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Saving Money Secrets

Share your best advice for living on a budget and stretching your dollars.

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Please note these are member-submitted secrets and are not reviewed by SparkPeople's health experts for accuracy. If you feel a secret is inappropriate, please click the "Report Inappropriate Secret" on the secret's page and our staff will review it.

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Me First

I have a savings account, and money goes in every time I get paid. Over time, I've increased the amount I deposit. The real trick is to save more than you think you can. After saving for years but not having as much as I thought I should, I challenged myself to save a certain amount from every paycheck - no matter what.

When you have savings to fall back on, you don't worry about paying your bills. Less stress leads to a happier life.

- Submitted by LCATTLEYA 4/13/2014 in Saving Money | 0 Comments

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Grocery Gift Cards to Me!

I learned from the government shutdown that a sudden pay loss can be crippling to a family. When the dust settled and the paychecks resumed I bought a gift card from the grocery stores I frequent. Each week I add $10 to one of them. Should an emergency occur, I have some back up to be able to feed my family.

- Submitted by DUSTYPRAIRIE 1/5/2014 in Saving Money | 6 Comments

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Eat Real Food

If you go to the grocery store you may notice the cheapest way to buy a potato is in a ten pound bag. A slightly more expensive way is one by one. If you buy them frozen like fries or hash browns they become more expensive still. The more processed a food item gets the more $$ per pound you pay. The most expensive way to buy a potato? Probably a potato chip - so save money by buying the least processed

- Submitted by KUMARIDESILVA 12/26/2013 in Saving Money | 0 Comments

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Extending Sales at the Supermarket

Shop late on the last day of the sale week, when sale items are likely to be in short supply. Buy all remaining packages of what you want, then go to customer service and get a raincheck., so you can buy again when the item is NOT on sale. Also, late in the day, you are more likely to find distressed packages which are - or can be - marked way down. I can get as much as 80-85% OFF by ASKING for it. They'd be throwing the package away within hours!

- Submitted by MI-ELLKAYBEE 4/13/2012 in Saving Money | 0 Comments

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Fast way to save!

Each pay period I take 1 (one) of each denomination and deposit it into savings BEFORE I leave the window. Ex. 1-$1 bill, 1-$5 bill, 1-$10 bill etc...it adds up fast! emoticon

- Submitted by PK2H2000 8/25/2010 in Saving Money | 1 Comment

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Vacation funds from spare change.

I never give exact change. I might dole out the pennies to only get silver coins back, but never any more than that. Every couple of days or so, I transfer the change from my purse to an opaque jar on my shelf, and when it gets too full, I roll the change and put it in a box in the closet. When vacation time rolls around, this becomes my spending money, and by saving all my change for a year, I end up with $300-$500 bucks I didn't even feel like I was saving.

- Submitted by NIGHTWISHFAE 3/13/2014 in Saving Money | 0 Comments

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People Laugh at Me because ...

I have a Trac Phone! I have no bill, no contract and pay $19.99 every 60 days.

- Submitted by LISASGONNADOIT 2/20/2014 in Saving Money | 5 Comments

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No cellphone bill monthly

I got a pre payed phone T-Mobil loaded with 100 $ for the year(1000 min.)I can text or call even international .If I need more min. I add more. I do not have a cell bill monthly in the last 3 years and don't missed.

- Submitted by ALINA1969 1/14/2014 in Saving Money | 1 Comment

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Cheap Warming Tray No Electricity and Party Helper

A metal cupcake pan bottom of stainless kitchen sink...put a few tea lights in pan. Space candles as needed.
Put a metal cookie tray that overlaps the sink...leaving air gaps along sides. The tray got warm pretty quickly and it was perfect for keeping our mugs of coffee/cocoa warm in a cold room when the power went out. The tea lights last for hours. CAUTION: Tray can get HOT depending on number of candles and an open flame is a fire hazard...the more candles, the more heat.
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- Submitted by JACEYLEE 1/8/2014 in Saving Money | 0 Comments

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Drink Tap Water

Bottled water is so expensive. The tap water is safe to drink in almost all areas of the country. (Check the government reports on your local water tests). I keep a jug of tap water in the refrigerator so it's always cold and I use lots of ice. I always carry a refillable plastic bottle of ice water whenever I step foot out of the house. Water is included with our rent, so I'm saving "buckets" of money by drinking tap water instead of bottled water.

- Submitted by GREEN-EYED-LADY 6/12/2013 in Saving Money | 7 Comments
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