Not everyone wants to clip coupons, but everyone wants to save! Get three ways to save $3k a year without clipping coupons in this post. As someone said after they read it, “Saving pennies without counting pennies.”
For more ways to save money this year, check out all our frugal ideas.
I’m gonna be honest: Pete and I don’t count our pennies. If we go to the store and I feel like impulse buying a chocolate bar at checkout, I don’t flip out and reprimand myself. We’re allowed a treat here and there. Why? Because we make huge sacrifices in our budget so that we can save thousands of dollars a year. And when you’re saving thousands, you can spend a dollar here and there and not feel guilty about it.
Of course, we use coupons. I never go shopping without going through the ad and finding coupons first.
But not everyone wants to sit and clip coupons.
I understand that. So I put together a list of three ways to save $3,000 a year without cutting coupons.
These budget saving ideas may take a little while to get used to, but once you do, you’ll never go back to your old ways.
3 Ways To Save $3k (Without Clipping Coupons)
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Cut the cord
Pete and I don’t have cable. In fact, neither of us have ever paid for it since we’ve moved out of our parents’ homes. We do watch TV, though, completely for free.
We have a 4K UHD Smart TV in our living room, two HDTV’s upstairs (one is a newer flat screen and one is not as smart and more boxy from when HDTV’s first came out), and a small flat screen in the garage.
All different televisions, all different ages, all have digital TV antennas. They are not one of those crazy rabbit ears antennas (although we did actually have one of those on the boxy television until we upgraded).
The antennas are flat and about the same size of a piece of paper. We’re able to pick up all the basic cable channels (ABC, NBC, FOX, CBS, the CW, PBS, and more) over the air and we don’t pay a penny for it.
Plus, there are a lot of programs that you can stream online for free too, so we’re not missing anything (except a $100 a month bill!).
And keep that in mind too. Most of the basic channels have apps that allow you to stream episodes after they’ve aired. Some will allow it the next day, others make you wait a week. If you don’t mind waiting, that could be a good option for you too.
Savings: $1,200 (averaging about $100 a month)
Skip the coffee shop
I really love coffee. I went the majority of my life avoiding the stuff and in the last few years, it’s grown to be my hot beverage of choice.
But it can get expensive.
In the coffee shop, it’s about $3 for a cup of regular coffee. When I buy coffee on sale and after coupons, I usually pay $2 a bag (and one bag is 26 servings). So basically, one bag of coffee makes each cup just under 8 cents. Yes, eight little cents a cup. That’s a savings of $2.92 a cup.
Now, let’s say you’re stopping by the coffee shop every workday. That’s $15 a week or $780 a year. If you make your coffee at home for eight cents, you’re only spending $20.80 during that same time. Really, it’s a no brainer.
At home coffee recipes:
If you need a little inspiration because you don’t want a typical plain brewed cup of coffee, these at home coffee recipes might inspire you to have you cup of Joe at home.
- Super Simple Cold Brew Coffee
- Peppermint Mocha
- Coffeehouse Frappe Copycat
- Homemade Blueberry White Chocolate Mocha
Savings: about $760 a year
Cook at home
Pete and I make nearly every meal at home. He loves to cook and I love to scour Pinterest for new recipe ideas.
Making a meal at home is so much cheaper than going out to a restaurant to have it. Plus, you have control over what, exactly, you’re putting into your body. You can make sure you’re using fresh, local, or organic ingredients. You can choose healthier and lighter options too.
And you can save a lot of dough if you’re making your own dough (we actually do make our own dough).
Just a quick recent example. I made baked spaghetti, which cost me $8 for all the ingredients (spaghetti, sauce, garlic, onions, mozzarella cheese, and 20 oz. of ground turkey). It ended up being six servings for us, so about $1.25 a serving.
Let’s say we went out to dinner and ordered spaghetti. Spaghetti and meatballs at Olive Garden is $14 (I just googled the menu). For two of us, that’s $28. Plus a tip. And I hope that’s enough for leftovers, because we each ate three times on that $8 baked spaghetti.
If you eat in instead of out once a week, and you average a savings of $20 each time, that’s $1,040 a year.
If you want ideas for recipes, we have a bunch of them posted here. Be sure to pin your favorites to your Pinterest boards too, so you have the recipe handy when you’re hungry.
Tips for cooking at home:
If you want to start cooking at home, but need an entry point, you’re in luck. We have a guide: The Ultimate Guide To Saving Money By Cooking At Home. You’ll get recipes, tips on what kitchen tools you need (and which you don’t), and more.
Savings: about $1,040 a year
Total of all three tips: $1,200 + $760 + $1,040 = $3,000 a year
And that’s by just doing a little bit to save. Imagine if you made a few other life changes, like knowing your price points or using cash back apps when you shop. Your savings could really add up.
And you could put that into savings. Or treat yourself. Whatever works.
More Tips For Saving Money:
If you got this far, there’s a good chance that you’re really going to try and maximize your savings this year. That’s awesome.
We have a few more posts to help you save that will be very useful during the year.
- 10 Money Saving Tips For When You’re Traveling
- 8 Ways To Save On Winter Home Bills
- 8 Ways You Can Save Money on a Daily Basis
- 52 Week Savings Challenge (Plus two free printables)
What do you do to save money? Be sure to leave us a comment in the comments with you ideas!