Monday, November 24, 2008

Less Money Leaving your House

The first logical place to start living within your means is making less of your hard earned money leave your house.

First step:
Cutting out everything that is extra

Start with the things you don't use. Mainly memberships.

Gym memberships
Wholesale food memberships
Memberships to online activities
Movie rental memberships

Anything you have to pay memberships fees to every month, look at them closely to see if you really use them. Or see if there is a different way to use them.

Gym memberships, find a cheaper gym, or work out at home. Don't have those fancy machines, figure out if a friend does and see if you can work out there. Go walk in the mall if you have the will power not to shop when you are done. Do you have On Demand on your TV? They have tons of different workout routines, you could do a new one every day.

Wholesale foods memberships, do you use it enough for it to be cost effective? If not, don't renew it. If you need it, maybe you could share with a friend. If you buy the same things all the time, figure out the cost and give your friend the list and money. Make sure that you repay them back somehow, maybe watching her kids so she can shop alone.

Online memberships. These are tricky memberships that you might have forgot about. Did you sign up for a greeting card service, but haven't used it for months? You will automatically get charged to your credit card weather you use it or not. Be careful of online memberships, you have to really use them for them to pay off.

Movie rental, mainly monthly charged plans such as Netflix or Blockbuster. With the amount of free movies you can get at the library, or even using Red Box, it is really not worth your money to have one of these rental memberships. You are paying for convenience of them getting shipped to your house. Wouldn't it be more fun to go to the library with the kids to get a few books at the same time?

Think about what memberships that you have. Do you really use them? Do you really need them? Could you live without them? Probably. Now think about how much money you will save every month without these memberships. That can really add up fast.

Starting today, start canceling those memberships that you don't use or need. Don't wait until tomorrow, you will forget by then. Do it now while you are on the computer and next to the phone. You wallet will be happier!

Next week: More things to cut out of your spending.

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A blog about living within your means in todays world, while being married, raising three kids, working full-time, and trying not to go crazy in the process.