10 simple ways you can reduce spending this year (calculator, notebook, pen, and laptop on a desk)
FRUGAL LIVING | SAVE MONEY

Reduce Spending: 10 Best Ways to Cut Spending This Year (Without Feeling Deprived)

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These epic ways to save money totally helped me slash our expenses and reduce spending. You can save hundreds or even thousands of dollars by using these best money saving tips (and you won’t feel deprived)!

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How to Cut Spending

I’m always looking for simple ways to reduce spending.

When you can cut spending, you can take the money you save, and put it towards paying down your debt, paying off your mortgage, saving an emergency fund, or putting money towards your retirement or your children’s education funds. Or going on that post-pandemic trip! (I’m feeling alllmost ready to get back on a plane again!!)

And reducing spending isn’t just about eating ramen for every meal.

There are ways to cut expenses that you probably haven’t heard of yet (see #2 on this list) and money saving hacks that can legit save you thousands of dollars (see #10).

Even picking one idea to reduce spending will save you money; add more strategies to save more, you money-saving beast you!

Let’s get started to reduce spending!

10 Best Ways to Reduce Spending This Year

1. Reduce spending by getting cash back

Use a cash-back app like Rakuten to save money.

It’s really easy to use. You just go through Rakuten before you make any online purchases you were already going to make. Rakuten has hundreds and hundreds of popular stores like Sephora, Amazon, Best Buy, Walmart, Target, etc.

As a thank you for going through their site, Rakuten deposits a percentage of your purchase into an account, from 2-15%.

The only downside of Rakuten for me is when I forget to use it.

I don’t like knowing that I’m spending more money than I need to be!

You can sign up for a free Rakuten account here (and get a sign-up bonus!)

2. Use the Trim App

Use Trim which is like a digital virtual assistant that will find you ways to cut spending.

I always want to know more about how things work, and I don’t know how the Trim algorithm does what it does. It seems almost magical to me lol.

This is what Trim does:

  • It analyzes your spending patterns to find ways that it can take action and save you money
  • Trim negotiates cable, internet, phone, and medical bills, cancels old subscriptions, and more
  • Trim monitors for opportunities to get you more savings

See? Kinda magical!

Trim users save an average of $625.

Try the Trim app here.

3. Buy Used to Reduce Spending

If you’re looking for how to cut expenses in the family budget, a simple way is to buy used.

You can buy pretty much anything used, and with lots of things it makes sense to.

I do buy Miss O some new shoes but I also buy used shoes to save money. Kid’s feet can grow two sizes practically overnight, so an easy way to save money on covering those feet is buying used. Same with clothing, toys, books.

In high school I even bought my prom dress from an upcycling thrift store. (I still have it in my closet and love it – not lots of occasions to wear it during a pandemic. Or like, being a mom and not in high school.)

Try thrift stores, garage sales, kijiji, Facebook marketplace, Craigslist, eBay, etc.

If you want to sell your used things, here are the best places to sell your stuff for the most money.

4. Organize Your Stuff

Organize your things so you can find the things you already own.

Maybe you already have the perfect fall jacket to wear; it has just been buried in the back of your closet for two years.

Spending a weekend organizing your home will help you reduce spending by uncovering the things you already own.

Here are some posts to help you organize even when you feel really overwhelmed:

5. Join Freecycle Groups on Facebook

Reduce spending by getting things for free.

I had no idea the kinds of things people offer for free in Facebook groups. I joined one for my neighborhood (they’re often neighborhood-specific) about a year ago.

To people in this group, I gave away toys, books, and clothing, and have plans to pass along a video baby monitor. We were gifted a ride in toy for Miss O, entirely free. It was this cute ride in toy, which retails for over $100!

People share high quality things in these groups, plus some obscure things you might be looking for. Buy Nothing groups are one of my favorite ways to reduce spending.

6. Meal Plan to Reduce Spending on Food

Meal planning really works folks.

If you want to save money on food, two of the best ways are cook most things from scratch, and meal plan.

Meal planning simple meals with ingredients that are in season or on sale, or both, saves a ton of money.

It takes a bit of time at the beginning of your week, but it saves you time and stress of scrambling around trying to throw together a dinner that isn’t mac & cheese from a box.

If you’re ready to save more money on food, I made an Ultimate Meal Planner for Busy Families. It walks you through all the tips and tricks you need to set up your meal plan, plus all the printables you’ll need to get your food life organized. I use it myself and love it!

Ultimate Meal Planning Guide + Planner book on table with coffee and tablet

Ultimate Meal Planner for Busy Families

A totally doable meal planning guide + full meal planner that’ll teach you how to meal plan, save more, and stress less.

7. Try a Meal Kit

Meal kits are way cheaper than ordering in when you need a day off of your meal plan (or if meal planning is not for you). Here is $90 off to try out Hello Fresh meal kits (including free shipping).

Meal kits are more expensive than cooking everything from scratch but I don’t know anyone who can cook from scratch 100% of the time. When you need a break, instead of ordering expensive take-out or going to a restaurant, you can reduce spending with a meal kit.

Try Hello Fresh here (you’ll get a big discount through my link).

8. Reduce Spending on Insurance

Are you paying too much on life insurance? Life insurance is a boring adult expense that is SO important. You want to make sure your loved ones are protected, but life insurance can be expensive!

You might be able to reduce spending and save LOTS of money long-term by switching life insurance providers.

Here is a quick calculator you can try to see what your monthly amount would be if you switched to Bestow.

Reducing spending on life insurance is something that can easily save you THOUSANDS over the years. Wouldn’t you rather keep that money than give it away?

See how much you can save on insurance here.

9. Decluttr

Not a typo.

Decluttr is a site that helps you make money while you’re reducing clutter.

You can make money selling used cell phones, CDs, DVDs, Lego, books, video games, and more. They are BBB accredited, rated highly on Trustpilot, and pay fast (usually by the next day).

Decluttr can also help you reduce spending on tech.

If you’re looking for a cell phone, tablet or wearable, you can save a lot of money by buying a refurbished model on Decluttr. They offer a free 12-month limited warranty on all tech purchases so you can feel more comfy with buying used tech.

Check out Decluttr here.

10. Use a Programmable Thermostat

Pick a moderate temperature year-round and stick with it.

Over the years in your home, you can save THOUSANDS of dollars on heating and cooling by using a programmable thermostat (and leaving it alone!) 

A programmable thermostat will help you not overheat your home in the winter and overcool your home in the summer. Keeping your home overly cold or overly warm wastes a ton of money.

I won’t lie and say this is the easiest way to reduce spending. I was used to wearing summer clothing year-round inside and had to get used to wearing a sweater.

But I did because I wanted to reduce spending on utilities and save money.

For me after the initial complaining (mine) I now embrace my cardigan-wearing-badass self. Who just so happens to have more money in the bank.

For 10 extreme ideas to save money, check out this post next

Also:

How to spend less money in a tough economy

Pin these ways to reduce spending to save for later ⬇️

10 simple ways to slash expenses and save thousands this year (calculator, notebook, pen, and laptop on a desk)

What is your favorite tip to reduce spending?


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