30 Easy (and Effective!) Household Tips to Save Money

Jill Holtz

May 19, 2014

Household tips to save money - Mykidstime

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Are you looking for ways to stretch your household budget? From energy-saving tips to ideas on how to cut your grocery bill, we have 30 easy (and effective!) household tips to save money – the best part is you can get started today!

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Whether you’re looking to save tens, hundreds or even thousands by making changes, we can all do more around the house to save a few bucks. These tips are easily implemented around the house, and you should start to see some real savings soon.

You May Also Enjoy Take Our 52 Week Savings Challenge To Net Yourself 500

Easy Household Tips to Save Money

#1. Use Up Leftovers

The average household throws away food to the value of €400 per year. Reduce your food waste and, instead of chucking the leftovers, make them into lunch or dinner the next day.

Alternatively, turn wilting veg in the fridge into a stir-fry or quick soup. Soups freeze really well and are there ready and waiting for you on a busy day.

You May Also Enjoy 16 Splendid Soup Recipes That The Kids Will Love

#2. Switch Off Gadgets

Did you know that gadget chargers left plugged in keep using electricity? Plug your gadget chargers into a multi-plug strip and each night make sure the strip is unplugged.

You May Also Enjoy – 75 Ways to Lower Your Electricity Bill

#3. Plan Your Meals for the Week

Meal planning is possibly one of the biggest things you can do to save money before you go shopping. This free meal planning sheet can help you get started.

“Meal planning has been working great for me. Every Sunday our fridge is almost empty, exact meal planning and precise shopping means zero waste for us.” – Babina

You May Also Enjoy [WATCH] Using Weekly Meal Plans to Save Money and 10 Top Tips on How To Feed Your Family for Less

#4. Reduce Toilet Paper Use

When my daughter was younger she’d use screeds of toilet paper, often blocking the bend in the process! We hit upon a simple number of sheets that she had to count up to.

Saving on toilet paper does add up – and helps the environment too.

You can also keep empty paper rolls and fill them with compost to plant seeds in, which saves money on pots. Alternatively, they are free craft supplies for kids looking to make creative paper roll crafts.

#5. Use Vinegar on Your Windows

Instead of hiring a window cleaner or buying expensive products, just add white vinegar to water in a spray bottle and you’ll find it does just the trick.

A microfibre cloth is great for leaving a streak-free finish, but tradition actually would have been to use scrunched up newspaper for the same effect.

#6. Buy Loose Fruit and Veg

Household tips to save money - Mykidstime

When shopping at supermarkets, buy your fruit and veg loose rather than pre-packaged. Not only could you save money, but you will only buy what you actually need.

“Most supermarkets sell bags of bananas, carrots and so on for £1 or so, but if you buy them loose it costs a fraction of the price.” – Melissa

#7. Make Stock Out of Trimmings

Save and freeze carrot tops, potato peelings, wilted herbs and scraps of meat or chicken bones. Bag and freeze them, then add water and a bay leaf later to make a stock for casserole or soup.

#8. Make Your Own Ice Lollies

Use an ice lolly mould (or if you don’t have one, you can use an ice cube tray with toothpicks) and try different juices or combinations.

Tip: half fill the mould rather than to the top. Firstly, it helps keep juice intake a little lower for kids (as even natural fruit juice has sugar in it) and, secondly, by the time they eat their way halfway on a larger ice lolly the juice has mostly gone so you’re left with half eaten ice anyway.

There are lots of ideas for fun flavours of ice lollies on this Crumbs video:

You May Also Enjoy 8 Healthy Ice Pop Recipes for Kids

#9. Use Less Detergent for your Laundry

Use less washing powder per load. Nowadays washing machines are more efficient and often half the amount of powder or liquid will be plenty.

#10. Switch Off the Lights

Train everyone to switch off lights when they leave the room. Turning off lights that aren’t in use could save you 10-20% of your bill!

#11. Cook At Home

Household tips to save money - Mykidstime

Simple dishes can cost very little compared to takeaways or ready meals.

For example, 1 tin of tomatoes, 1 garlic clove, a glug of olive oil and some basil (if you have it) or dried oregano whips up a nice pasta sauce for 4 people.

You May Also Enjoy 10 Super Cheap Dinner Recipes Perfect For Rumbly Tummies

#12. Make Your Own Flavoured Water

Instead of buying expensive bottled waters from the supermarket, add your own flavour to tap water with slices of cucumber, orange or lemon.

#13. Look for Alternatives to Expensive Cleaning Products

Branded cleaning products can be expensive, and need to be replaced every few weeks. Look for alternatives with either natural or own-brand products.

“I use Norwex microfiber Enviro Cloths with tap water and have replaced my all-purpose cleaners. They initial cost is higher, but they are guaranteed for two years and work out considerably cheaper than buying cleaning products every few weeks.” – Sandra

“Instead of using bleach to take stains from your clothes, use Milton sterilizing fluid. It’s a fraction of the price and brings white items up like new.” – Alana

“I have saved tons of money by making my own laundry soap!” – Jen (here’s a video on making your own laundry detergent)

#14. Don’t Shop When You’re Hungry

When you’re hungry you can end up buying tons of extra things, as your tummy leads the charge instead of your brain.

“Make a list before you shop and stick to it.” – Michelle

#15. Use Coupons

Most supermarket loyalty schemes send out coupons regularly. Often these are based on your previous purchases so use those if you buy the items regularly.

