If you got a new job, or your boss said you earned a raise worth thousands of dollars annually, I'm sure you would be very happy. Now I'm going to make you as happy by showing you how to get that money by slightly tweaking your lifestyle. I'll show you that by utilizing a handful of minor suggestions you can achieve the same monetary goals, and you'll be proud of yourself for easily increasing your income or reducing your spending.

Common sense unfortunately is not very common, nor are many of the tricks I will show you. You probably will think, that is so obvious, why didn't I think of that? One of the reasons is we are creatures of habit and set in our ways. Some of the ideas listed here have been right there in front of your nose for so long, but it never inspired you to try them. Some of these thoughts are old family secrets that have been passed on from generation to generation...O.K. so let's get started

1) Remove the biggest expense first. One of our greatest problems is learning the difference between Want and Need. Being bombarded by tempting advertising 24/7 pushes our Want buttons and we just charge it. Over 50% of Americans are paying between 14% and 19% interest on their credit card debt. That's insane! The first thing you must do is pay down that debt. No!, don't add the new big screen TV as a great family gift for the den, you'll only be burying yourself deeper in debt. There is no way YOU can earn that much on your money (but your credit card company is doing it to you). Reduce it now!

2) Turn down the thermostat, not only on the house temperature, but on the water thermostat as well. By making the house 68 degrees rather than 72 (you know you love that old sweater), and by turning the water heater to 100 from 125 you 'll probably save at least $500 each year. Think of all your savings as a raise. It doesn't matter what you call it, it's still more money in your pocket.

3) Now raise the other one. Just the way people turn their heat too high in the winter, they turn their air-conditioners too low in the warmer months. Play with your A/C ducts to keep the airflow working most effectively and get used to 77 degrees. I've done it and it's all about what you get used to. This too is at least another $500 annual saving. If you live in the south, where many people are moving, savings could exceed over $1000 yearly.

4) Forced and found. Every time you pay in cash and get $5 bills, stuff them into your piggy bank. Deposit those fivers every month into an interest paying savings account. Use it when an emergency expense i.e. medical, repairs, etc. rears it's ugly head. Paying with your "stash" savings will save in credit card debt .

5) Quit hiring, start working. I have friends that by mowing their own lawn, cleaning their own house, and grooming their own dogs are saving at least $200 per week by not hiring others to do those tasks, plus by doing the household chores themselves, they don't have to pay to join a gym.

6) Forearmed is forewarned. It simply means that if you know what the right price to pay is, you won't overpay. Go to Google's Froogle which lists the prices of things you'd want to buy. It really help buying older stuff on E-bay.

7) Create a bulk buying or bulk savings neighbors club. If it is difficult buying at stores that specialize in bulk buying like Costco or Sam's Club, so get together with neighbors to take advantage of low prices. I also heard about a couple that don't generate a lot of trash, so they split the savings of garbage-collection with their neighbor.

8) Don't buy bottled water. It's safe to drink tap water. If you're concerned, buy an inexpensive water faucet filter that will make your tap water even better than most bottled water. This simple saving could add up to hundreds annually.

9) Combine a mini vacation with medical savings. I heard of some people who became aware of the internationally known dental clinic in Costa Rica and saved thousands on costly dental care.

10) You do me, and I do you. Sounds provocative, but you can save over $500 each year. He colors her hair and she cuts his. It doesn't take a lot of training, and could be a fun spousal activity.

Hope you can utilize these 10 wonderful saving ideas. It's not only savings, it's just like getting a huge raise.

Please send me your comments and any money saving ideas you would like to share.



About Author / Additional Info:
I am a former President and CEO of two publicly traded company who is retired in Florida and I love to write and share my self-help ideas.