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Life is expensive. If you are like most recipients of disability benefits, your budget is
tight. You are always on the lookout for ways to make the most of every dollar you
Here are five money-saving tricks that will help make your income go much farther,
and maybe even leave you a little bit of cushion every month.
1. USE CASH FOR DAILY EXPENSES.
Living in the 21st century means credit cards, debit cards, one-click ordering,
mobile payments, and digital wallets. And, while that may seem convenient, it’s
costing you a lot of cash, and you probably don’t even realize it.
When people use cards and apps to make purchases instead of cash:
• They don’t usually stop to think about the money they are spending, which
usually means they spend more than they would with cash.
• They aren’t always aware of how much they are spending, and that can
cause overspending and overdraft charges.
• They are swiping a credit card because they are spending money they don’t
This trick is by far the most difficult because it does require a major change in daily
habits. However, there are some simple steps you can take to make the transition
to using cash relatively simple.
As financial guru Dave Ramsey says, every month you should be “telling your
money where to go, instead of wondering where it went.” And, that means you
must begin each month with a budget. You can go old school and use pen and
paper, or go with an app like Every Dollar, Wally, or Pocket Guard.
Once you know your monthly income and expenses, the next step is easy. Leave
enough money in your bank account to cover your big expenses like rent and
utilities so you can pay those bills online or with a check, then withdraw the cash you
will need for your daily expenses, like food and gas, until you get your next check.
Using cash will make you think twice about each dollar you are taking out of your
wallet, and you will automatically spend less.
2. CLEAR YOUR COOKIES.
When you are shopping online, the prices you see in your searches are often based
on your browser history. This is especially true when you are buying airline tickets.
There is a thing called “dynamic pricing,” and online companies use it by following
your browser history. Cookies are little bits of information that store the details of your
past searches, and companies will raise the prices of their products based on that info.
If you want to get the best price, clear your browser history and your cookies.
To clear your cookies on Google Chrome:
• Click the menu button on the toolbar (It should be on the right, and will
look like three lines)
• Click on Settings
• Click “Show Advanced Settings”
• Find the “Privacy” section, then click on “Content Settings”
• Find the “Cookies” section, then click on “Delete Cookies”
To clear your cookies on Firefox:
• Click on the menu button on the toolbar (three short lines)
• Click on “History”
• Click on “Clear Recent History”
• Change the time range to “Everything”
• Click the arrow next to “Details”
• Select “Cookies”
• Click “Clear Now”
Another tip for online shopping is to purchase items as a guest user instead of signing
into an account because companies often offer better prices to new customers.
3. SKIP THE COFFEE SHOP.
You’ve probably heard this one before, but it’s an easy money-saving hack that
really works. If you are stopping by your local coffee shop every day to get your
caffeine boost, chances are you are spending at least $3 to $5 every time.
Simple math will tell you that doing this five times a week will cost you around
$100 bucks a month, and that’s not including weekends or afternoon coffee runs.
If you brew your coffee at home every morning, it will cost you about 25 cents
per cup and save you more than a thousand dollars every year.
4. CUT UP YOUR CREDIT CARDS.
The thought of cutting up your credit cards might seem ridiculous, but it will
make life so much easier every month. When you are swiping a credit card, you
are using money you don’t have and then paying interest on top of it.
If you are using a credit card to buy your morning coffee, you should add about
21 percent interest to the price of that tall mocha frappuccino. Unless you are
paying off your cards every month, interest is constantly accruing. And, if you are
making late payments, there are even more fees.
Credit cards might seem like a good idea, but they are bringing your financial
life nothing but trouble. The same thing can be said for anything you finance.
With the exception of taking out a mortgage, using credit to purchase things like
furniture, appliances, and cars is causing your wallet to literally leak cash.
This trick goes hand-in-hand with number one. If you simply make a budget every
month, use cash for daily expenses, and cut up your credit cards, your financial
life will change in ways you never thought possible.
5. MAKE A GROCERY LIST.
How many times have you walked into the grocery store with the goal of purchasing
just a few necessary items, but then walked out with so many shopping bags full
of stuff it takes you multiple trips from the car to get everything in the house?
It happens more often than people realize, and those trips to the store are costing
you a fortune. But, if you take a couple of minutes to look through your kitchen
and write down the things you actually need, you will spend a lot less.
Focusing on the list helps you to avoid drifting through the store and throwing
things into your cart. And now, many stores offer grocery pick-up, which will force
you to stick with your list of necessities, and then you can avoid going into the