Some people pinch pennies, others take it to the next thrifty level
I was watching the Discovery/TLC show Extreme Cheapskates a couple of days ago and thought I would share some ideas I learned from them. I also thought I would share a couple of my mostly original money saving ideas I came up with while watching the show. I know some of these are not old or original ideas, but most are kinda funny.
You are probably not using more than any two of these ideas right now mainly because most of them are probably borderline ridiculous or just plain dangerous to your health, but that is neither here nor there. This list is about you being entertained while at the same time possibly getting a money saving idea or two...enjoy.
Money saving ideas that you might not have thought of before
1. Did you notice someone didn’t clean their plate during your restaurant dining experience? Ask the people around your table if they want their leftovers. If they are willing to part with them just put them in your to-go box. Always remember, you should never let good food go bad.
2. Ketchup and mustard running low? Go into random eating establishments and ask them if they mind coughing up some condiment packs. You can squeeze those packs into your current containers instead of buying new ones.
3. Why re-buy paper towels? You can reuse those suckers by washing them in the sink and then (carefully) drying them on a line hanging in your kitchen.
4. Do you dumpster dive? Take that dumpster dive to the next level and make it a dumpster plunge. You need to dig past the dirty diapers and spoiled food if you are going to get the real good stuff.
5. Dull razor? Sharpen it on the striking part of a box of matches. In the chance that your razor somehow catches fire, you are probably already in front of a sink where you can put it out.
6. Think your toothpaste tube is empty after squeezing out every last drop? Negative! You need to cut that bad boy in half and dip your toothbrush inside of it for another week until it is empty. You could literally save tens of cents a year by doing this.
7. What to save $5 a month while living on the edge? Buy packages of two-ply toilet paper and spend 8 hours separating the plys apart. You can double your toilet paper while cutting the needed barrier between you and your bathroom business in half.
Quote : “Toilet paper is a lot like life in general. The closer you get to the end, the faster it seems to go”
8. Do you have clothing that has been soiled with unsightly stains? Simply donate your clothing to the thrift store and let them do all of the dirty work getting that stubborn stain out. You can then repurchase the article of clothing for far cheaper than what a dry cleaner would have charged you.
9.Do you only have $10.00 to spend on an anniversary gift? You should spend most of your entire $10.00 anniversary gift budget on gas for your vehicle. This allows you to collect multiple gifts from several dumpsters, backs of stores and abandoned vehicles instead of getting a small gift at the store. However, you can still round out the anniversary gift finding spree by stopping by your local 99% Off Store and getting your special someone something nice. You should easily be able to find a couple of gifts for under $ 0.50. A $0.10 box of non-iced animal crackers (only if she loves animals), and a $0.15 bottle of expired seltzer water so you can share the bubbly. It could go a long way to making him/her feel special. If you want up the ante and give him/her a card with the bundle of gifts, simply cross out the words of an old card and “repurpose” it with the anniversary gift.
10. Did people throw rice at you on your wedding? Wasted food alert! You can scoop up all of that thrown rice and put it in your pockets. Later, just give that dirty ass rice a good cleaning under the faucet for about 2 seconds and it will be good as new once you cook it.
11. Save all of that previously unwanted cereal-ish junk at the bottom of every box of cereal in a large plastic bag. Give it a good smash with your fists and...POW! You have just created flour that can be used to make baked goods.
12. Save money on your water bill and do it the Old West way. Fill your tub up with hot water and everyone in the house gets a 5 minute bath taking timer to get that grime off. If you utilize this water saving technique, it is a must that all babies be washed first so they are not accidentally thrown out with the bath water.
13. Tired of pulling those two plys off of your toilet paper and then putting them back on rolls? Or are you tired of buying toilet paper all together? You could cut up old shirts and fabric scraps and turn them into squares to stack next to your toilet. Simply put the used, er, TP in a small receptacle and dump them in the ole wash when you need a refill.
14. Want to save money on cooking for your family? Join a babysitting club and let the parents watching your kids do the cooking for them. You get the win-win situation of not having them in the house and you don’t have to spend a dime feeding them dinner. Sure you might have to cook for other kids sometimes as well, but that is probably weeks away.
15. Want to save money on groceries? Head to your local salvage store and get that food at half price. You get the added fun of only getting food that is expired. Think of it like gambling. You can save some money on food (winning), but you chance explosive expulsion of your meal a couple of hours later (losing).
16. Tired of paying for your salads? Simply forage for your greens in the nearest open field. You can often find tasty greens that haven’t been sprayed with any weed killing chemicals.
17. Do you want to save some extra money, but don’t know how to get started? Several times during the year go on a “fiscal fast” and spend no money on anything for an entire week.
Important : Make sure you have enough food saved up for the entire week or this fiscal fast will turn into a real fast very quickly.
18. Do you have a vacuum cleaner that still uses those nasty old disposable bags? What you might not know is that bags are usually made very well and can be reused several times. You simply need to take those bags outside and pick out the dirt and hair with an old pencil and VOILÀ! An almost new vacuum bag.
