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Save Money For This Year’s Halloween In 10 Ways Most People Don’t Know

Save Money For This Year’s Halloween In 10 Ways Most People Don’t Know

Halloween saving is frighteningly easy with these cost-cutting and saving tips. From costumes to candy to a great deal more there are all kinds of ways to have a great Halloween without spending a lot of dough.

1. Costumes

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    A great imagination is all that is required when scaring up costumes for kids or adults. Try a thrift store or better yet go through closets for out dated clothes that can later be donated. You don’t necessarily have to stay away from the popular costumes in order to have a great time. After all, eyeliner, a skull cap and a pork pie hat are all that would’ve been needed in 2013 to become ‘Breaking Bad’s’ Walter White.

    2. Home Decorations

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      Cardboard makes for great tombstones for the front yard.Cut into tombstone shape, use a magic marker to note monsters who’ve gone on to their eternal rest. Or use “Ima Goner” or “Ill B Bac,” Cut eyes into toilet paper rolls. Stick a glow wand in the tube and place the ‘eyes’ into bushes. Stash leaves into pumpkin decorated trash bags. Scare up more fun with balloons covered in old sheets and hanging from trees.

      3. Candy

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        If you’re staying at home to treat the treaters, save by purchasing hard candy. Take care to not overestimate the number of treaters at your door. It’s easy to get caught up in the sugary excitement and spend to much. Don’t worry about complaints with the hard candy win. Most kids don’t care as long as something yummy hits their bag. Of course, you’ll save if you have little ones and will be out in the neighborhood. Don’t forget to turn off your light.

        4. Activities

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          Scare up family and friends for a frightfully good time with a potluck dinner. Have a pumpkin carving or stenciling contest. Another fun activity is to bob for apples. You decide whether to have guests come costumed or not. Although a costume judging contest would also be fun. Make a scary maze by attaching cardboard boxes together.

          5. Make Your Pumpkin Last Longer

          pumpkin

            Once the pumpkin is gutted, clean out the insides with bleach and water. Let dry completely before carving. Spread petroleum jelly on the carved parts of the pumpkin. This should make the pumpkin last through October. Another tip is to not set the pumpkin directly on concrete. Instead, place paper between the pumpkin and the concrete.

            6. Scary Scarecrow

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            scarecrow

              Before carting off clothes to the thrift shop, stuff old newspapers into them to build a scarecrow. Use a pumpkin for the head or an over sized hat. Stuff a pair of garden gloves, if your scarecrow needs hands. Use an old pair of tennies or boots for feet. Your scarecrow can be made sitting or standing. The scarecrow can be a funny or scary addition, depending on your taste. The kids will love the project and you won’t have broken the bank with the addition to your yard.

              7. DIY Indoor Decorations

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                Create a spookier look by draping furniture in old, white sheets. Stretch cheese cloth across a mirror to look like a spider web. Pick up some scary spiders at the store to add to the effect.

                8. Halloween Curtains

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                curtains

                  Make scary curtains by cutting ribbons from trash bags or by hanging and tying back black trash bags. The effect indoors or outdoors is spooky and is bound to cause second looks.

                  9. Halloween Trees

                  halloween-trees

                    An example can be seen on the far right of the picture. Use modeling clay that can be baked in the oven to create eyes, nose, and mouth. To attach use reusable putty or double sided tape to attach the whimsical faces.

                    10. Giant Spiders

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                      Stuff nine large trash bags with newspaper, leaves or packing material. Tie off the body to segregate the head. Section the legs in the same way. Add paper fangs and scary eyes to finish off the creature. Tie close to a tree so the monster looks like it’s getting ready to crawl.

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                      Published on September 17, 2018

                      How Being Smart With Your Money Leads to Financial Success

                      How Being Smart With Your Money Leads to Financial Success

                      Achieving financial success is not something that just happens. Maybe if you win the lottery or something, but for the average person like you or me, it comes from a series of small steps you take over a long period of time.

                      With each step, you form a new smart money habit. And with each smart money habit, you build towards financial independence.

                      So what sort of habits can you form to get on that path? Let’s take a look at smart money habits you can start today to get you closer to a financially independent future.

                      1. Avoid being “penny wise but pound foolish”

                      It’s tempting to try saving a couple cents here and there when buying small items. However, that’s not where the real money is saved. You’re putting in extra effort for something that doesn’t move the needle.

                      You get the most bang when you’re able to cut down on your bigger bills. For example, finding a lower interest rate for your mortgage could save you $50+ per month. And cutting your transportation bill by purchasing a cheaper car or taking public transportation can provide large gains as well.

                      So, look at your recurring expenses such as housing, transportation, and insurance, and see where there’s wiggle room. It’s a much better use of your time than trying to pinch pennies here and there on smaller purchases.

                      2. When you want something big, wait

                      Impulsivity can get you in trouble in most aspects of life. Finances are no different.

                      It’s human nature to see something and want it right then and there. It starts as a kid in the checkout line at the grocery store, and it continues on through adulthood.

