Canadian Money Forum banner

1 - 20 of 49 Posts
T

·
Guest
Joined
·
0 Posts
saving ideas

Borrowing from friends is another great idea

I needed a bike pump and asked around for it. I mean sure I cant do this all the time but it gives me time to save up for a new bike pump when i get paid next.

Here is MDJ's list of how to save money.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
34 Posts
I've saved a ton of $$$ this year by returning to line drying clothing it really doesn't take that much more time to do in fact I hang shirts on hangers so they are ready to go straight to the closet.
For long distance calls I use a phone card you can get really good rates from them.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
25 Posts
Have company over, rather than going out.

Going out for supper with friends can kill you, especially if you factor in tips, movie/activity, and desert.

We've realized that if we invest in some enjoyable board games, we can have people over, and save ourselves a lot of money. Then you are actually interacting with people rather than staring at a wall with changing images. By the way, if you are huge into popcorn, check out those old electric poppers. They work great, and popcorn kernels are uber cheap.

P.S. Find a cheap, quality online retailer rather than expensive stores that double the prices on these games.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
419 Posts
We furnished our (new) home entirely on second-hand furniture. Some of the stuff was barely used and got a lot of compliments from our guests. Sites that i frequent all the time (and I hope posting links are OK) include

- usedottawa.com

- craigslist.org

- kijiji.ca

- and RedFlagDeals's BST forum.

I learnt to be a better bargainer along the way and we saved a lot because there is a high markup on new furniture and we also didn't have to pay taxes.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
20 Posts
You already pay for the library through your taxes, so make use of it! There's so much good information and entertainment there.
I used to spend a lot of books but no more. Now you can download audiobooks onto your laptop or MP3 for free from your library. I did this when I was on vacation and rediscovered how nice it is to be read to!
Also I became a member of the library in Bayfield where I spend summers so I save on books and movies.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
140 Posts
Do you try to save money on meat by buying warehouse packs, then spend an hour splitting them up into appropriate portions when you get home? Do you hate slicing up chicken or beef? Do you have a family of carnivorous teenagers that cost you a small fortune every month? Or do you flip through a recipe book, hopelessly trying to find a dish that will work with your limited meat selection?

My tip for saving money (and time) is to get to know the butcher at a chain grocery store (Safeway, Sobeys, Save-on, but avoid Superstore/Loblaws). About 4 - 5 times a year, my mother and I make a list of all the meat we need to refill our freezers. We specify how much we want in each package, how many packages, and what kind of marinade (if desired). The butcher will accomodate many details like steak thickness, swedish-style meatballs, or cutting chicken/beef into stir-fry strips. The combined order is given to the meat department manager at a nearby Sobeys, and usually within a week we are contacted to come pick it up.

First of all we save money because the meat is all priced at "warehouse pack" pricing, regardless of the package sizes. Second, the manager will usually give a discount off the total price, but this is his own perogative and the amount seems to vary each time. And finally, because he values our continued business, he generally gives us the best cuts of meat (which I'm sure he can identify a lot better than I can). On our most recent order ($900), instead of a discount he gave us 2 huge boxes full of free meat that he needed to get out of his freezer, valued at over $200.

This tip isn't for everyone. Obviously it doesn't help vegetarians. You need to have a large freezer (mine is 17 cu ft), and it helps to have a friend or relative to combine your order with. Your local meat manager might not be so generous, though he should at least give you warehouse pack pricing.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
17 Posts
I have cut back both my office/home phone and mobile phone bill just by asking. I called Telus and told them I was considering moving over to Shaw Digital if they didn't give me the same deal. They did AND added two extra services. With my Blackberry, I had 4MB Internet usage per month. I called up to ask if there was a better deal and received 4000 MB a month for no extra charge.

Rosina
Middle Ageless
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
419 Posts
Guys, do you insulate your gas hot water tank with a blanket ? I did some research and the opinions are all over the places, some says it helps save a bit of money, some says it is a fire hazard and the newer tanks are already well-insulated.

For the record, our gas hot water tank is about 3 years old. When somebody takes shower, I touch the outside and the tank does not feel hot at all so I imagine the heat loss, if there is any, is quite minimal.

But if wrapping it with a blanket will give us more savings then I am all for it...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
305 Posts
Guys, do you insulate your gas hot water tank with a blanket ? I did some research and the opinions are all over the places, some says it helps save a bit of money, some says it is a fire hazard and the newer tanks are already well-insulated.

For the record, our gas hot water tank is about 3 years old. When somebody takes shower, I touch the outside and the tank does not feel hot at all so I imagine the heat loss, if there is any, is quite minimal.

But if wrapping it with a blanket will give us more savings then I am all for it...
If you have a gas water heater, do not cover the burner access or the flue collar. Leave about 2" of exposed area around the flue collar.

