10 Resources to Help You Spend Less in 2011

by Erin, The $5 Dinner Mom on January 3, 2011

When it comes to money, I am from the “spend less” camp.

Save more.

Spend less.

I’m about spending less.

While saving more and spending less really mean the same thing, the spend less has an implication that isn’t within save more.

Save more speaks to the fact that you are saving money, but it doesn’t speak to the part about how much you spend.  You can save a lot of money while still spending a lot, lot, lot of money.

Spend less speaks to the fact that you are saving money, but it also implies that there is (and should be) a limit to how much you spend.  It implies that you are working within a set budget, a cash budget.

Examples…

1. I spend $150 on $500 worth of products from the grocery store. I save $350, but I spend $150. And I have a lot of products to deal with.

2. I spend $60 on $150 worth of products from the grocery store. I save $90, but I only spend $60. I didn’t save more, but I spent less. And only got what I needed for the week, plus a little for the stockpile.

Catch my drift?!

I would encourage you to start looking at your money and your finances from a “spend less” perspective, but the “spend less” mentality into action…and see how much $$$ you have leftover at the end of the month.

A few resources to help you spend less…

Personal Finance

  • Mint.com – A free and intelligent online money management software. (We use it for our personal finances! Highly recommend!)
  • Daily Worth – a personal finance newsletter for women. (I subscribe…and really enjoy the information…keeps me in the know!)

Coupons

  • Coupons.com – print coupons from the Coupons.com website to help you spend less.
  • Cellfire – register your store loyalty card and load it up with “electronic” coupons for the products you love in the grocery store. These coupon amounts are deducted from your total grocery bill.
  • Upromise – register your store loyalty card and load it up with “electronic” coupons.
  • Groupon – There’s a reason this is the latest rage. If you’re smart about how you use your Groupons, they can certainly help you spend less!

Meal Planning

So I forgot how to count…that’s 11, really 12. But whatever…you’ll be well on your way to spending less of your hard earned dollars!

A

{ 12 comments… read them below or add one }

Sarah (Frontier Kitchen) January 3, 2011 at 12:08 pm

We use Mint.com for our finances too – it’s fabulous! We have it set up to send us texts when we get over budget in any of the categories and it sends me a weekly one with our account balance amounts listed. Those texts are great reminders to spend less. :)

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Marianne @ The New Frugal Mom January 3, 2011 at 4:47 pm

I’m right there with ya, babe. Spending less and/or setting financial limits (like a budget!) really has a way of freeing you. Less stuff to deal with, less deals & coupons to track down, less TIME wasted on buying/consuming/accumulating.

;-)

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Ashley January 3, 2011 at 5:41 pm

I also very highly recommend mint.com. It just became available in Canada a little over a month ago, and I’ve been using it since. I love it!

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ACMommy January 4, 2011 at 8:22 pm

Thank you very much for this post – I needed to read it, it’s awesome to be inspired during the very first week of 2011!

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Cindy January 5, 2011 at 2:24 pm

thank you you for all the info! very helpful!

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Nicole January 8, 2011 at 7:38 am

I’ve been looking into Mint.com as I think it might be good for a very visual person like me. ie: graphs and charts, not just a spreadsheet. DH has concerns over the security, that the site has access into your accounts. Anybody want to share some thoughts or experience with that? Whether that fear was abated, etc.? Thanks!

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Virginia Dickman-Lopez February 1, 2011 at 9:52 am

Hi Nicole,

We’ve used Mint and while you do grant mint access to your personal accounts its really just for the live updates so you know everything in real time. Mint actually only logs into your banking accounts after you’ve signed in to mint.com to check up on your budgets, finances, etc. and you can actually watch it load. It made me a little nervous the first time through but it really was not a big deal at all after the initial setup. It’s more like “view only” access so it’s not as bad as it sounds. I liked mint but I’m not so big on logging on online everyday or week so I still keep an oldschool excel and written budget instead but the real time is helpful for a lot of folks out there! I also highly recommend Financial Peace University (Dave Ramsey) – best financial advice ever! :)

God Bless!

Virginia

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Andrea January 8, 2011 at 7:39 pm

Thanks for the great reminders!

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Melinda @ Trailing After God January 9, 2011 at 12:04 am

I am SO glad to have found your site! I want to make cheaper meals, which I am pretty good at but $5 meals will be fantastic to have in my back pocket so to speak :) I’m now following you so I don’t lose track of your site. Thanks for all the helpful tips and links! We HAVE to save in 2011.

Blessings,
Mel
Please feel free to stop by: Trailing After God

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Rachel January 14, 2011 at 10:19 am

Thanks for the links- will definitely be checking them out!

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Alisa January 19, 2011 at 3:28 am

Thanks for this post. This is very useful. I will tell my friend about this post too.

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