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  • Writer's pictureMullenandMullen

SUMMER BUDGET TIPS

Is summer fun burning up your budget? Are your air conditioning bills out of control? Are your travel plans eating up your gas budget? Are you trying to Save for Down Payment while costs continually increase?


Summer bucket list on budget

Saving money is a year-round goal, so there’s no time like the present to follow a budget to keep your finances under control. While summer is a great time for vacations, it’s not the time to take a vacation from the success you've had in saving money.


But DON'T WORRY; I’ve got you covered. Here’s how to kick butt at SUMMER SAVINGS with our Summer Budget Tips!



Start Summer Savings At Home


1. Embrace Easy Summer Meal Options


Eating light and easy in the summer is simple! No one feels like heavy food when the weather’s hot, nor do they feel like hanging out in a HOT kitchen. So use the weather to your advantage! Rather than throwing in the towel and going out to eat, set yourself up for success with simple meal planning.


Plan make-ahead meals so you can cook once and eat all week long. Experiment with easy slow cooker options so you don’t heat the oven. Enjoy simple salads, sandwiches and no-cook options ready in 15 minutes or less—quicker than going through the drive-thru and ending up with a bag of fried food. And let’s face it: all that heavy food never tastes that good when it’s so hot out anyway.


2. Take Little Steps to Save on Utilities


Energy Efficiency

These energy-saving tips for summer will reduce the cost of your utilities. Yes, the air conditioning’s AMAZING when it’s sweltering, but setting your thermostat only two degrees higher can save you money while keeping the air plenty cool enough. Whenever possible, opt for a fan or open window instead.


Next, take advantage of the great weather by hanging out your clothes to dry instead of using your hot dryer. Finally, air-dry your hair and pull it up in a ponytail. (Bonus: the style’s cooler, and your hair will sustain less damage from blow drying.)


Next, turn your water heater down to 120 degrees. Finally, take advantage of the longer days and sunshine by turning off lights and electronics and going outdoors!


3. Cancel or Downgrade Your Cable


Are you thinking of cutting the cord? There’s SO much to do in the summer, so it’s a great time to put down the remote, step away from the TV and cancel your cable to see if you can live without it.


Summer is also an excellent time to break from Netflix, Hulu and other movie services. Get your movie fix by borrowing from the library instead.


If you miss the services, you can always rejoin when you go into winter hibernation mode. ROKU Fire Stick is also a great alternative to monthly savings while getting access to more streaming services!


4. Work Out at Home


Workout outdoors

Do you know where you don’t want to be in the summer? A hot, smelly gym full of sweaty people! In the winter, a gym membership is a great way to work out when you can’t go for a walk or run outdoors. But in the summer, memberships often languish unused for months.


WHY ARE YOU PAYING FOR A GYM YOU AREN’T EVEN USING? Cancel your membership and take advantage of the warm, beautiful weather. Go for a swim at the community pool or rec center. Take long walks, go for hikes or play at the park.


Many towns also offer fun workout opportunities in the summer—yoga in the park? Meetup groups for hikes and walking tours? Think of alternative ways to get your move on. Fun AND free!


5. Sell Your Stuff


Summer is a great time to ditch all the junk you spring-cleaned and moved into the garage. If you cleaned your closet, get rid of those winter clothes you were sick of by the end of the season. If you’re finding now that summer has begun, there are sports items you aren’t using or garden tools and lawn furniture that didn’t make the cut; it’s time to say goodbye.


I want you to gather up the stuff you’ve been hanging on to and start posting on Craigslist, E-Bay, and Facebook Marketplace; It’s tempting to plan a garage or yard sale in the summer months. Go for it if you live in a community with a group rummage sale. However, yard sales are time-intensive, and you’ll earn more money selling items on Facebook Market Place.


The good news is that summer’s a great time to sell because people are more willing to come out and pick up items. In addition, they’re in the market for sports gear, lawn, garden and outdoor items, so post ‘em if you’ve got ‘em.