Heat loss is directly related to the temperature of the surface. I've not insulated my gas water heater. When I feel the top surface, it's hardly warm at all and I think I'd be a long time recouping the cost of the blanket.

The hot water line coming out the top is a different story. It's very hot. I've taken the 6ft of pipe insulation that comes in the free Ener-something kit and wrapped the first length of pipe. Probably saving a bit by doing that.

I'm reminded, however, of a concept called the critical radius from 3rd year heat transfer where if the insulation radius is less than a critical radius, you are better off skipping the insulation altogether because the air is actually a better insulator. I took a quick look at the figures, and it looks like you are better off to insulate the hot water pipes (although the savings will be insignificant). This concept is really nothing more than a curiosity, in all practicality.
http://rpaulsingh.com/teaching/LecturesIFE/insulation/insulate.htm
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
419 Posts
Ben, this is some advice from an accredited professional home inspector that I am quoting verbatim. I will still insulate the pipes but will leave the tank alone.

-----------------------------------------------------------------

Most hot water heaters in our area use natural gas and most are power vented. For power vented hot water tanks, the tanks are insulated. You would not normally feel significant heat when you touch the outside of an insulated water tank.

I don't advocate adding an insulation jacket as there is too much risk if this is done. Adding the jacket needs to be done in such a way that combustion air supply and fume exhaust is not hampered. For safety, any modifications to gas equipment should be done by a qualified heating technician.

I'm not sure you would see significant benefit by insultating your hot water pipes. I see the benefit of pipe wrap on cold water copper [and sometimes plastic] piping as a way o reduce sweating.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,516 Posts
Here's my list:

Get by with on one less car, if possible. Probable savings $9000 per year.

Borrow books and reserve DVDs from library. Probable savings, $600 per year.

Brew your own beer and wine. Probable savings $400 -$1000 per year.

Go with basic cable rather than packages. Probable savings $350 per year

Don't buy new technology. Wait until the bugs have been ironed out and the product has improved. Guesstimate savings $300 per year plus the satisfaction of owning superior products.

Get some of your entertainment from free or low cost community recreation - cross country ski trails, toboggan hills, local waterways for kayaking/canoeing, local festivals, hiking trails, parks. Guesstimate savings $200 - $600 per year.

This one is not for everyone, but we don't find a need for cellphones. There are phones at work, at schools, at restaurants, pay phones at shopping centers and plus everyone else seems to have cellphones. - Probable savings $400-$1000 per year(based on 2 phones).

A final note. Don't cut back on anything that brings true enjoyment in relation to the money spent (including the things on my list). For example, with all our savings, we like to occasionally travel to France.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
17 Posts
I buy a lot of things on eBay, usually at half price or less. Although this won't appeal to male readers, I buy my expensive ($49) Lancome foundation in the HUGE cosmetic counter tester size for $25. It contains at least eight times more product. I have a mail box across the border and buy all my health supplements from Iherb.com at half or two-thirds the cost up here. I always declare at the border and am nearly always allowed through without having to pay GST. I guess this isn't very green as we have to drive down there. Nor is it in the national interest but it does save $. I buy many medical products/drugs through AllDayChemist.com. Lumigan eyelash growth product sells fro $150 or so through your doctor but the drops are $12.50 through ADC and their customer service is superb. You can PM me for more details on how to save on the shipping. I have it down to a fine art :p

ETA: I love designer jeans and buy my favourites on eBay or from The Gilt Groupe. I know my size in my favourite brand and always find them online at way less than half price. (Got my fave Habitual Skinny Glories from the Gilt Groupe sale for $48. They are usually around $240.) The Gilt Groupe has designer sales every day of the week and you have to sign up. They come online at noon and you have a certain peiod of time to hold your purchases in your cart before they are released for someone else. If you KNOW what you want (like my jeans) and are not tempted by other goodies, you can get all the best brands at a fraction of the cost.

Rosina
Middle Ageless
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
305 Posts
I buy many medical products/drugs through AllDayChemist.com. Lumigan eyelash growth product sells fro $150 or so through your doctor but the drops are $12.50 through ADC and their customer service is superb. You can PM me for more details on how to save on the shipping. I have it down to a fine art :p
Middle Ageless
Eyelash growth product? Really? The world is a funny place.

For a thread on how to save money, spending any amount of money growing a dandy set of eyelashes seems a little out of place...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
17 Posts
Ben, with respect, I have many associates (frugal and not-so-frugal) who are spending huge amounts of money on Botox, fillers and eyelash growth products. Cosmetic enhancement is one of the largest growing sectors for "disposable" income in my age group, and this goes for men too. I know many, many women who would let a mortgage payment go rather than their Botox, and these are professionals. So, I mentioned the Bimatoprost product (Lumigan) as it may be that some of these woman are lurking on this board and might benefit from not spending exhorbitant amounts at their local medi-spa or doctor's office.
 
1 - 20 of 49 Posts
Top