3 Places To Stretch Your Family Budget

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Family Budget

Many families live on a budget, and it’s easier than ever to spend more on everyday expenses than you planned. If you’re looking for ways to spend less and save more, here are a few budget items you may want to investigate.

1. Phone Plan

Cell phone plans can add up quickly. You may be able to save some money by checking into a few things.

First of all, look at other carriers. If you’ve been using the same one for a while, you may not realize you can get similar (or better) coverage for less money. Shop around and see if Boost Mobile plans are less expensive than what you’re currently paying.

If you don’t have an unlimited data plan, you can save money by taking advantage of free WiFi or hot spots where you find them. You may find free WiFi available at:

  • A restaurant
  • The grocery store
  • Your doctor’s office

Every little bit of data adds up, and even saving a few minutes at a time can impact your bill.

Are you tempted to get the latest and greatest phone when a new model becomes available? See if you can resist buying one for a while. Your current phone may be just fine for another year or two. Keep in mind that new models sometimes have bugs or glitches, and it can be to your advantage to wait and let the company work them out before investing in a brand-new model.

Check to see if your carrier is offering any deals or specials. You may discover that adjusting your plan saves you money each month. You may also be able to knock a few dollars off of your bill by signing up for auto pay.

2. Groceries

Food prices seem to go higher all the time. Since everyone in your house still needs to eat, you may have to get creative regarding grocery shopping.

Shop your pantry before you head to the store. You may find you have the ingredients to whip up a simple meal, saving you the time and expense of driving to the store.

Plan your meals as often as you can. If you are headed to the store and know what you need for the next week of meals, you won’t spend as much time wandering the aisles and adding random items to your cart that you think you might use. A meal plan can help you get through the store and stick to your list. Double your recipes and put a meal in the freezer for later. You can save money and time on those nights you’re enticed to order takeout.

Shopping for in-season products can help you save. In-season produce, for example, is much cheaper than out-of-season fruits and vegetables that travel a long way to reach the store. Meat can be in season, too, depending on the time of year. You may find ham on sale around Easter or hot dogs and burgers priced lower in the summer. Stock up and put your freezer to use when you find a deal.

3. Gas Tank

You can pour lots of money into your gas tank. Try a few tips if you want to fill it a little less often.

Follow the speed limit. When you drive slower, you create less drag, and your vehicle doesn’t need as much fuel. If you’re on the highway, set the cruise control to stay at or under the speed limit. (This tip can also save you from a speeding ticket expense.)

Keep your engine tuned and your tires properly inflated. Change your filters regularly and make sure you use the recommended motor oil. While car maintenance is an expense, a poorly running vehicle costs you in the long run with lower fuel efficiency and safety issues.

It can be expensive to run a household, but you can sometimes save money in surprising ways with a bit of research.

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