When it comes to hanging on to more of your cash, it's the small changes that make the biggest difference over the long haul. Start with these simple ideas.
- Smell the Roses, Buy the Daisies
Flowers from a florist run about three times the price of simpler arrangements at the grocery store. The question isn't, Are the florist flowers three times as good? But, rather, Will they make her three times as happy?
- Order Water
Tea or a soft drink can cost upwards of $2.50 each at restaurants. Choose water twice and you've covered the price of an adult beverage. Three times and you've got yourself an appetizer.
- Check Receipts
Hey, mistakes happen. So make it a habit to check your receipts to ensure you didn't get gouged for something you didn't get.
- Negotiate Everything
From your cell-phone plan to getting your A/C replaced, any time is a good time to bring the haggle.
- Pass on Premium
If you're making drinks, consider skipping the premium brands. It's unlikely you or your guests will notice the difference — especially with mixed drinks — and the switch can save you several dollars per bottle.
- Get Over Overdrafting
Keep to your budget and keep your checkbook up-to-date. And find a bank that offers overdraft protection: a connected account that acts as a penalty-free safety net in the event you overdraw.
- Diamond Deals
Half of diamond classifications include flaws that are only noticeable under 10x magnification to a trained professional. If you're considering a premium-priced "flawless" diamond, ask yourself if it's for your girl or the bragging rights.
- Brown-Bag It
You don't want to rock the lunch box every day. Understandable. But run the numbers for bringing lunch just once a week: $10 per meal saved over 50 weeks equals $500 a year. That's a chunk of cash.
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