What up, what up!
Last Friday we ran a giveaway here of my old iPhone to someone who shared how they’ve tip’d themselves lately (winner announced below!), and there were SO MANY great savings ideas being passed over that I had to just share some of them with y’all…
You never know what’ll end up clicking, so read through them all and then see if there’s any worth testing! And if you do, make sure to come back and tell us how many millions you went on to bank ;)
Hope this helps!
The $1.00/Day Trick
“Good morning J$! I’m a big fitness guy and I’ve been obsessing over these new smart watches that track just about everything I could wish for (they won’t track any of my budgets though ;).)
I’ve been really into one in particular: the Garmin Fenix 3 HR. Unfortunately it runs at about $350 currently and I can’t justify spending that much on a little screen that wraps around my wrist (even when I find sales going on for nearly $75 off that price.)
So to find out if I truly wanted this watch, I made a deal to Tip myself $1 every day for a year starting back in January. If I still want that watch come Christmas time, then I’ve proved to myself that it was not a passing want for a slick overpriced watch as well as spaved up enough to buy the watch outright!
What’s $1 a day going to hurt, right?!” – Chris L.
The $20+/Week Trick!
“I upped my weekly contribution to my FFF Account – Financial Freedom Fund. At the beginning of the year, you challenged readers to put aside $20 per month. Well, I went one better, and made it weekly. Then upped it to $21, now it’s up to $25. My theory is, save until it hurts. Not hurting too bad yet… Thanks for making my FI journey a little shorter and a little more interesting!” – Karin
The Secret Stash
“I put $20 folded neatly and stashed in my “secret” wallet compartment. Why? because I promised myself I would “start paying me first.” I’m a single grandma raising my 7-year-old granddaughter (born to my daughter while she was still in high school) as my own and soooo I had been paying for everything else and thought I would start paying myself $20 with each check (I’m self-employed so never really know how much those checks will be, so this is a start).” – Lisa D.
The Money Jar
“Just sold an old canoe for $200 and put the money in my “money jar”. This money jar is just for me, when I want to do something out of our budget. Like when the kids come home from college and we want to take them out to eat and a movie, etc. Basically, it is money that I have no guilt in spending, because it doesn’t count towards our budget.” – Becky
The Smoker Fund
“I’ve recently found this process to be very effective in reaching my goals of quitting smoking. I put away $4 each day into a glass jar while I was quitting as that was how much I was spending each day (on average) on my smoking habit.
It was so rewarding hearing the ‘clink’ of my two $2 dollar coins splashing into the bottom of the jar at the end of every day. At the end of my first month, I put it toward a bottle of scotch I’d been drooling, I mean, dreaming about (Glen Fiddich 15yr old). I’ve kept up the practice for the past 3 months but moved to a digital savings each day and have a new pair of golf clubs I’m now saving for.
Highly effective practice, feeling like I’m putting wasted money toward goals and things I really truly value.” – James W.
The $5.00 Bill Trick
“Whenever I get a $5 bill I put it aside and it becomes part of my vacation fund. It’s amazing how fast a $5 bill here and a $5 bill there can add up. I’ve saved hundreds of dollars each year doing this trick. Great way to stash away some vacation money without feeling like you are taking a hit out of savings. Of course it’s rough when you pay for something under $5 with a $20 and get three $5 bills back in change – nice for the vacation fund but makes the weekly spending budget a bit tighter! It’s funny how now I have such a hard time parting with a $5 bill” – LeeAnne
[EDITOR’S NOTE: We actually ran an article on someone who saved $36,000 doing this! Check it out at Rockstar Finance]
The Intentional Thinker
“I have started “ tipping” myself by stashing away money that I would have spent on “ old money spending habits”… fast food drive through purchases was my biggest one as well as check out line candy purchases and even my occasional need of having “to be in it to win it” lottery ticket purchases.
It started as a way to be intentional with my thinking about spending my hard earned money when I had the urge to spend money on impulsive and less than quality items and has happily turned into away to add additional saving for a special 25 th Birthday vacation for my son!
This new and better money habit is also a way to treat my body better and in the long run is a wonderful win-win situation!” – Kim W.
The Busy Retiree!
I retired on April 6! Yes, retirement is just as busy as paid work, but with a more flexible schedule. I spent the past year tipping myself.
Refinanced my mortgage to 4.25% on a 10 year note and set up bi-weekly payments starting June 2017 that included an extra $100/month to principal. Just received escrow reduction (yea age, local tax reduction) and increased the additional principal by that $104/month. Initial payoff June 2027; projected pay off December 2023.
While still working was finally able to join a van pool; saving $189/month for parking plus wear and tear on car; cost to ride 90 minutes each way with 14 strangers $100/month. Ended with retirement.
Cancelled Direct TV and switched to Hulu (bit of a learning curve), saving $60/month. Got rid of cable wires and rearranged den for first time in 17 years!
Cancelled gym membership ($21/month) as my retirement covers Silver Sneakers membership at no cost.
Called to cancel on-line NY Times subscription at $26/month and was given a monthly rate of $10.50.
Called to cancel Massage Envy membership of $59/month (retirement=no stress?) and was told to call back when I was ready to rejoin and as a long-time member would be offered a significant discount. Kept that email.
Cancelled Am Express gold card with annual fee and kept Am Express Optima with no fee, but still earn rewards.
Cancelled several online genealogy subscriptions as I now have time to access at the library. Same for Barnes and Noble when current year is up.
Spent the weekend moving ~1000 pictures from previously free Verizon Cloud (not free as of May 1) to thumb drive and ultimately Amazon Prime Cloud (I cannot give up Prime).
Received a nice check for 49 days of saved and unused personal time off and used a chunk to build up my savings from 3 months to almost 5 months, much to the delight of my financial gurus.
Opened a Chase Slate account with no interest for 15 months to pay off several smaller but interest charging accounts. Have watched it religiously and will have it paid in full at 13 months. Will then cancel.
Signed up for Drive Safe which literally drove me nuts for a bit (consistently dinged for something on my left turns), but has reduced my car insurance premiums, as will not frequently diving in rush hour and reduction in mileage.
Using my debit card as opposed to cash; easier to see what I really did not need to spend.
Reviewed my donations and reduced to the three most important to me.
Asking for my senior discount when available.
Still adding to my savings each month, including funds to cover annual payments.
A good tipping start, don’t you think?” – Helen W.
And then my favorite of all comments….
“You make me so proud of myself. I have had a $0 balance for over 2 years. I had to put the breaks on all saving to get my bills paid off. This was the first month I could put anything aside. I have to say I am ashamed to say how much. It’s all singles. But as the sky is clear and nice, it’s here and I am hoping to be able to add more.”
– Sharon J.
She then attached a pic:
Never give up, y’all :) Every dollar adds an ounce of empowerment! And we all have to start somewhere!!
Let me know if you end up trying any of these out, or if you have any other tricks you’ve experimented with over the years… We can never have too many ideas!!
As to the winner of our iPhone giveaway?
It’ll now be the property of one “Anthony M.” who emailed in, and who coincidentally had been saving up for a new iPhone himself as his has “more cracks in it than a sidewalk” haha… He’s also about to go on a honeymoon later this year, so hopefully the saved money can go towards something much more sexy. Literally and figuratively! ;)
Thanks for participating everyone, we’ll see ya back here shortly…
I have a box of about 30-40 $$$ books I still wanna give away at some point over the Summer too – so stay tuned for those to drop!
Jay loves talking about money, collecting coins, blasting hip-hop, and hanging out with his three beautiful boys. You can check out all of his online projects at jmoney.biz. Thanks for reading the blog!