The need to save money isn’t something new. For past generations, being able to get that last drop of jam out of the jar or saving every piece of newspaper to recycle or even comparing insurance to find the best car insurance quote was part of life. Many still do these things today. Something that is new, though, is the fact that technology can help us save money.
While these ideas won’t work for everyone, there’s bound to be at least one way technology can help you save money in the short or long term.
4 Money Saving Tips
1. Check Gas Prices
If you are reading this, the likelihood of you owing a car is quite high. Gas prices are rising more often than they are falling these days and one way to spend, or save, a significant amount of money is on gasoline.
- Check Prices: There are several websites that allow you to input your zip code and find out the price of gas at all of the gas stations in your town or towns nearby. You can also use calculators which will tell you if it really is a good idea to go the extra twenty miles to get gas that’s ten cents a gallon cheaper.
- Find Carpools in Your Area: Do a search in Google to find out about carpooling in your area if you can’t find coworkers who want to join in.
- Keep Your Car in Optimum Condition: There are several small maintenance tips, like keeping your tires inflated, to be done on cars which will end up saving you lots of money over the long term. If you don’t know much about cars, search online for instructions or videos which will teach you how to do these things to keep your car running at its best. It is also important to make sure your car is properly cover under your auto insurance company!
2. Buy Services and Products Online
No matter how tight your budget is, there’s always something you will need to buy like food and clothes, so take advantage of the wealth of information that is available for saving money with these three ideas.
- Group Buying Sites: Daily deal sites are popping up all over the internet and offer some great deals. However, they are only great deals if you regularly, or have already planned to, buy the item or service. Just sign up to have the deals emailed to you and wait for a good bargain to come along.
- Cash Back or Reward Point Sites: There are several sites which allow you to earn points towards gift cards by reading emails or using them to start your search. You can also join other shopping sites which, if you make your purchase through their site, will give you cash back.
- Search for Coupons: Whenever you are going to buy something, whether in a real brick and mortar store or online, don’t forget to search for printable coupons or coupon codes to save you some cash on your purchases.
3. Manage Your Finances
With steadily rising fees for banking and late or lost payments, it’s a good idea to start using technology to make sure your payments are made on time.
- Budget Software: The best way to save your money is to first see where it’s going, but the thought of taking out pen and paper to write a budget by hand turn many people against the idea. There are many software programs that allow you to just input the numbers and it will do the rest. Try it and you might find, and be able to fix, the black holes where your money mysteriously disappears.
- Banking: Save money on trips to the bank and those nasty fees, not to mention time, by doing all of your banking online. You’ll be able to check your balances at any time, day or night, and transfer money between accounts in order to prevent overdraft fees.
- Online Bill Pay: It is rare to find a utility or credit card that does not allow online bill pay in this day and age, so why not start using it. Not only will you save the stamp, or the hassle of going to the business location directly, but also reduce the chance that your check and payment slip get lost in the paper shuffle.
While this option certainly won’t work for everyone, those who are employed at a desk job and could do the same work from home, really should talk to their employer about telecommuting. Thanks to email, Twitter, Skype and cloud based document storage, you should be able to spend at least half of your working hours at home with no significant impact. In fact, most companies that allow employees to telecommute note increased productivity and job satisfaction.
You will save money on gas and car expenses, lunches out, after school child care, work clothes and dry cleaning and have more free time from the hours not spent in the car. It’s estimated that the average person spends over $130 a month just on gas driving to and from work. The total costs saved by telecommuting is said to be between $4000 and $21,000 annually, depending on your circumstances.
Now that you have more than half a dozen ways to use technology to help you save money, chose one and try it out. Don’t try them all at once or you’ll be overwhelmed. Bookmark this page and come back again next week to try out a different tip.