November 27, 2016

Top 20 Ways My Family Spends Less Money

More and more we need to be mindful of earning, spending and saving money wisely.  We've done quite a few things on the homestead to save money.  The family is quite used to this pattern of doing things ourselves.  This sometimes means we have to wait longer for things, like a day for the laundry to dry or pick and clean vegetables before cooking, spending ten minutes finding deals with price matching.  But in turn, we get exercise, fresh air, organic food and more time together as a family.  With some things we save time, like no more waiting at the garage for car maintenance and not spending hours mowing the lawn.  Here is a list of the top 20 ways my family spends less money:
  1. Main family vehicle is compact size and fuel efficient.
  2. Canceled satellite TV and use Roku to watch Netflix and You Tube.
  3. Installed wood stove ourselves, burn some wood from own property and don't use propane furnace.
  4. Share one cell phone for family, no data plan and don't upgrade after contract.
  5. Hang dry all laundry, saves electricity and humidifies indoor air in winter.
  6. Price match groceries.
  7. Cook most meals and limit delivery, drive-thru food orders and eating out, even on vacation.
  8. Keep winter and summer tires on separate rims and change ourselves and do oil changes at home.
  9. Take showers after 7pm for lower time of use rates, wash laundry on weekends for lower rates.
  10. Grow about 4 months worth of our own fresh vegetables (peas, artichokes, potatoes, cucumbers, swiss chard, kale, turnips, tomatoes, green beans, carrots, beets, ground cherries, raspberries, herbs).
  11. Eat eggs from our own hens with feed supplemented with food scraps and backyard foraging.
  12. Use hen waste and kitchen scraps for free garden fertilizer.
  13. Cook using toaster oven, steamer, Crockpot and on wood stove to avoid using large oven.
  14. Mow only part of lawn to save gas (and protect wildlife habitat).
  15. Close curtains at night to reduce heat loss.
  16. Air condition only one room in house over summer saves electricity.
  17. Work from home part-time saves gas.
  18. Groom dog at home.
  19. Low cost family entertainment: hiking, swimming, fishing, skating, gardening, biking, playing with pets. 
  20. Turn off lights when not in room.