5 Ways to Save $50-plus Per Month

by Mike

David Bakke constantly searches for new ways to save money and shares his findings on the personal finance blog, Money Crashers.

Show me a bunch of ways to save $10 per month, and I won’t be too interested. Explain to me how to save $25 a month, and my eyebrows might rise a tad. But if you mention shaving off $50 per month from what I spend, now that gets some attention. Think about it: An extra $50 in your pocket each month comes out to $600 at the end of the year. If you can find five ways to save an extra $50 per month, and your savings rise to a whopping $3,000 per year

Fortunately, finding five ways to save $50 each month isn’t that difficult:

1. Clip Coupons
Far too few people take advantage of coupons. Extreme couponers – those who put in some serious time – can shave off upwards of 80% from their grocery bills. However, it only takes saving $12.50 per week to reach the $50 monthly threshold, and doing so is relatively easy: Each Sunday, pick up a few copies of your local paper, or save that cost by trading coupons with your friends on the things you each buy. Organize your coupons by expiration date, and try to shop on the day that your local supermarket doubles coupon values. Sign up for loyalty programs and discount cards, and join a coupon service, such as Coupon Cactus or Shopping Nanny, for additional deals.

2. Bundle Services
There’s just no sense in having your cell phone, cable TV, and Internet service contracts with three different companies. Check out bundle offers from a few providers, and make the best choice. But don’t stop there. When you call, ask if the advertised price can be improved upon, and you may be pleasantly surprised: “Consumer Reports” conducted a survey in which a third of participants asked for a better deal – and 90% of them got it.

3. Eat Out Less
If you eliminate just one family trip to a restaurant each month, your household can easily save more than $50. And when you do dine out, do it smart. Take advantage of daily deal sites such as Groupon or Living Social for half-off offers. And there are many cell phone apps, such as Bite Hunter, that provide you with meal deals in your area.

4. Take Lunch to Work
Let’s say you eat out every day of the workweek and, on average, spend $7 per meal. That’s $35 per week. If you bring your own lunch to work, you’ll spend roughly $2 per lunch. The final tallied savings: $100 every month. Plus, what you put together at home is sure to be much healthier than restaurant food.

5. Pay Off Credit Card Balances
At first glance, this seems like spending, not saving. But the average American carries approximately $7,000 in credit card debt and pays about $1,000 per year in interest. By eliminating this costly expense, you can save more than $80 per month. Even if your debts aren’t that significant, it’s still worthwhile to pay them off – it’s never worthwhile to pay interest.

Final Thoughts
Unfortunately, the majority of Americans are woefully unprepared for retirement, and many more have no emergency fund whatsoever. Therefore, now is the time to improve your personal finances and save more money. By making these small changes, you can line your pockets with some significant extra cash.

What other ways can you think of to save $50 per month?

{ 11 comments… read them below or add one }

Money Beagle

It all depends on how much you drive, but improving your driving habits can reduce your gas consumption, leaving money in your pocket. If you floor it at every green light, you’re wasting gas. If you don’t pay attention to lights ahead of you so that you could start letting up on the gas if it is obvious that the light will change, you’re wasting gas. If you barrel down the highway at 80MPH you’re wasting lots of gas. More awareness to your driving habits can save you a lot at the pump.
Money Beagle´s last blog post ..6 Terrible Reasons Your Boss Might Love You



Good points, I would add lowering your expenses as another area such as utilities, insurance (raise deductibles) or shop recurring expenses. Then throw the savings into investing long term for retirement.
krantcents´s last blog post ..Negotiation Starts When You Ask a Question!


Greg @ Thriftgenuity.com

Every little bit helps and these are all good ways to cut the budget down. I think it is a good idea for people to take a good look at their cell phone bill as well to find savings.
Greg @ Thriftgenuity.com´s last blog post ..Tips on How to Deal with Debt


KC @ genxfinance

These are really good tips. No matter how small, as long as we are consistently saving every month, it can exponentially grow in no time.
KC @ genxfinance´s last blog post ..Maximum 401k Contribution for 2013


Thomas @ Your Daily Finance

Nice simple and easy to follow. Another one is cutting the gym membership and if you can maybe doing/cutting your own hair. Taking lunch to work saves but even stopping the Starbucks in the morning will probably save $50 per month if not more.
Thomas @ Your Daily Finance´s last blog post ..What Does It Mean To Pay Yourself First


Simon @ Modest Money

Huh…there are just a whole lot of ways you can save money each month if you are willing to sit down, evaluate your expenses and look for areas you can cut back on or completely do away with eg,
* Switch to energy efficient bulbs.
* Bike to work
* Sell stuff you don’t need
Simon @ Modest Money´s last blog post ..Mint Review – Detailed Review of Mint.com Software



You can save a lot just taking the lunch form home. Many people spend around $10 for their daily lunch and thats a lot.
DailyProof´s last blog post ..Do You Have an Environmentally Friendly Office


Kevin Watts @ Graduating From Debt

I used to eat out at least five times in a month. In last three month, I have reduced the number to two times per month. I have saved around $150 per month. I am gonna follow your other tips too. Thanks for sharing your ideas with us.



Getting into the habit of doing what you have advised here can save HUNDREDS a month, not only $50. As you mentioned, it’s not hard to save 50 bucks, and, with some smart decisions and consistency the savings can go up even more.
dojo´s last blog post ..How to Save Money: Start Your Christmas Shopping in Time



You need to be creative if you want to save money and not suffer from it. For example, lately my husband and I are enjoying picnic dates. We make our food the way we like at home and go to a nice spot and enjoy it. We find it more enjoyable than going out to a restaurant and find the food below expectations but pay 3 – 4 times more money.

Also, always check for the deals in grocery store. Many times you can find the top brands cheaper than the low quality ones. Always check the prices. If something is really expensive, I find it offensive to pay money for such items. I can always buy something else instead. Also, spend money when you find good deals. We enjoy whisky for example and buy several bottles when we see the brand we like a bit cheaper than usual price. You would only know it is cheaper if you are watching the prices.
Jenny´s last blog post ..10 Steps to Find the Right Auto Insurance Coverage, Premium and Insurer


Nik @ Midlife Finance

Things that you do once or twice a month like watching movies, eating out with friends. I think I’m doing this before almost 6 times monthly, but I decided to change this habit and I’m now saving, not just $50 but almost $90 monthly.
Nik @ Midlife Finance´s last blog post ..Advice From A Millionaire


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