Use This, Not That: Simple Money-Saving Switches

Posted on 06/24/2011

If someone asked you to give up your car, cable TV or coffee completely just to save money you may not be willing to do it. But simpler switches can have a major economic impact on households.

Use Rags, Not Paper Towels - Paper towels can have many uses in the American household. We use them for everything from dusting to dinner napkins. But choosing this disposable product instead of opting for a reusable option could be costing you more than you think. One blogger estimates her family can save $1,000 in five years by giving up paper towels. It’s good for your pocketbook and the planet.

Use Generics, Not Brand Name - Unless you’re an extreme couponer, you can probably save more money by switching to generics. Just on cereal alone you can save up to $3 a box by opting for the store brand.

Use Cold Water, Not Hot - Using cold water to wash your clothes gets them just as clean, but doesn’t use as much energy. That’s because your water heater requires gas or electricity to heat up water for each load. By making this simple switch you’ll save more than $100 a year, according to experts.

Use Movie Rental Kiosks, Not Stores - Renting a new release movie from a Blockbuster video store can cost more than $4. Find a Redbox or Blockbuster Express kiosk in your area and you’ll get to see the same movies for just $1 a night.

Use Filtered, Not Bottled - If you fill reusable water bottles with filtered tap water instead of buying bottles from the grocery store you’ll save more than $800 a year. Plus you’ll be saving about 30 pounds of plastic from ending up at the dump.

Order Coffee with Cream, Not Lattes - Starbucks stores typically charge less than $2 for a grande cup of regular joe and they’ll give you the milk or creamer for free. Order a latte which is espresso with milk and you’ll pay more than twice that for the same amount of liquid. Or better yet, brew your own at home.

Use Online Bill Pay, Not Stamps - Most banks offer free online bill paying options. This means you don’t have to pay for stamps which are currently $.44 a pop. Depending on how many bills you mail each month that could equal out to about a $50 annual savings.

Use CFLs, Not Traditional Bulbs - According to, if every American home replaced just one light with a light that's earned the ENERGY STAR, we would save enough energy to light 3 million homes for a year and save about $600 million in annual energy costs. How does that translate for your household? One bulb swapped out can save about $40 in electricity over its lifetime.

By Alison Storm

Land's End coupon - One great money saver? Buy high-quality clothes that'll last you for years with proper care - but buy them on sale! Save 25% sitewide with coupon code SAVE25 and PIN # 9226 through 06/27/2011.

Macy's coupon - Hit up the summer sales on home goods and clothes for the whole family at Macy's, and save up to an extra 20% on your order with coupon code HOTONE through 06/26/2011.

* Hot deals expire quickly. This deal may no longer be valid.



Posted on 07.20.11 at 10:08 AM

Great tips, and so true. Simple switches can net you huge rewards. Thank you!

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