Intro: Keeping Household on a Budget
In this instructable, I would like to share some of the approaches to reduce the cost of purchase and the regular expenditure with minimal changes to the normal routine.
For the budget contest, there are so many saving ideas that can be thought off and I would like to share those that I follow daily.
Step 1: Ways to Reduce Your Electricity, Water, Telephone and Internet Bills
Below are the ways that we follow in my house regularly to cut monthly electricity, water, telephone and Internet bills,
Ways to save electricity and water
1) Unplug all the unused (not in use) gadgets that are plugged in.
2) Replace regular electric appliances with energy-efficient models and Use energy- efficient light bulbs.
3) Check for water leaks in the kitchen and bathrooms and fix them as soon as possible.
4) Running heavy power consumption equipment (such as dish washer, washer/dryer ) in the off peak time (Lower rate period of the day).
5) Run the dish washer, washer/dryer on full load. (avoid half loads)
6) It's important to make sure your house isn't releasing too much air-conditioned air during the summer or heated air during the winter. If you have cracks in the frames of your windows, under your doors, in your houses basement or foundation, in the attic, or anywhere else in your home, you may be leaking electricity and money. so we make sure those are fixed and maintained.
Ways to save telephone and Internet,
1) Use free mobile phone apps(BlackBerry Messenger, Face Time, Google Hangouts, Skype.. etc) that can work over internet to call or send messages to other phones than using the mobile provider's talk and text plan.
2) Disconnect the devices that are not in use from the home internet.
Step 2: Ways to Save in Grocery Shopping
Saving in grocery shopping is not as tricky as it sounds. Each product in the grocery store will have many brands to choose from but our favorite will be only few (based of our previous experience with the product).
Example: Laundry Detergent.
There are many brands of laundry detergents available but we will have a list of 1-2 brands in our favorite list based on price, quality, quantity etc..,
Once our favorite list is ready for every grocery items that we need, we can concentrate on the below ways to save some money in grocery shopping.
1) Buy your desired products that are on sale.
2) Try stocking up goods/items from a period of 3 months(min) to 1 year(max) depending on the expiry dates of the products. (There is no point stocking up for 3 months and throwing away as its expired )
3) Browse through the flyers before going shopping so that you will get to know what is on sale.
4) Use coupons to reduce the cost of products that are already in sale. You can get coupons from coupon websites, newspaper inserts, in-store coupons etc.
5) Buy seasonal produce that are fresh as well as low in cost.
6) Try to purchase in the shops near you when there is a sale rather than travelling long distance to get the same.
Note : Sales /deals / offers / coupons will always be available.
Step 3: Do It Yourself
Many household items can be done by yourself at home instead of buying it in a super market. To start with, look online / read books / watch TV shows that are related to making things at home and try to implement them at home.
There are many things that can be done at home by our self and few of the items that I usually make it myself at home instead of buying are yogurt,clarified butter,flat bread, greeting cards, cookies,cakes etc....
Instructables itself is a best place to find the DIYprojects that can be used to make different things at home.
Few of my DIY Instructables:
Step 4: Ways to Save in General Merchandise Shopping / Gifts
1) Shopping for the dress on sale or during end of season sales
2) Choose versatile dresses that can be mixed and matched for later use
3) Plan for all the occasions in a year that you will be attending and buy the gifts in a bulk during any sale events or when you find a good deal.
4) Give home made gifts to loved ones which creates a personal touch.
5) Look constantly for online coupons and discounts for electronic items
6) Buy items together in online to save shipping cost
Key for doing this is to take it slowly, don't stress yourself, motivate your family members too. This requires some patience and lot of interest to save money for the household.
I hope this instructable would help those who has just started thinking of ways to keep household on a budget.