “yard sale”, but it’s time to start selling your unused items somewhere. If you haven’t taken inventory for a long time, you may even be surprised by how much you can make.


You Can Save Money! 

You likely didn't get into debt in one day, so you shouldn't expect to get out of it in one. 

Step by step, if you are willing to commit to saving even a little bit of extra money, it can help relieve any financial stress you are facing. If it helps, write down your goals and put them somewhere you can see them every day. It can help keep you motivated and on track! 

You can do this. 

Photo by Karolina Grabowska from Pexels


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