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Help! How do you cut back costs?

MommyTutu
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Unread post Thu Oct 10, 2019 8:56 am

We're looking to buy a house within the next year or so. Hubby wants to buy one that costs x amount, I want to go for one that costs about 50% more.

With our current budget, we'll have enough to put 10% towards a house that costs "x" by the end of February, I'd like to bulk that up a great deal. Even if we end up going with one at "x" cost, it would be nice to put more down.

But, here's the issue, I consider myself somewhat frugal. I read tips in magazines or whatever and they always seem extremely obvious. Do you have any tips that are maybe less obvious? I won't fault you if they seem obvious to me, lol, I appreciate input even when it doesn't help!

Also accepting any tips on how to convince hubby to just wait a bit longer and go bigger and better. ;)
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MonarchMom
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Unread post Thu Oct 10, 2019 9:21 am

Take a look at your CC year end summery, most offer this on their website under your account statements. They break down your purchases for the year by category and make it easy to see where you are spending money that you could save instead: restaurants, entertainment, shopping, travel, etc.
So much of what we purchase is not needed, and often goes unused.

Make a decision to stop all but crucial purchases until you are in the new house, including gifts for holidays for DH and yourself until then.
Too Old For This %^&
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Unread post Thu Oct 10, 2019 11:34 am

shop around for car insurance. You don't have to wait for renewal. Make sure you are taking advantage of any cost-cutting discounts there. Reduce the insurance for any old cars you have.
MommyTutu
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Unread post Thu Oct 10, 2019 11:42 am

Okay, admittedly we could definitely cut back on the gift giving. That one has been difficult for me, because gifts are my "love language".
MonarchMom wrote:
Thu Oct 10, 2019 9:21 am
Take a look at your CC year end summery, most offer this on their website under your account statements. They break down your purchases for the year by category and make it easy to see where you are spending money that you could save instead: restaurants, entertainment, shopping, travel, etc.
So much of what we purchase is not needed, and often goes unused.

Make a decision to stop all but crucial purchases until you are in the new house, including gifts for holidays for DH and yourself until then.
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MonarchMom
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Unread post Thu Oct 10, 2019 11:53 am

MommyTutu wrote:
Thu Oct 10, 2019 11:42 am
Okay, admittedly we could definitely cut back on the gift giving. That one has been difficult for me, because gifts are my "love language".
MonarchMom wrote:
Thu Oct 10, 2019 9:21 am
Take a look at your CC year end summery, most offer this on their website under your account statements. They break down your purchases for the year by category and make it easy to see where you are spending money that you could save instead: restaurants, entertainment, shopping, travel, etc.
So much of what we purchase is not needed, and often goes unused.

Make a decision to stop all but crucial purchases until you are in the new house, including gifts for holidays for DH and yourself until then.
Equating gifts with love can be a path to overspending. You can gift someone in so many ways that don't require a purchase - pampering them with time, attention, an outing to a park or beach, doing their chores for them, letting them sleep-in.

I like reading websites like Mr. Money Mustache, who advocates keeping all spending to a minimum so you can splurge on the things in life that give you the most pleasure - usually a great experience vs. more "things".
https://www.mrmoneymustache.com/
MommyTutu
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Unread post Thu Oct 10, 2019 3:44 pm

Thank you! I know you're right, I just find it so difficult!

We spend a fair amount on vacations and such already, but I just really enjoy giving gifts. Especially when I feel like I'm not able to spend enough time with someone. Whether it's that my husband is working long hours or my sister being overseas... there's always some excuse.
MonarchMom wrote:
Thu Oct 10, 2019 11:53 am
MommyTutu wrote:
Thu Oct 10, 2019 11:42 am
Okay, admittedly we could definitely cut back on the gift giving. That one has been difficult for me, because gifts are my "love language".
MonarchMom wrote:
Thu Oct 10, 2019 9:21 am
Take a look at your CC year end summery, most offer this on their website under your account statements. They break down your purchases for the year by category and make it easy to see where you are spending money that you could save instead: restaurants, entertainment, shopping, travel, etc.
So much of what we purchase is not needed, and often goes unused.

Make a decision to stop all but crucial purchases until you are in the new house, including gifts for holidays for DH and yourself until then.
Equating gifts with love can be a path to overspending. You can gift someone in so many ways that don't require a purchase - pampering them with time, attention, an outing to a park or beach, doing their chores for them, letting them sleep-in.

I like reading websites like Mr. Money Mustache, who advocates keeping all spending to a minimum so you can splurge on the things in life that give you the most pleasure - usually a great experience vs. more "things".
https://www.mrmoneymustache.com/
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mcginnisc
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Unread post Tue Oct 15, 2019 8:19 am

A few things we have done:
We went through Financial Peace University to see what it was all about as we were already debt free except for our mortgage..we took away 1 thing that has been vital to our financial success since then. We made a budget. We have always been savers, but also spenders. Once we implemented a budget, we became much better at savings. Dh created me spreadsheets since I handle the finances and they have been awesome for me. One of them is the monthly budget that I can duplicate every month and rename for that month. It has all of our charity, bills, college savings, food, car expenses, etc on it.. We also have sinking funds. This means, we have certain "buckets" in our savings account that money is saved for: car replacement, car repair, education ( we homeschool and it is not cheap), clothing, furniture, HOA fees for the year, certain bills as they are done quarterly, things like that..those are also on my budget page so I can state how much we put into that bucket and it accounts for it in the monthly budget. This has helped us be accountable to ourselves to make sure we are meeting our goals. Oh, and since you are a gifter- we have gifts on our sinking funds list as well.
We also went with budget billing for the utilities that offered it. They take an average for the year and bill accordingly. Our bills stay the same for almost the entire year and then it drops by the end of the year. For instance, our gas bill has been $115 all year long..this month, it dropped to $30. *yay*
We cut satellite and went with Hulu live. It is $40 less than what we were paying with Dish. We do have amazon prime, but that is an annual fee of $100 so it is about $8 a month.. and we have Netflix as well ( wish we would ditch it, but Dh and the kids use it all the time).
I also cook almost every meal at home. I generally make breakfast a few times a week, lunch at least 5x a week and dinner 6x a week. We eat out once a week on Sundays as a general rule and eat leftovers if we have them. This has saved us a bundle. Oh, and I buy my meat at Sam's instead of the grocery store. I buy it and then vaccuum seal it when I get it home before freezing it.
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