5 DIY tricks for saving nickels, dimes and dollars

With a little effort, anyone can save money throughout the month to set aside for retirement, pay off bills faster, or to put in an account for a trip or special item. Here are some top D.I.Y. ways to hold onto a few extra nickels, dimes and dollars with minimal effort.

5 DIY tricks for saving nickels, dimes and dollars

1. Seal your home in winter

Sealing those draft-producing gaps and cracks is an easy way to save on your energy bill during the cold winter months.

Install weatherstripping on windows and doors, and use caulk to seal larger gaps at joints and around vents and piping.

2. Make eating out a rare treat

Eating out too much at restaurants, while convenient, can be one of the biggest budget-drainers. Resolve to cook more at home and pack your own lunches.

Also, when making dinner, make two to three extra portions that can be frozen for future time- and budget-saving meals.

Be sure to plan meals for the week, too. With a week of planned meals, you'll always know what you'll be eating and won't be tempted to order or eat out.

3. Be planet-friendly

Some of the most budget-friendly things you can do also happen to be eco-friendly.

For example, shopping at resale stores for items like clothing and furniture keeps these things out of the landfill and saves you from paying full price. To save even more, you should also consider buying your electronics used or refurbished from reputable online sellers.

4. Use less energy

In addition to sealing your home in winter, consider using a programmable thermostat that automatically turns down your heat when you don't need it so that you won't forget to do so manually.

Use your blinds, shutters, shades, and other window treatments strategically as well. Open them on bright, sunny days so that the heat of the sun can stream in, but close them at night and on drafty days during peak-cold temperatures.

5. Skip the lattes and expensive smoothies

When you're on the go, it can be tempting to indulge in pricey "gourmet" drinks and smoothies.

But it's better for your bottom line if you get out of this habit and instead start brewing coffee at home or at work and drinking it from a washable travel mug. You can also start making your own health drinks at home, or take portable powders on the go so that you can easily mix up a health brew with a little water.

Saving dimes and dollars

Everyone is looking for ways to save more and spend less. Use these five easy D.I.Y. tips, and you'll find yourself saving dimes and dollars throughout the year.

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