Budget Tips – By Birmingham Moms!

The economy has, well…shrank.  My budget right along with it.  But we’re pulling through – we’re staying positive and we’re working harder than ever to stretch our dollars.  I’ve managed to clean up my spending and make (almost) every dollar count toward a bright future for my family.  I try to keep the long-term in mind as I make spending decisions and I think it’s working for us.  We asked our readers for some of their best budgeting secrets – this is what they had to share:

Reader Lee F. had this to say:

We learned this in Dave Ramsey. Use cash. If you take 100 dollars into Costco then that is all you can spend. Really works.
Reader Brandy B. had this to say:

I never buy anything full price and We always look online before we just got in a store to buy something. It is crazy at how much you can save just buy checking around.  I try to buy store brands but some things I just can’t. If it is not a store brand I go to the company’s website and get a coupon for that certain item. It is great that most of them are now on social networks and we can get coupons through email.
Reader and Contributor Amber B had this to say:

I limit trips to the store–I try to do a meal plan then list out the ingredients I’ll need all week. Going multiple times always means I buy additional junk!!
Reader April B. had this to say:

We keep a detailed spreadsheet, and update it daily to ensure that it corresponds with the checking account. It is tedious but we know how we spend every dime.
Reader and Contributor Rebecca J. Had this to say:

I find lots of ideas based on good, old-fashioned Yankee frugality at
Reader Jane W. had this to say:

If I can’t pay cash …i don’t need it…it works!!! Also during the year i save all my change so when Christmas rolls around I have at least 500 dollars or more to spend..I’ve been doing that for a few years now.
Reader (and Bargain Queen – I know her!) Alexis M. had this to say:

second hand shopping, coupons, and discount stores!
Reader Kate A. had this to say:

Just the obvious, like spending time to meal plan, and matching coupons with weekly special discounts etc…

One other hint is in regard to medical bills. If you have a larger medical bill looming, most hospitals and doctors offices will give you a discount off of it if you ask them and tell them you’ll pay it all at once! In both births of my children we literally saved hundreds of dollars by doing this.

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