Smart Reasons to Save, Use and Invest Money

How To Save Money By Cost Control

How to Save Money by Cost Control is a discovery process.  One of my debt free goals was to save money with great passion since I’m part of the Million Dollar Club! 

After I became totally debt free by paying off my mortgage, this past February, I was very excited about being able to sock away an extra $1,500 a month into savings and investments.   I imagined myself every quarter of this year, plopping almost $5,000 into a balanced mutual fund or ETF. 

So how much extra money have I saved up for investing?  nada, nil… nothing at all.  Now, I knew that I would have an adjustment period at the beginning, that would stun my initial investing plan, but I didn’t see it lasting this long! 

I’ve learned that Cost Control, is the new root of my saving problems.  You see, when you have more money in your checkbook, it’s easier to justify getting the more expensive or quicker product. 

Here are examples where my cost control wasn’t in place:

  •  My old Lawnmower (Mean Green) was finally forced out of action (I’ll blog in greater detail about Mean Green some other time).  But instead of looking at Craigslist for one or buying a cheap model from Lowes, I went out and bought a new Toro self-propelled (variable speed) lawnmower! 

    My new lawnmower (called Red) is spectacular!  I love it, but I also spent about $375.00 dollars on it.  To me this seems a bit pricey! 

    In the days when I still had a mortgage, I would have went out and bought a cheaper model, or bought a used lawnmower.  In fact, my boss offered to sell me a cheap used lawnboy as a replacement…  But I declined.
    I’m sure if I put my mind and efforts to it, I could have found a lawnmower for at least half the price.  
      
      

     

  • Car problems.  My wife’s car was experiencing a car problem.  So what did I do?  I call my favorite mechanic and asked him to get it in today and fix it.  My mechanic is great, so that was exactly when he did, but it cost me $450 dollars. Now you might be thinking what is so bad about this?  Well, we have a few friends that are auto mechanics.  We could have waited and had one of our buddies look at the car and fix it for a lot cheaper!  After the fact, my one buddy told me that he could have cleaned the part and that might have made it work.  He said he would have done it for free.  So I paid a premium to get it fixed that day!  It would have taken my friend at least 5 or so days to get to it.     

  • Changing the oil on the car.  I haven’t done this in years!  It’s easy enough to do, but I always convince myself that it’s not work the time and energy (and perhaps it’s not).  Some people may say, yeah but what about the cost of oil disposal…  Well, you can drive your old used oil to any Walmart car service department and they will take it off of your hands for free!  It’s possible to created a paper funnel and pour the oil into a plastic 1 gallon  milk container,  then put the plastic cap on to keep the fumes contained.   I have used the milk jug trick for the oil changes I did performed on my old lawnmower and snow thrower.     

If you stay focused and realize that you are wasting money by doing such as I have above…  You can save money by using more focused cost control! 

Have you every mode impromptu decisions that you knew weren’t the best, but because you had the money to do them, you did them anyway? 

-MR

14 Responses to How To Save Money By Cost Control

  1. This is nice information about the to save a money.it is very essentially examples to save a money .There are many ideas whereby we can save money such as If you are in the market for a new car, you definitely should consider fuel efficiencies. However I wouldn’t buy a hybrid just for the better fuel economy if I weren’t in the market for a new car.

  2. Don’t forget that time is a valuable commodity too– often more important than money.

    What’s the point of being debt free if you can’t eliminate hassle for yourself? Sure a million dollars would be nice, but do you really dislike your current employment to feel guilty about getting a $375 lawnmower that you really like? Or not waiting 5 days to get a working car (plus you have to call in a favor for a friend)?

    Sure, when you still have high interest debt you can’t really afford these kinds of luxuries, but at what point do you allow yourself to stop feeling guilty? Is it a million? Ten million? After you’re dead?

    So, to answer the question, maybe I’m just crotchety this morning, but I have no regrets on past spending and do not intend to have regrets on future spending. I will continue making well-considered purchases, and if that means something expensive that I love instead of something cheap that would give me a headache and take time, so be it. If things don’t work out with a purchase, then that is a learning experience and it’s only money.

  3. @Lancy Blatt
    That a good point. 10 years ago, I would definitely focus on car price, fuel efficiency and maintenance costs. But now (and I’m sure with many others) I might focus more on style and safety factors…

  4. Money Reasons – don’t even think of changing oil in your car yourself again! Go have the pros do it and they can check your tires and all the other fluids.

    You worked hard to become debt free, now reap some of the rewards of it.

    My saving has taken a back seat lately as summer fun hit our bank account hard, and also, both our home computer died this summer. It seems like something always seems to come up.

  5. @Nicole
    Good point! Perhaps I could be spending that time learning more about business, etc.

    I’m trying to save as much money are I can for both investments and a trip to either Hawaii or Europe in 2011 or 2012. I’d eat ramen noodles for a year at lunch, if it enabled me to go to one of the 2 locations above!

    You’ve identified the difference between frugal and cheap with that last paragraph! Cheap is buying the cheapest product, and then trying to make it work as long as possible. Frugal is buy a product that has the greatest return over a certain number of year (or timeframe in general)…

    I believe financial independence is a personal money ratio, but I’d say roughly 2 million would make me loosen the purse strings. Actually, I’m pretty loose with the purse strings already when it comes to my kids… I’m a strange duck that way… 🙂

  6. @Everyday Tips
    Sorry to hear that, especially about the computers!

    Your right, I’ll shelf that idea of changing my car oil myself (I use to do it when I was high school and college ages).

    Thinking about it a bit longer, I realize that I shop at Walmart while I get my oil changed there, so I maximize my time which is a huge win! Time has become a valuable resource for me anymore.

    Hope you had a great Labor Day weekend 🙂

  7. I just paid $100 to have my guest bathroom toilet fixed when I could have done it myself for $40 or had our family friend look at it for $60 (I’d cover his gas too)…I just never got around to doing anything about it, so I spent extra to get it off my to-do list.

  8. Cost control takes a very disciplined action of transpiring worthy expenses. Car problems generates an expensive preposition that is why car analysis is a must in order to control at least the possible problems that may occur and plan for the resolution as early as possible.

  9. Really nice tips on how to save money. I, also, goes to a mechanic to have my car fix. I do not have any friends who can help me out. However, my mechanic has really done a great job and I have really maintained the car good.

  10. Where did you hear about ‘Cost Control’?

    That’s probably why they suggest having everything automatically diverted before it even hits your bank account – that way you’re forced to readjust to the deal using only the “remaining” funds.

  11. @FinEngr
    The wording “Cost Control”, just seemed like the logical phrase to use in my scenario…

    Yeah, I do like to have everything as automated as possible. I guess I’ll have to do the same with the extra money in the budget now too. Sad that I can’t control my money better 🙁 At least I realize I got to lazy. I guess the honeymoon is over now and I’ll buckle down again!

  12. Every body is earing money, but it’s the savings and investments in time that count One should make investments in a safe and sane manner. Before deciding to invest money, one should set aside their daily and monthly expenditure. One should also set aside the necessary amount to pay for any bills at the end of the month. Only a percentage of the monthly income should go in investments. Simply put, the amount put out for long or short term investments should not affect your daily lifestyle or liquidity.