The following are several secrets, simple ones at that, which have enabled many people to increase their savings.
1. Opt for generic prescriptions. You’ll pay enormous sums to buy many branded prescription drugs. In many cases this cannot be avoided as these are the only drugs that can help your condition. For all other medications, generic prescriptions may do. With generics you receive equivalent help and you’ll pay only a fraction of what the top drugs cost. Ask your doctor about generic equivalents.
2. Drive with care. Most of us complain about gas prices and rightly so. With summer prices topping $4 per gallon, the increased cost wreaks havoc with our budgets. You can optimize your fuel economy by avoiding jackrabbit starts and by keeping your tires properly inflated. One of the better fuel saving methods is using cruise control especially when you’re on the open road.
3. Refinance your mortgage. If you have not refinanced your home in more than five years, you may be missing out on lower interest rates. This can be a good time to get out of a higher interest rate home loan to a lower loan. You might also consider opting for a shorter term loan especially if you would like to shave several years from your loan.
4. Get an energy audit. Your home is as efficient as it will be, right? After all, you have new windows, energy efficient siding and recently had your HVAC system tuned. Well, there are each good efforts to help you contain your energy costs, but there may be additional ways for you to save. You can find out how by asking your utility company to provide an energy audit, typically a low-cost or even free evaluation of your home and its energy consumption. Learn ways you can reduce energy even more and save more.
5. Save on your communication costs. Do you still need a landline? If not, ditch it. Many households are doing just fine with cell phones. Speaking of cell phones, shop around for a better plan especially if you have several people in your family with phones. For your Internet needs, bundle this cost with your cable coverage to save more money.
6. Borrow books, don’t buy. E-books have caught on as the price you pay is less than half that of hard copies. Even so, you’re still shelling out some serious cash, money that you may not have. Instead of buying *any* books, head to the library to check out your favorite titles. After all, it isn’t called the *free* public library for no reason.
7. Keep the change. If you can save money from every paycheck, then you’re in a good place. You can also save money here and there by saving and collecting your change. Then, yearly, count your change and take it to the bank, depositing your added savings that otherwise might have been squandered.
All seven suggestions may not be so secret to you, but collectively can benefit you tremendously. Avoid the high cost of everything by comparing prices and looking for additional ways to save.
See Also — How to Save Money Toward Your Next Car.
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