10 June 2015

5 Things You Pay For...but Maybe Shouldn't

As I get learn and get more into saving money and simple living, I am starting to see different things we spend money on that maybe we don't really actually need. Everybody in life will have different priorities and that's okay. But I guess I am starting to become aware of where we spend money on things perhaps we actually don't need to pay for.

1. Cable/Gym memberships
Growing up we had cable, but I only ever found myself to watch a small handful of channels (mainly old movies). When Jim and I got married, I was amazed how crazy expensive it was to have cable, especially if we don't even watch half of it. Netflix has done just fine for us, although they need a MUCH better selection of old movies and musicals.

Gym memberships were the same thing. Our town had a Planet Fitness and at $10 a month seemed reasonable. The only problem with that is you actually have to use the membership. We never did, so once we began following Dave Ramsey's principles, the gym membership was the first thing to go. It was crazy because to even cancel the darn thing was expensive too!? Our apartment complex has a decent work-out room, pool, and I enjoy running outside; all things that don't take extra money from our budget.

2. Internet Router
This one we just learned about. Our Comcast prices aren't great but are not awful either. But we only recently realized that renting our router from the company was costing us an $10 on our monthly bill. Umm heck.no. While its not a crazy huge amount, I am still all for saving where we can.

Double check with your internet provider and see how much they charge you to rent your router. See if you can purchase your own and save some dough.

3. Books/Movies
I LOVE books. Since the new year, I have read almost 30 books. To me, books are like dear, old friends and each one holds special memories attached to it. But over the years, I have seen how much money I have wasted by purchasing brand new books from local bookstores. Since we got married, we live really close to our local library. Now instead of always buying books, I have a running list of books on my phone that I want to check out from the library. This has worked out SO well!

Some of the librarians even know me on a first name basis and they've ordered several books from my request/constant badgering. Same thing with movies! You can rent movies and TV shows from the library for a week at a time for free. I find myself going to the library at least twice a week to either pick a new load of books or return them.
Go make friends with your local librarians! If you're a book lover like me, its a great tool to use!

4. Bread
I certainly do not claim to be Suzy Homemaker, but I am slowly getting into making our own version of different things so we don't have to buy them. Bread is one of them. This recipe for bread is the bomb dot com. Really! If you're a lover of carbs, check out this book.

5. Cleaning Supplies
I am still slowly easing my way into this one. Reading more on natural living and simplicity has increased my interest in doing things ourselves. My two favorite blogs for inspiration and lots on information on this topic are here and here. On the horizon, I want to make more homemade cleaning supplies and take a crack at making laundry detergent.

What are some creative ways you try to stretch your dollar? Are there things in your life you pay for that maybe you don't need to? Do share! I am always on the look-out for new ideas :)

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  1. All 5 are things we do too. Are you also in the habit if requesting the library but books you want to read but they don't have? Last year I requested Notes from a blue bike and Something other than God. Free to me, taking up no space in my minimalist house and now available to the community!

    1. Also, I think you should check out Miss Minimalist--I think you might get into her ideas in this phase of growth you're in :-)


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