6. Schedule Playdates (for Yourself & the Kids)


Avoid babysitting costs

Take full advantage of the summer by scheduling plenty of friend time for you AND your kids. In addition, you can swap babysitting duties with other moms looking for summer activities and breaks.


Watch kids in trade and skip spending on a sitter. Another great solution is inviting friends for a potluck or simple backyard get-together. Spending time with friends doesn’t need to cost money. You can hang out, play games, enjoy each other’s company and enjoy fun in the sun while saving a bundle. We love rotating game nights with our pals, where we can bring the kids along for cheap fun.


7. Streamline & Automate Your Errands


I love automating my errands. Automation saves me a ton of time, energy and money. When it comes to meal planning, I use MyFreezEasy, which gives me an easy list for once-a-month freezer cooking. Then, I plug the shopping list into my grocery delivery service (like Peapod), and the groceries are at my door. Yes, there’s a small fee, but I still save when I’m not tempted by impulse purchases at a brick-and-mortar store.


I use automated services for household items through Amazon, Target (using My REDcard to save 5%) and Grove Collaborative. My prescriptions are delivered, and I order ahead at the library. Automation saves time and streamlines your errands, vital in the summer when you don’t want to drive around in a hot car (and waste money on gas).


Take Summer Savings On Vacation


8. Book Travel Off-Peak


Book travel off-peak

Avoid peak travel times and days to save on summer travel. For example, Labor Day, the 4th of July, is more expensive.


You can watch for events happening in your destination location as well.


Unless you’re travelling to a city specifically FOR a special occasion, booking your travel during less popular times can help you score better deals. Book flights for mid-week (over the weekend) and embrace flexibility with layovers and preferred airports.


Always pack light and bring only a carry-on whenever possible. You can travel with your snacks and bring along a refillable water bottle. Airport prices are ridiculous!


9. Travel In-Province & Get Creative


Local travel can save you a bundle! Each state has a few attractions, and we often don’t even think to explore them. They are going for a road trip, ’s typically much less expensive than travelling by plane, especially with kids. If your friends or family live more than a few hours’ drive away, turn your visit into a weekend vacation! You’ll save on lodging, dining and more.


If you’re looking to stay home, We live in one of the most beautiful areas of Canada with Freshwater, white sand beaches, Mountains and hiking trails available at our doorstep, and they are COMPLETELY FREE!


A vacation doesn’t require travel across the country or internationally for you to enjoy a great time!


10. Get Outdoorsy



Local day trips

Exploring the great outdoors seems like a natural fit in the summer. Go to the beach, hike in the mountains or visit a National Park. When you go for a “nature-friendly” vacation, you can save money by camping out.


Not the nature-girl-staying-in-a-tent type? Even renting a camper, RV, or trailer is a fun way to camp and explore (while experiencing a few home accommodations). If you rent a van or RV, you’ll still exceed traditional lodging and airfare costs. Many rentals feature a small fridge and stove to save money on dining. It’s an adventurous, inexpensive way to see the sites!


11. Watch Groupon for Discounts


Save on your summer vacation and at home by checking out the options on Groupon! There are extraordinary savings opportunities on Groupon for local attractions and activities, and options at your destination or vacation spot. You can check out their travel deals under the “Getaways” tab or change the postal code in the location bar to your vacation destination.


Check out the pages for the visitor’s bureau in your destination town before your trip. Local listings will clue you into free concerts, art shows and cool “locals only” attractions.


12. Consider a Staycation


Staycation

I know it’s summer and you want a vacation. I get it. But if a break isn’t in your budget, don’t put yourself in more debt and derail your finances by forcing it. Instead, you can create plenty of memories and enjoy just as much summer fun staying right in town.


Pick a few fun options at home if you have a few days off and can’t afford to travel. Explore your Town like a tourist—wander around town, sample local food and see the sites your hometown’s famous for.


Rather than pouting and feeling bummed, you aren’t on a tropical island; go into “vacay mode” at your local pool. Paint your toes, put on a cute pair of sunglasses and your suit, grab a trashy beach novel and chill.

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