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10 Ways to Treat Yo Self on a Budget

Updated on February 11, 2016

10. Take Advantage of LivingSocial/Groupon Deals

Even though some Living Social/Groupon deals might seem a little out there like scuba diving in DC or half off of a full car wash, you can still take advantage of some great events. LivingSocial even sponsors their own events like "Drink the District" or local sports events. If you can get three people for the event, the fourth person is free. So, you can reduce your cost by 25% a person. You can even extend your LivingSocial deals with promo codes from sites like

9: Thrift Stores and Habitat for Humanity

Macklemore couldn't have have said it better when looking for the best prices for clothes-- thrift stores are a prime location. However, most people think that thrift stores can only offer used clothes, but many of them have used appliances, books, furniture, electronics, etc. at a fraction of the price. Who cares if that microwave is a little dirty or that dresser requires some small repairs? It can mean a lot of savings for big price items.

Unique Thrift Store (Thrift Store Chain)
Unique Thrift Store (Thrift Store Chain)

Habitat for Humanity

Habitat for Humanity is a well-known non-profit that provides housing to people that are in need. Many people donate money to Habitat for Humanity, but the organization also receives a lot of donated materials that can be used for the houses they create. However, not all of these donated materials can be used for building and that's where ReStore comes in. ReStore is Habitat for Humanity's home improvement and donation center that sells all the donations that can't be used and uses those profits to go toward supplies that they actually need. ReStores are perfect locations to find new and used material, tools, and furniture for renovations or additions. These items are at a reduced cost to undercut stores like Home Depot and Lowes.

ReStore: Habitat For Humanity
ReStore: Habitat For Humanity

8. Try Doing it Yourself

Usually a lot of time and money can be saved by outsourcing jobs that we have no experience or knowledge of. But, with some DIY demo videos, practice, and maybe a couple of bumps and bruises, you can take on jobs you once wasted money paying someone else to do. I'm not asking anyone to diagnose their children with Lupus, but small jobs like changing the oil, haircuts, and household repairs are a good start.

Making a rowboat with the old man.
Making a rowboat with the old man.

DIY Oil Change

7. Share Streaming Sites Within a Group

It's hard to stream every episode of all the shows you want because no streaming service ever has everything you are looking for. Paying for multiple streaming services like Netflix, Hulu Plus, and Spotify can add up. That's why it's best to share multiple media services in a group.

If each person in your group pays for one service, then everyone in the group can have access to all the services. Netflix and Amazon Prime limit the amount of users at one time to two, while Hulu allows one user. This may seem like a problem, but with four different streaming services in a group there is a large margin of overlap between content, and a lot of different options. Not only do you get a lot of options for movies, TV, and music, but Amazon Prime offers free 2-day shipping on a lot of its inventory. So, in the wise words of Jack, "Stream Together or Bored Alone" or at least that's what I would say on an island without a TV.

6. Buy off Amazon with Free Shipping

With Amazon Prime not only do you get media streaming, but you also get free unlimited 2-day shipping on Amazon's inventory included with your membership. Enough Said.

Amazon Shipping Warehouse
Amazon Shipping Warehouse

5. Workout at Home

Almost everyone knows the struggle of keeping up with going to the gym. Either the issue is cost, time, or the fact that when you get home you barely have enough energy to make it to bed. Working out at home is a good substitute for the gym. You don't need to worry about paying for the costly gym fees every month. You can workout at home without equipment and without weights.

4. Etsy

If you haven't heard of Etsy, then you have been missing out on crazy kitten sweaters and vintage alpaca fur vests. Etsy is how I imagine the internet would look if it hosted a flea market. It has loads of people trying to sell assortments of vintage or handcrafted items.


You can find a lot of items that are much cheaper than name brand. However, some Etsy suppliers have highly over-priced items so it's necessary to do some research before any big purchases.

3. Stream New Movies

"Popcorn Time" is a new app that's available for Windows/Mac platforms that streams free TV and movies to users. The program searches torrents for your content and downloads while you stream. The best feature of "Popcorn Time" is that it can stream to Apple TV and Chromecast.

2. Taking the Bus

It's hard to find a cheap flight, especially when you're not going far. Buses like Megabus and BoltBus offer rides at prices as low as $20 from New York to DC. They also provide outlets and wifi for the trip. But, beware! The closer you get to the date, the higher the price. Just don't forget to bring your neck pillow.

Inside of a Boltbus
Inside of a Boltbus

1. Wait for Those Big Items

Instead of getting those high-priced items when you want, it's best to wait for that time of the year when they're at their lowest price. Distributors know when you want those special items and they're willing to charge you through the nose for it. That's why it's best to wait when stores are trying to get those inventories off their shelves quickly.

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