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Families are always looking for new tricks to save money. I know we are always looking for new tricks to save money, but thinking about it, all I have to implement are old, known tricks my parents taught me about money. Read on to review ways to save money that you actually learned from your parents and grandparents.
I never understood why my parents did certain things around the house. As a child, I wasn’t concerned about money. I had no bills to pay and I didn’t understand the workings of a household budget.
I always had so many questions about why my parents did certain things around the house.
Why take a quick shower when you can sit and play?
Do I really need to turn off the lights/fans/tv/radio even though I’m not in the room?
How come we need to cut the coupons from the Sunday paper every week before grocery shopping?
Why save old bags to reuse?
I didn’t understand any of this until I grew up and had a family household of my own.
This article offers a great reminder of tricks my parents taught me about money and likely, your parents taught you also. Our job is to implement these tips we were taught in our own children and families.
Here are some of the tricks to save money my parents taught me and most likely, you learned these lessons too!
1. Turn off the lights when we’re not in the room!
This probably drove my parents crazy! Having three kids, we all left something on when we weren’t in the room. I think back, and this was always a thing. Usually it was when we were older and at night, we’d keep every light on in the house!
What I’ve learned: Turn things off if I’m not in the room using it! I now turn off all lights/fans/TVs/radios…anything that takes electricity is turned off!
2. Don’t buy name brand!
Back to school shopping must have been fun for my parents! We always wanted the name brand stuff! It was a status thing in school, but as an adult, I realize it was a waste of money!
What I’ve learned: Skip the name brands to save money in your household! Name brands mean nothing to me now! I go for cheap, but not so cheap that I’ll need to buy it again next week!
3. Don’t waste water
This money saving tip goes way back but still applies today. I never understood it growing up. I hated taking showers and it was a struggle to get me in there, but once I was in, then I wouldn’t want to come out and would play forever!
What I’ve learned: Take quick showers for all! Don’t fill the bathtub too high for the children. And wash clothes in cold/warm water! Don’t wash a load of laundry or dishes with half loads. And turn off the running water while “quickly” doing something else!
I never understood this growing up. I remember sitting in the grocery store parking lot while my Mom cut out some last minute coupons from the Sunday paper. The thought in my head was always, “Why bother “wasting” time looking for coupons? It doesn’t save you that much anyway!”
What I’ve learned: Oh man was I wrong about this! Now I love couponing! I love saving the additional couple of dollars off my grocery bill or getting that money back on my Ibotta account.
Ibotta is my go-to money saving app for grocery shopping, but it can be used for much more than just groceries! They’ve added money back on purchases from Walmart.com and Target.com which is right in time for Christmas!
If you aren’t using Ibotta, stop reading, open the link here, and sign up! You’ll get $10 in your account after your first scan!
5. Save things you can reuse
Bags, twist-ties, jars, plastic containers…yup, we saved them all, and now I do too in my household! I don’t know why I save them, but I do! And I reuse them too!
What I’ve learned: You can reuse almost anything without having to buy new things. Plastic whipped cream containers clean very easily and are perfect for leftovers. You can never have enough twist-ties around because you never know when you may need them! Old sauce jars are perfect for grease jars! And you can always find a use for old plastic bags!
Let me tell you…I have found ways to reuse that I wasn’t planning on doing. Our medicine/bathroom overflow cabinet was so disorganized with little junk all over. We couldn’t find anything and my husband wanted to throw most of the stuff out. I told him I was going to buy little baskets to put in there and organize all the stuff so it wouldn’t fall over and knock everything else down whenever we attempted to get one thing out.
Instead of spending money on baskets, I cut up old shoe boxes we had from our kids’ shoes and used those to organize everything. (I was going to paint them and make them pretty but then realized I’d rather spend my time doing something else because let’s face it, how many people would actually be looking in there?)
6. Money doesn’t grow on trees
This is a lesson I’m sure we all heard growing up when we really really really wanted something. “Money doesn’t grow on trees, you know?” Haha! How many heard that growing up? I hated this saying but as I grew up, I understood it more and more.
What I’ve learned: Money isn’t endless. It doesn’t regenerate without working for it. Pick and choose what you need in your household rather than buying everything you feel you need.
7. Vacations don’t have to be expensive.
I always thought growing up vacationing in Disney or taking a spring break trip down to somewhere warm was THE thing you had to do for “status” in school. We took a lot of family trips west of our home state of Minnesota during the summers visiting what the land west to the Mountains had to offer. These vacation locations weren’t exciting when my friends asked me where we went on vacation, but looking back, they were fun and full of memories!
What I’ve learned: It’s about the memories you will make as a family rather than the amount of money you spend and the places you go. You don’t have to spend an arm and a leg flying to an all-inclusive resort to have the family vacation you and your kids will love.
Read about our recent family trip to Niagara Falls. We spent an extended weekend there and saved well over $400 on our vacation without missing out on anything we wanted to do! Many of these same tips can be applied to any family vacation!
8. You don’t have to spend money to make memories with your family!
Growing up, I always had the idea that we needed to buy tickets to this event or spend money to go to that place to make memories with our family. I never considered the free stuff meaning the most when I grew up, but that’s how it has become. I remember the parades we went to at local city celebrations and the parks we played at versus the
What I’ve learned: The free events can be the most fun for your children. Maybe it’s a tradition to go to the park and have a picnic or go to a parade as a family. Your children will love spending time together and won’t care if it’s free or cost money.
9. Only spend what you have
I had a certain amount of money to spend on knick-knacks on family vacations. (I loved getting the knick-knacks and stuff I did not need at all, which is funny because I hate the knick-knacks know and throw them away) Once the money was gone, it was gone. I couldn’t buy anything else. This lesson is helpful to have as a grown up.
What I’ve learned: Don’t spend more than we bring in. Don’t put things on credit cards that we can’t pay off right away. This is a big lesson for all budgeters! You need to know what is coming in and going out in your household.
10. Do it yourself!
Growing up, my parents always did things themselves. I don’t remember any times that someone came into our house to fix something around the house. To save money, they always had projects around the house to fix.
What I’ve learned: Do it yourself if you have the talent to and knowledge of it! We had issues with our toilets and have needed to replace the insides of the toilets. Now we have no knowledge of plumbing, but with YouTube’s help, we were able to replace the insides of the toilet with slight issues, that were eventually solved. It saved us over $200 each time instead of having to call the plumber.
The lessons we learned about money have been available to us since we were little children. Our job is to implement these lessons about money into our families to help us save around the house and begin teaching our own children about saving money.