                      We get an idea in our head of something we want, and it’s hard not to go out and get it right then.

                      A good example is wanting a new car. Perhaps you’ve had your car for several years. It’s crossed the 100k mile mark. Maybe maintenance is due, and you’re annoyed that you need to replace the timing belt or purchase new tires.

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                      So, you get the itch.

                      You start digging around online, and you realize you could trade in your current car for something newer and more exciting… all for a few hundred bucks a month. Then you get obsessed.

                      Here’s where you have to take a step back.

                      Your newfound obsession is clouding your judgement. Rather than giving into the impulse, wait it out.

                      Set a timeframe for yourself. Maybe you come back to the decision three months down the road. See if the obsession lasts.

                      It might, but often, a funny thing happens. Often, you forget about it. And often, you find that the new car wasn’t a need at all.

                      The impulse faded. And you just saved yourself a ton of money.

                      3. Live smaller than you can afford

                      You finally get that big raise. And you want to celebrate – and why not?

                      You’ve been looking forward to this forever. And after all, it was all due to your hard work.

                      That’s fine, splurge a little. However, make it a one-time deal and be done.

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                      Don’t get caught in the trap that just because you’re now making more money, you should spend more.

                      Too often, people get more money and feel like they that gives them the means to buy a bigger house, a bigger car… you know the drill. Resist.

                      The fact is that living smaller than what you can afford is one of the fastest ways to build savings.

                      But if you constantly upgrade as you begin to make more, then you’ll never get ahead. You’ll just build up more debt along the way and have just as little wiggle room as before.

                      4. Practice smart grocery shopping

                      Food… it’s one of the biggest portions of any budget. And if you’re not careful, it can be one of the biggest drains on your wallet.

                      But luckily, there are a few things you can do to ensure that you stay smart with your money when buying groceries.

                      Create a grocery budget

                      Set a strict weekly grocery budget. When you know how much you can spend on groceries, you can then plan your weekly menu around it.

                      Once you know what all you need, you can go shopping and keep a running tally as you shop to ensure you’re on track.

                      I tend to do this in my head, rounding for each item. However, writing it down as you go would probably work best for most people.

                      Make a list… and never deviate

                      Never go to the grocery store without a list. If you go to the store with a ballpark idea in mind, you don’t have a true ide of what you need.

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                      You’re not well-researched. You don’t know what the sales are. As a result, you’re going to make decisions on the fly.

                      These impulse decisions will lead to overspending, which will derail your grocery budget.

                      Eat before going grocery shopping

                      It’s also important to eat prior to going to the grocery store. Hunger is a powerful force.

                      If you’re shopping on an empty stomach, everything is going to look good. In particular, you may find a lot of ready-made, processed snacks will look enticing.

                      After all, you’re hungry now and that food is easily available. So subconsciously, you may lean towards those items.

                      Unfortunately, not only are those items typically less healthy, but they’re likely more expensive. You pay for convenience.

                      However, when you eat prior to shopping, then you’ll shop with a clear mind. Your hunger won’t cloud your judgement, influencing you to make poor decisions like a cartoon devil resting on your shoulder whispering in your ear.

                      This makes it much easier to stick to your grocery plan.

                      5. Cancel your gym membership

                      Now that you’re all set on your food, it’s time to get smart about managing your budget in terms of physical fitness. And let’s begin by avoiding the gym. The gym bill, that is.

                      The average gym membership costs around $60 per month. That’s $720 a year.

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                      Yet, two out of three gym memberships go unused. That means two-thirds of people who have a gym membership are literally giving away almost a thousand bucks a year. It’s crazy!

                      I recommend seeking an alternative. One good alternative is to look into fitness streaming services.

                      Streaming services allow you to stream hundreds of workouts like Insanity and p90x, right in your own home for around $10-20 a month. That’s $40-50 less a month than the average gym membership.

                      Of course, then there’s the free option. The internet is full of free workouts that you can do on your own with minimal or no equipment.

                      For example, there’s the Couch to 5K program, that I personally used a decade ago to ease myself from couch potato to running my first 5K race. If I could do it, anyone could.

                      Then there are free resources like reddit that have limitless information on workouts. The Fitness subreddit has done all the research for you, populating workout tips and detailed workout routines for anyone to use in their wiki.

                      There are several routines that require no equipment. And you can join in on the subreddit to become part of the community, making it easier for those seeking comraderie and encouragement in their fitness goals. All for free.

                      It’s baby steps… And baby steps can start now!

                      I’ve never met anyone that can’t stand to be a bit smarter with their money. And on the flip side, anyone can get smarter with their money. But remember, it doesn’t happen all at once.

                      Begin by fighting your impulses. Prepare for the week and be smart at the store. And cut monthly expenses like gym memberships that are overpriced and you probably aren’t getting your money’s worth out of anyway.

                      The devil is in the details. And the details can change your lifestyle and prep you for a financially independent future.

                      Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

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