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Using Less To Save Money

Updated on February 14, 2007

It is very easy to waste things, especially household items. It can also be easy to use less of things as well, it just takes some thought. Do you automatically fill the container for dish detergent to the top? Do you squirt a whole handful of shampoo? Do you fill the entire cap of the laundry detergent and dump the whole amount in? If you think twice about how much you really need, you can save yourself a lot of money over time.

Most dishwashers only need one tablespoon of dish detergent. That is about 1/3 of what the compartment holds. Yet the lesser amount gets the dishes just as clean as the greater amount. A small dab of shampoo will wash your hair just as well as a huge glob. I have found that filling the cap of laundry detergent half full gets my clothes just as clean as a whole cap. If I consistently use a half cap of detergent, I will make that jug of laundry detergent last twice as long. With the price of laundry detergent I can easily save $5 or $10 each month that I don't need to buy it.

I have found that using less of things saves me money each month and reduces the amount of waste I produce each month. Many trash companies charge by the number of bags you put by the curb each week. The less trash you create, the less you will pay in fees. Speaking of trash, when my trashcan is full I pull it out and set it on the floor. There is usually plenty of room left in the bag. At this point I either look around the house for magazines or papers that need to be thrown out and add them to the bag that is almost full or I empty the bathroom trashcans into the kitchen trash bag. Then the bag is truly full. This saves in the number of trash bags we use each month, resulting in spending less money on trash bags.

You can also use less in cooking as well. Will one tablespoon of oil work just as well as two or three? Will 1/3 cup of sugar work just as well as 1/2? What about in your coffee each morning? Do you always put two spoonfulls of sugar? Try adding one and half instead. Chances are you won't notice a taste difference. And if you do, you can always add more. Putting one pat of butter on my muffin tastes the same as two. In this manner I am not only saving money, but reducing the number of unneccessary calories I eat as well. This is definitely good for my health as well as my wallet.

The same can be applied to paper products. Do you really need a huge handful of toilet paper or will a smaller amount do the job? Do you need two kleenexes to blow your nose or will one work just find? One paper towel under the browned ground beef will soak up the grease just as well as two.

So next time you are about to pour creamer in your coffee or squirt soap to wash your hands, think about how much you are using. Think about using less and seeing how it works. If less works just as well, then you just saved yourself some money. If using less of something isn't good enough and doesn't do the same job as before, then use a little more. Remember you can always add more laundry detergent, but once you put it in, you can't take it back out.


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    • Marye Audet profile image

      Marye Audet 10 years ago from Lancaster, Texas

      good points! Sugar in most recipes can be lowered by at least 1/4 c or more depending on the recipe..Certianly meat in casseroles can be cut down..and permanent solutions are good too..I like using a gold coffee filter for both my coffee making and for straining milk from our goats..