12 Money Saving Tips

Let's be honest - trying to go organic and living healthy is very rewarding, but can be hugely expensive! If you make the decision to go organic, you might find your budget screaming in protest. Here are a few ideas to help get you started scrounging some extra dollars together!

1. Learn to cut your own hair.
My husband and I save hundreds of dollars a year simply by never having to pay someone $20+ to cut our hair every month. We picked up a good quality hair cutting kit, and have taught ourselves to cut each others hair for free. (Be forewarned - this is an excellent trust building exercise for relationships!!)

2. Stop using harsh detergents and cleaners
They are expensive, toxic products that you can easily duplicate for a fraction of the cost. I use vinegar and baking soda for pretty much everything - including my laundry, and it works just as well as any other commercial soap I've tried. Here's my recipe.

3. Stop eating out so much
 Eating at a restaurant a couple of times a week will add up very quickly - especially if you have a brood of hungry mouths to feed! Cutting out even one night of eating out will save you around $30.

4. Plan and cook your own meals
Make a meal plan for a week in advance, and try to get everything you'll need in one shop so that you aren't always headed back to the store for odds and ends and spending the extra dollars in gas and random splurges.

5. Try to kick bad habits
This is a hard one! Things like smoking, alcohol, energy drinks and coffee will skyrocket your monthly expenses. Try to at least cut back, or stop altogether. Find alternative ways to de-stress and try to sleep more so you don't need all that caffeine. Your body and wallet will thank you!

6. Use your local library
This one can save you thousands! Libraries offer all kinds of books, DVD's, CD's and video games that you can rent for free instead of buying them at full price.

7. Learn basic sewing
Don't throw out that perfectly good pair of pants simply because it got a hole in the pocket. Grab a needle, some thread, and a piece of scrap material to make it as good as new and last you many more wears.

8. Have some self-control when out shopping
Seriously, do you really need a new t-shirt when there are 20 others sitting in your closet at home? Spending some time with people less fortunate than yourself can help you be thankful for what you already have and put a check on your random un-needed spending.

9. Thrift stores are your friends
From clothing to pots and pans, to electronics and furniture, second hand and consignment stores can be a great way to find something you love for only a few dollars. Not to mention there's always something new and exciting to browse through!

10. Sites like Kijiji are your new best friends
You can find just about anything you can think of on sites like this. When my husband and I were moving into our apartment from our parents places, we had no furniture to speak of. After some bargain hunting, we were able to outfit our new home with a table, chairs, couches, bed and dressers that all looked like new for about $1,000.

11. Teach yourself some basic mechanical skills
Learning to change the oil in the car yourself isn't that hard - do yourself a favour and youtube how to do basic repairs around your home instead of always hiring expensive professionals to do the job. Save that call and your cash for when the problem is too big for you to handle on your own.

12. Find ways to have free fun
Spray parks and biking in the summer, ice skating and snowman building in the winter are just a few of the countless ways to have fun for free all through the year! Don't forget to keep an eye on your local community events, and have fun attending! Even just staying at home can be a ton of fun if you are doing the right activity!

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