In October HBO announced that they will be offering a streaming service starting in 2015. Do you hear that? That’s the sound of millions of cable subscribers jotting the note “cancel cable” into their 2015 planners. To follow this up, here’s a tip: go get an antenna. No, not those contraptions with the bunny ears and tinfoil, but one of the new streamlined antennas that you can hide behind your TV. Unless you’re living in an extremely remote area, you’ll be able to pick up local HD channels like FOX, NBC, CBS, etc. for a one-time fee of about $40. This way when you cut the cable cord, you’ll still be able to watch the news, sports, and your favorites like Modern Family and The Blacklist. It’s a great way to save money every month.

Another way to save a few bucks is to shop with apps. Target’s Cartwheel app and Cub Food’s Rewards app are my two favorites to grocery shop with. I basically take a few minutes before heading to the store to look at their featured coupons. I then plan my meals around the deals. (Not to mention the Holiday Station gas savings with Cub rewards points!) I know Costco and Sam’s Club are also two places to save money when grocery shopping, but I’m a single woman with no children. I don’t need to bulk grocery shop.

Amazon Prime. Do I need to say more? Okay, I will. Amazon Prime is a great tool to save money. An annual fee of $99 gets you a streaming TV/movie service, free (or discounted) Kindle books, free two-day shipping, and a free music streaming service (with no commercials!). Find a pair of jeans you like at the store, but they are just a little too expensive to justify buying? Look those up on Amazon – 90% of the time they are cheaper. Need a present for little Timmy this weekend, but don’t have enough time to go to the store? Boom. Amazon will have it at your front steps in two days. Recently canceled your gym membership to save money and now want to buy a treadmill? Amazon will give you a deal and deliver it for free! Need to buy kitty litter but don’t feel like straining your back trying to lift the 40 pounds into the trunk of your car? Amazon. Okay, that may make me sound lazy, but time is money. Also, I look like an idiot trying to lift those massive bags into my trunk. But think of it this way, you now can take the time to go for a walk around the block enjoying the fall weather instead of going to the store.

Winter is coming. No, I’m not about to go off on a tangent about Game of Thrones… unfortunately. Here in Minnesota, winter is usually pretty brutal. This takes a toll on our heating bills. Save some money and buy a programmable thermostat. Drop it down to the mid-60s when you’re at work. Do your fur babies really need to be hanging out in 75 degree temperatures? You’ll be amazed at the savings of just dropping down a few degrees. You can always put on a sweatshirt, too, you know.

The last money-saving tip I’ll pontificate on is being a do-it-yourselfer. I’m the daughter of a plumber. He’s been preaching to me since I could crawl on the importance of learning to fix things yourself, or at least try before calling a professional. A few weeks ago my vacuum stopped working. I started Googling the prices of vacuums and looked on Amazon at different reviews. I almost bought one, until I thought “You know what, let me first see if I can fix this thing before dropping 100 bucks.” I Googled the make and model of my vacuum and watched a YouTube video on how to take it a part. In 20 minutes I had that thing working like it was brand-spankin’ new. I immediately called my dad and told him all about it. So, not only did I save about $100, I also felt great about myself. You can find a video on how to fix pretty much anything on YouTube. And you can find a video on how to make pretty much anything on Pinterest. Last month I made a personalized jewelry box for my niece’s third birthday. Had I bought it in the store, it probably would have cost over $40. And just let me say, I’m the last person you’d pick to be in a crafting club, so if I can do it anyone can.

You know what’s coming next, right? I work at Quotacy. All these dollars you save each month now can be put towards getting life insurance. As I said before, I am single and don’t have children; however, what I do have is a mortgage and student loans. If something should happen unexpectedly to me, the last thing I’d want for my grieving parents to deal with is all my debt. A simple term life insurance policy would take care of all that, along with the costs of my funeral. It’s a grim topic, I’m not denying that, but it’s an important one.

Let’s quickly review.

Five Easy Ways to Save Money Each Month:

  1. Cancel Cable, Get an Antenna
  2. Use Grocery Apps
  3. Amazon Prime
  4. Programmable Thermostat
  5. Be a Do-It-Yourselfer

Use these savings to purchase life insurance to protect your loved ones. It’s never too soon to buy life insurance, it’s only too late.

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