Families are spending a great deal of money these days and it is not only because of skyrocketing prices. One of the reasons families are spending more money is because the person who is managing the household finances is not keeping track of how much money they are spending or what they are spending money on. The fact is that families can cut costs in quite a few
areas if they make a concerted effort to review their expenses.  This will free up a great deal of money that they can use to pay down debt or put into their savings.

For example, most families can reduce their food budget if they shop more wisely. Another area that they can cut is their dining out budget.  Most families spend a great deal of money buying food outside of the home.

According to a recent consumer survey, the whole family should try carrying lunch to work or school at least one day of the week. Even if one member of the family carries lunch to work one day of the week, savings is estimated to be about $400.00 per year and this amount will double or triple if more than one member of the family does this.

Housing is another major expense. One way that you can reduce your housing expense is to look into refinancing or find a lower
interest rate or even pay off your mortgage in a shorter period of time.  If you cannot alter your mortgage payment, enquire into paying a little extra amount each month or sometimes on renewal you can pay off a lump sum payment.  If you do any of these things, you will pay your mortgage off at a faster rate.

Another way you can save is to take a look at what you are spending on utilities. Your can save on utilities by having your insulation or weather stripping checked to see if they need to be updated. Plugging all the leaks where heat is escaping will save your tons of money.  Also, you need to keep your air conditioner and furnace maintained.  Another way you can save money is to turn down the thermostat at night or when your family is away from home.

Another expense that you can cut back on is transportation. You are well aware that if you have a vehicle that it is very costly to operate and maintain considering the price of gasoline and maintenance. To cut back on transportation costs, you might want to consider carpooling with your family members if they have their own vehicles. Instead of using separate vehicles to run errands, you can combine your trips to cut down on expenses.  You can also save on gasoline by taking advantage of discounts and be watchful of gas prices. You can also save money on your transportation costs by ensuring that your vehicle is consistently maintained so that your vehicle can achieve it potential gas mileage.

You can also save money by choosing the right bank for you. Choose a bank that does not charge fees for every transaction.  If you belong to a credit union, most transactions are free so you might want to join a credit union to save on fees. Paying your bills electronically and using a debit card will also trim your banking fees and not to mention savings on postage.  Avoiding banking fees will save you tons of money.

Another major savings can be obtained from reducing credit card costs. Get a credit card with low interest rate or one that has low fees or no fees at all. There are many credit cards companies so what you need to do is to shop around until you find one that suits you.

Health care costs is another things that sucks a lot of money out of your pocket so you should take advantage of offers and programs that will bring considerable savings to you. To save on health care costs, you can take advantage of your employer’s health care plans.  Many employers have health care spending accounts that employees can take advantage of to save on dental,
non-prescription medications and vision costs.

Review your insurance policies to save money. To save on your insurance rates, do comparisons of insurance policies to see if you can save on house, vehicle, or personal insurance. Another thing you can do to save money on insurance is to increase the deductible level or use the same insurance company for all of your policies. Let your insurance company or companies know
that you are trying to get a better rate on your insurance policies and they might try to offer you a better rate to keep you.

Communications is another major expense for families because they have to pay for cell phones, TV cable providers and internet access. What you really need to do about this is to review all of these services and see where you can make cuts. You will save money if you purchase your communications from the same company. This way you can bundle all services for
a lower payment.

The internet has made it so easy to do comparison shopping that this is something that you can do for most of your purchases.  You will also not have to spend money on gas since you will be sitting in front of your computer.

In essence, to take control of your spending, you need to review all your family’s expenditures to see where you can cut costs if you are on a frugal budget. You will see that by making a few changes, you will reap considerable savings in your household budget. With all of the money that you save, you will be able to pay for things like vacations or big ticket items for your home.


Filed under: How to Live Frugally

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