19. Driving an economy vehicle can cost you upwards of $0.20 to $0.25 per mile. Instead, simply walk or ride a bike for your short distant jaunts. Over the course of several decades you will have saved yourself a mint. You can use that mint for your retirement.
20. Completely broke but need something to eat? Get on your bike and hit up every coin operated payphone (if you can find any), car wash and laundromat in your area. If you look hard enough you are bound to scrounge up a few quarters for your dinner.
21. Save some money on meat by only buying the heads, tails, hearts, intestines, liver and kidneys of your butchered animal of choice. Sure they aren’t the choices cuts of meat, but it is still meat and will taste okay if seasoned correctly.
22. Tired of buying those uber expensive S.O.S. Pads? There is a better and cheaper way. Simply make your used aluminum foil into a large ball and put it into a mesh onion bag. Next, tie off the end of the bag with a sturdy used rubber band and you have just made yourself an instant poor man’s pot scrubber.
23. Have expensive taste in wine but hate the cost? Buy a couple of $40 bottles of wine once every 10 years and keep refilling them with a less expensive box wine version over and over again. The box wine doesn’t taste much different than the expensive stuff and your guests will never know the difference.
24. If your salary just doesn’t seem to stretch far enough, look into extreme bartering as a way to make ends meet. Want some breakfast donuts? Trade them for a poem. Want to get 50% off your lunch at a local cafe? Sing a song for the discount. Need a haircut but Uncle Sam trimmed your salary? Offer to take out their trash and clean up around the place as payment for the cut. The sky's the limit with extreme bartering and as an added bonus, you will be known as a legendary cheapskate by almost everyone in town.
25. Save money on furniture by driving around your subdivision the evening before morning trash pickup. People usually would rather have their unwanted couches, chairs and tables go to a good home than have them hauled away as landfill fodder. You will be surprised to know that people often put out quality items knowing someone will snatch them up before the garbage man arrives in the morning.
26. If the elastic is going out on your shorts it must mean that you are in need of a new pair, right? Wrong! Simply fold over the old elastic and use an office binder clip to stretch out the life of your stretched out shorts.
27. Are you someone who hates shelling out hard earned money for toiletries? You can join several different mailing lists and sample sites that will ship you free trial sized versions of their items. There are enough sites doing this that you could possibly never have to pay for deodorant again. Although you might have a bit of trouble getting enough free feminine sample products if you are a female and might have to purchase those at the store.
28. If you don’t have a washer and dryer you can save tons of money by washing your clothes when you shower instead of going to laundrymat. Make sure each article has laundry soap on it, line the bottom of your tub with your dirty clothing and kick your feet around while showering to imitate the action of the washing machine agitator. After your shower is completed, make sure each piece of clothing has been thoroughly rinsed. Once rinsed, hang them up to dry using hangers on your shower rod and other hooks in your bathroom.
29. Need to save for a nice vacation? Do you live close to a university? They probably have several clinical studies going where they will pay you money to be a human guinea pig. If you are willing to be a participant in some of the studies that would be considered “dangerous” to your continued living, the monetary payoff can be all the more sweeter. You will just have to live with hand cramps after signing the 10,000 page waiver the university will make you sign first.
30. Tired of spending money on those expensive robot car washes? You can wash the majority of your vehicle with the squeegee most gas stations provide at the pump. If your vehicle is especially dirty, just clean half of it today and the other half the next time you need gas.
31. Want to save money on cups? You can reuse old yogurt cups. They will survive being washed in the dishwasher on the top rack. If you think about it, there are many containers that are thrown away on a daily basis that could be used as cups. We throw away spaghetti sauce jars, cottage cheese cups, salsa jars, mayonnaise jars and candle jars just to name a few.
32. Are you are looking for someone special that is as cheap as you? You could utilize one of the several free dating websites available on the web. Just stay away from the people who like shopping, fine dining, going on vacations and those who are high maintenance. You need to go after the ones that like to do the free (or mostly free) stuff like staying at home, going on long walks, reading books, camping and staring at the stars. Find out how many things you can do together without spending a dime.
33. Do you hate flushing expensive water down the drain after urinating? Do you also have the desire to grow a nice healthy compost heap for gardening? You can kill two birds with one stone by urinating in a plastic bottle instead of flushing your toilet. Once a day take your pee bottle outside and pour it on your compost heap. You will be cutting down on your water bill as well as helping out your garden. If you happen to be outside while you have the desire to urinate, you can cut out the middleman by simply walking over to your heap and letting it flow.
The meat of the potatoes
You might think that you are being overly frugal or a cheapskate, but chances are you are nothing more than an amature at saving money. There are folks out there who will go to extremes such as not washing their clothing for weeks or renting out their children to either save or make a nickel. If you have been reading some of the better blogs that specialize in personal finance, chances are you have learned a thing or two about saving money. The problem is you simply have a long way to go before ascending to the zenith of cheapskate status. Yes, I of course am referring to The Cheapest Man In The World.