Tip: Check the coupon date and don’t forget to use before expiry. Keep the coupons in your wallet so you always have them to hand.

“Get Sunday’s paper and clip coupons. Be sure to read the coupon as sometimes the coupon value is given if you buy two of the product. And always check coupon date!” – Robert

#16. Use a Local Milk Delivery Service

Check if there’s a local milk delivery service available, as this can be more cost effective (and guarantee you have regular milk to your door).

“This is saving me a lot. I used to go to local supermarket every second day for milk, and always ended up spending €30-40 on other non essentials. This way, I don’t need to go for milk, only for the main grocery shop.” – Linda

#17. Bulk Buy Your Meat

Have you ever considered buying meat in bulk? Instead of buying 3 or 4 chicken breasts for one meal, what about buying a month’s worth and portioning it out?

“I buy all my meat monthly and then spend a day seasoning it and bagging it in meal-size amounts for the freezer. I mark all the bags so I know what I’m pulling out for dinner…this way I avoid getting takeout too often.” – Natacha

#18. Use Apples or Marshmallows!

Keep your food fresher for longer with some handy household tips.

“A marshmallow in brown sugar will keep the sugar from getting hard, and an apple in a bag of potatoes will keep them from going bad.” – Beth

#19. Invest in a Slow Cooker

Slow cookers are easy and economical to use – in fact this is one of our favourite household tips to save money!

Cheaper cuts of meat are actually ideal for the slow cooker, which will help to bring down your grocery bill.

You May Also Enjoy Cheaper, Easier and Tastier: 14 Days of Slow Cooker Family Meals and 15 Amazing Slow Cooker Recipes for Families

#20. Grow Your Own

Household tips to save money - Mykidstime

Growing your own can be very cost effective. Salad leaves, for example, are quick to grow and a fraction of the price of bagged versions from the supermarket. Plus the kids will enjoy planting and watching things grow.

“Buy an inexpensive greenhouse and some seeds. Growing your own will save a fortune. You could also grow flowers and use them for gifts.” – Elaine

#21. Change to Energy Saving Light Bulbs

They might be a bit more expensive at first, but they can reduce your electricity bill by 30% – and they last longer.

#22. Don’t Fill the Kettle

When using the kettle, just put in enough water for what’s actually needed. It’s more efficient and uses less electricity.

#23. Do Your Shopping on Off Peak Days

“I shop on Sundays or Monday morning when there is usually loads of fresh produce at half price – I buy it and freeze for later.” – Lydia

#24. Don’t Buy Everything in the Supermarket

While it does save on fuel costs to just go to one store (and supermarkets make it easy to buy everything under one roof), often local shops such as a butcher or bakery will have good deals.

“Buy all of your produce at your local farmer’s markets or greengrocer if possible. You will get fresher foods, save loads of money, and you’ll be supporting local businesses.” – Ann-Marie

#25. Use Vinegar and Baking Soda

Independently and combined, they are great cleaning agents. Our grandmothers and mothers cleaned with vinegar, baking soda and lemon.

For example, pour 1/2 cup vinegar and 1/2 cup baking soda down the drain and rinse with water to keep drains clear.

“I have no need to buy anything else, except maybe bleach.” – Aneesa

#26. Batch Cook & Freeze

The next time you are cooking, double or triple the quantities and freeze the extra in meal-size batches. Next time you need a quick meal you’ll be able to reheat quickly. This can also be a good way of using your bulk buys (see tip #17).

You May Also Enjoy 15 Tasty Freezer Dump Meals Guaranteed to Save You Time

#27. Look for Deals and Special Offers

Check each week for deals or discounted items – but be careful that you don’t get tempted to buy something that you won’t actually use. If you see a good deal and buy it but it’s extra spend that you hadn’t planned then remember to take it out of next week’s budget.

“I look out for offers and bag them for the freezer.” – Deborah

#28. Swap Out Some Meat for Less Costly Meals

Household tips to save money - Mykidstime

Beans, lentils and vegetables are much cheaper than meat-based meals, so it’s definitely worth incorporating some vegetarian meals in your weekly plan.

“I cook meat every other day, with something like tuna pasta bake in between.” – Sally

You May Also Enjoy 11 of the Best Vegetarian Recipes for a Meatless Monday

#29. Turn Your Heating Down

Turning your heating down by even just one degree can reduce the amount of electricity, gas or oil your heating is using. Consider installing programmable thermostats and/or investing in separate heating controls for upstairs and downstairs so that you can set timers on your heating and avoid heating rooms that you aren’t in at the time.

#30. Buy Supermarket Own Brands

While there might be some brands you wouldn’t compromise on, you might be surprised at the quality of the supermarket own brands – and save some money at the same time.

Look after the pennies, the pounds will look after themselves, as my grandmother used to say!

You May Also Enjoy 11 Practical Tips for Keeping Fruit and Vegetables Fresh for Longer

What are your favourite household tips to save money? Leave a comment below and let us know – we’d love to hear from you!

Household tips to save money - Mykidstime

Like this? Share it with your network!

Like this? Share it with your network!

Published On: May 19th, 2014 / Categories: Lifestyle / Last Updated: March 30th, 2021 / Tags: , , /

About the Author: Jill Holtz

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Jill is one of the co-founders of Mykidstime and a mum of 2 girls

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