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10 WAYS TO LOWER YOUR MONTHLY EXPENSES

Updated: Feb 10

Do you feel like there is no possible way of reducing your monthly expenses? Many people struggle making ends meet and often feel overwhelmed by the end of the month. OHC believes that everyone could benefit from reducing their monthly expenses and we want to show you how.



10 Ways to Lower Your Monthly Expenses


1. Buy unbranded products

You may only be saving pennies per item, but there really isn’t much difference in the taste—do not be seduced by pretty branding! The only difference, for example with unbranded tinned tomatoes and branded ones, is the lack of salt and sugar and you can add that yourself. Why pay loads extra for it?[i]


2. Reevaluate your expenses

What monthly bills and expenses could you lower or even cut out of your life? Things like phone bills, insurance, interest rates and cable. One good way to lower your monthly bills is to call your service provider and ask if there are any lower rates you are eligible for, or if they have any sales or promotions going on. Reevaluate your other expenses, like cable, and ask yourself if it really is a necessity. Do you really need cable, or is it just something you’ve always had and thought you would always have? Ask yourself if you could cancel your cable (I know you can!) then find free things to fill your time up with instead of watching TV.[ii]


3. Refinance your student loans

If your monthly student loan payment is too high, one option to lower it is to refinance your student loans. Through this process, you take out a loan from a private lender for the amount of your current loans. The new loan has a different interest rate, repayment term, and monthly payment. If you qualify for a lower rate or extend your repayment term, you could dramatically reduce your monthly bill. For example, let’s say you had $35,000 in student loans at 7% interest, and had 10 years left in your repayment term. With those terms, your minimum payment would be $406. If you refinanced that debt and qualified for a loan at 4% interest and extended your repayment term to 15 years, your payment would drop to just $259. That means you’d have nearly $150 extra in your budget each month.[iii]


4. Sell a vehicle

If a vehicle you own is rarely used, consider selling it. If nothing else, you’ll save money on insurance. If you’re able to get market price for your vehicle, you could also use the proceeds to beef up your savings account or pay off high-interest debt.[iv]


5. Cook at home

While eating out and services like GrubHub and Seamless are convenient (and tasty!), they can cost hundreds of dollars each month. You can save a significant amount of money — and get healthier — by cooking at home. Preparing your own meals and bringing your own lunch to work can help you save thousands over the course of a year.[v]


6. Shop around for new insurance

If you haven’t shopped around for homeowners or auto insurance lately, now’s a good time to get a few quotes, especially if your credit is strong. If you can save a substantial amount and maintain your current level of coverage, it’s well worth switching to another provider — but give your current one a chance to match their quote. Most insurance companies also offer a good discount if you bundle your homeowners and auto policies together. If you currently use two separate insurers, ask what kind of discount each would offer if you bundled the policies together.[vi]


7. Cancel unused subscriptions

The internet makes it easy to sign up for monthly subscriptions for streaming services and apps. While many of these services are low-cost, they can add up and consume a large portion of your monthly budget. You likely don’t even use all of the services that you pay for.[vii]


8. Consider cheaper childcare options

We paid a lot of money for our childcare, but there were other good options available to us. Compare childcare options in your area to see if a cheaper alternative would be a better value. Or get creative in trying to cut back your existing childcare by a day or two — for instance, look into a nanny-share arrangement, or try working a later shift once a week so you can be home during the day. If you’re lucky enough to live near grandparents, they might be willing to watch the kids part-time while you work.[viii]


9. Go shopping with a list

Whether you’re just running to the hardware store or you’re going grocery shopping, always go shopping with a list. I never go shopping without a list – unless I know that I am running into the store for ONE THING and I know exactly where it is in the store so I don’t go wandering down various aisles and end up leaving the store with way more stuff than I intended to buy. Shopping with a list helps you avoid any aisles you don’t need to go down and helps you only grab what you really need – no more grabbing stuff just in case you’re running low at home, but you really can’t remember.[ix]


10. Cut out the pricey drinks

Perhaps you don’t drink much, but for a lot of people, spending a good proportion of their monthly salary on expensive boozy nights out is part of their monthly regime. If this rings true, try cutting back or going alcohol-free for a month to see how much you save.[x]

[i] 30 Ways to Cut Your Monthly Expenses, Lifehack Editorial Team, accessed 23 August 2019, < https://www.lifehack.org/articles/money/30-ways-cut-your-monthly-expenses.html >

[ii] 8 Ways to Lower Your Monthly Expenses by $500.00, Deliberately Here Editorial Team, accessed 23 August 2019, <https://deliberatelyhere.com/ways-to-lower-your-monthly-expenses/>

[iii] 10 Ways to Trim Your Monthly Expenses, Kat Tretina, accessed 23 August 2019, < https://www.magnifymoney.com/blog/pay-down-my-debt/ways-to-trim-your-monthly-expenses/>

[iv] 40 Ways to Save Money on Monthly Expenses, Trent Hamm, accessed 23 August 2019, <https://www.thesimpledollar.com/trimming-the-fat-forty-ways-to-reduce-your-monthly-required-spending/>

[v] 10 Ways to Trim Your Monthly Expenses, Kat Tretina, accessed 23 August 2019, < https://www.magnifymoney.com/blog/pay-down-my-debt/ways-to-trim-your-monthly-expenses/>

[vi] 40 Ways to Save Money on Monthly Expenses, Trent Hamm, accessed 23 August 2019, <https://www.thesimpledollar.com/trimming-the-fat-forty-ways-to-reduce-your-monthly-required-spending/>

[vii] 10 Ways to Trim Your Monthly Expenses, Kat Tretina, accessed 23 August 2019, < https://www.magnifymoney.com/blog/pay-down-my-debt/ways-to-trim-your-monthly-expenses/>

[viii] 40 Ways to Save Money on Monthly Expenses, Trent Hamm, accessed 23 August 2019, <https://www.thesimpledollar.com/trimming-the-fat-forty-ways-to-reduce-your-monthly-required-spending/>

[ix] 8 Ways to Lower Your Monthly Expenses by $500.00, Deliberately Here Editorial Team, accessed 23 August 2019, <https://deliberatelyhere.com/ways-to-lower-your-monthly-expenses/>

[x] 30 Ways to Cut Your Monthly Expenses, Lifehack Editorial Team, accessed 23 August 2019, < https://www.lifehack.org/articles/money/30-ways-cut-your-monthly-expenses.html >

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