If you are in a budgetary bind or simply frugally minded, there are a lot of things that you can make at home to save money.
Eating out is a big expense for a lot of families, probably because it’s so convenient. However, taking your lunch to work and dining at home otherwise can save you a lot of cash. So can making your own coffee, bread, hummus, dips, salad dressings, granola, and pre-cooked side dishes like pasta salads.
However, making your own baked goods (cakes, cookies, etc.) at home is the best way to save money because they cost far more at the store than they do to make yourself. The good news here that websites like Budget Bytes can be great spots for finding economical recipes.
Millennials have been accused of killing the market for paper towels and napkins, probably with good reason. It just doesn’t make sense to buy things that you constantly have to replace when you could reuse the same clothes over and over again.
Although household cleaning supplies may not eat up a big percentage of your budget, these items can still be quite costly. Using a solution that’s half vinegar and half water is a cheaper, more environmentally friendly way to keep your house clean. You can also clean your oven overnight with a simple ammonia solution for a lot less than most commercial products.
Cherie Lowe states on her DIY blog, The Queen of Free, that you can even mix up 1 cup of Borax, 1 cup of baking soda, and ½ cup of Oxiclean to make a cheaper laundry detergent. Use one tablespoon per laundry load. She also makes dishwashing soap by combining 1 box of baking soda, 1 box of Borax, 3 cups of Epsom salt, and 24 packets of unsweetened lemonade mix to save some cash.
Most gardening blogs have their own recipes for weed and bug killers as well as homemade fertilizers. These tend to cost you a fraction of what you would spend on pre-made products at the store. There are also numerous other blogs that provide you with homemade recipes for various other household products.
Holiday DIY = Savings
If you have kids, making their Halloween costumes at home is a good way to save some cash. If you lack sewing skills, you could still head to the nearest consignment store to get the basics. Then all you’ll probably need is a few items to complete the look. Besides, homemade costumes tend to be more durable and last longer in dress-up boxes than premade ones.
Basic holiday staples like Christmas tree ornaments and room decorations can also be somewhat cheaper if you choose to make them yourself rather than purchase them. The key here is to not go overboard with extras or you can end up racking up a tab rather than saving money. Likewise, homemade cards for any occasion are a great deal cheaper and more heartfelt than the ones you can buy at the store.
Homemade Beauty Products
Basic face scrubs, hair masks, and other beauty related products can even be made from supplies that you probably already have in your house. These can be cheaper than the ones you find in the store and there are plenty of recipes available online. Just exercise caution, particularly when it comes to putting unfamiliar ingredients on your face. (Allergic reactions are certainly possible.)
Of course, if you are feeling particularly adventurous and you have the time, you might want to consider making things like soap, dog food, toothpaste, and deodorant at home as well.
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