How to Save Money.

When I started this blog I made no money. At all. For two years. In fact I had to beg for money  from you by putting up a donation button to keep this website going at one point. If it hadn’t been for those donations I would have had to shut the blog down and go back to hosting television shows. Egads.

Hair, make up, clothing allowances and parties.  The horror.

The glamourous life of television doesn’t come without a price though. Day in and day out, they would NOT pay me unless … I talked. Yes. Talked. Spoke words, out loud. It was so very trying.

The truth is I loved television, I just like blogging at little bit more at this point in my life. I have complete creative control, no one tells me I can’t swear (not even my mother) and I get paid to ask grown adults what their favourite nickname for a penis is.

It’s definitely been worth the pay cut. And even though I’m now making a living entirely off of this blog now, a pay cut there has been.  But unlike television, I don’t need to worry that my blog is going to be cancelled and I’ve had steady work since I started my site.

Plus I can work in my pajamas and I never have to listen to anyone else eat their lunch.  Although I always did like the way Lucy Zilio’s spoon sounded scraping against her tupperware.

Luckily I’ve always been good with money and saving money has always come naturally to me so whenever I was in between hosting jobs or starting a new venture like this pajama wearing blog I never once ran out of money.  Except that time I had to ask you for some.  Heh.  I made it two years without a paying job living off of what I had saved so that’s pretty impressive I think.

Like I mentioned in yesterday’s post being good with money doesn’t mean being cheap.  Being good with money means being smart about how you spend it.  Conscious of how you spend it.

For some of you that might mean saving enough money in one place so you can have a really great meal once a month.   Or be able to pay the rent without sweating about it.  The money you save can be used to pay for your kids camp, or a wheelchair, a collectible bottle of wine, a retirement fund or whatever else is important to you.

And that’s key.  What’s important to me (high end appliances for instance) may seem frivolous or useless to you.  Which is fine.  Clearly you’re stupid and know nothing about what’s important to me. High end appliances and teeny tiny, hand made, Royal inspired fascinators for the neighbourhood squirrels.  THAT’S the way to go.

The following is a list of 33 ways I save thousands of dollars every  year.  And they are 33 things you can do to save money too.





1.  Sign up for customer rewards cards.  They’re easy, free and points accumulate faster than you’d imagine.

2.  Only buy toilet paper and paper towels when they’re on SALE.  NEVER EVER EVER EVER EVER pay full price for toilet paper.  EVER . And be aware of when you need to use a paper towel (squishing a centipede that’s wandering by) and when you can use a washable cloth (cleaning the counter). You may decide on different things … just be aware of how many paper towels you’re using/wasting.

3.  Plan menus around what’s on sale at the grocery store or what’s already in the fridge/freezer.

4.  Do NOT use carts in stores if you’re just running in to buy one or two specific things.  No cart means you won’t fill it up. This, no joke, will save you hundreds of dollars a year at Costco alone.

5.  Mend your clothing or shoes.  I darn my socks and have my shoes resoled.  My mother thinks I’m nuts.

6.  Grow your own vegetables.  (I buy a few but technically I could go all summer without buying a single vegetable at the grocery store, and I grow enough potatoes, squash, sweet potatoes and beets in my 133 square foot garden to last 2 people an entire winter) This saves hundreds of dollars in produce every year.

7.  Shop around for the best price on everything.  Ask store clerks when an item is going to go on sale.

8.  Use coupons, and use them in combination with items already on sale.

9.  Call around for different insurance quotes for your car and home. Find a company that can add you to part of a group rate.  It took me 2 weeks but I finally found someone who had a group rate for me based on the University I went to.  If I had paid the first company I called I would have ended up paying $2,600 for my car and house insurance combined.  I called around, spent some horrible, horrible hours on the phone, but ended up with a final quite from another company for $1,800 for car and house combined.  That’s a savings of $800 a year.    Call your insurance company today and see if there’s a group they can add you to that will lower your rate.  (school attended, union, member of a club or organization, Auto club member etc. etc.)  If there isn’t, find out when your policy expires and start looking for a better deal.

10.  I double up on dinners I can freeze so if I’m ever in a rush I don’t have to get fast food or order in. I have meals in the freezer waiting to be warmed.

11.  Do your laundry/dishes etc. off peak hours.  In my province, hydro costs almost TWICE as much during peak hours. Check your rates and hours.

12.  If you’re about to impulse buy something, carry it around the store with you for a while.  Kindda makes you feel like you’ve owned it for a bit and most of the time you’re ready to let it go before you check out.

13.  Check online for discount coupons before you go to any event/museum etcetera.

14.  Get a programmable thermostat and actually use it.  Set it to a minimum of 5 degrees colder at night.

15.  Ask what the best price someone can give you is. And thank them when they lower the price.

16.  Barter.  I’ve bartered eggs for honey, advertising space for free advice and vegetable seedlings for letting me use space in someone else’s garden.

17.  Make your own coffee, don’t buy it from a shop.  It’s coffee not Peking Duck.  You can do it yourself. (but you are allowed to buy macarons from a shop because ones made by a pastry chef are REALLY REALLY GOOD.

18.  Maintain and clean your appliances.  I clean both dryer vents out regularly (yes your dryer has two places to clean lint from) vacuum the refrigerator coils and wipe out the rubber seal on my front load washer  so it doesn’t get musty smelling inside.

19.  Go shopping for whatever you *need* close to store’s closing. That way you don’t spend hours shopping and inevitably buying something.

20. Ask professionals you meet along the way for any advice they can give you.

21.  Always shop with a list.

22.  Don’t be brand loyal on items it really doesn’t matter on.  Like toothpaste, shaving cream, dry pasta … just buy what’s on sale that week.

23.  DO IT YOURSELF if you can. (except for things that have the potential to kill you like installing a new electrical panel or removing angry racoons from your attic)

Paint your own walls, make your own food, fix your own leaky tap, mow your own lawn, … if you can physically do it yourself, do it.

24.  If anything breaks, Google how to fix it yourself.  8 times out of 10 the answer is there.  If you can’t find the answer call a repair or parts place and ask for their advice.  If all else fails, call someone in to take a look at fixing it.  Decide then whether it makes more sense to fix it, or replace it.

25.  Don’t shop as a hobby.

26.  Call your cell company to have them review your bill with them.  They can let you know if you have the plan that best suits your useage or if you’re paying for minutes/services you don’t use.

27.  Buy in bulk for stuff you use often/a lot of like laundry detergent, pop, toilet paper etcetera.  Bulk packages are always cheaper.  If an item you use a lot is on sale (real sale, like 1/2 price) buy a ton of it.

28.  Obey the rules of the road.  A ticket doesn’t just cost the price of the ticket.  It means higher car insurance rates for the next 10 years.

29.  Don’t automatically buy what’s  cheapest.  Buying cheap doesn’t always lead to saving money if it breaks down 10X as fast as something that’s twice as much money.  Blenders are a great example of this.  We were going through a blender a year.  Finally I bought a really good, really expensive blender that has a lifetime warranty and I don’t need to worry about buying a blender ever again.

30.  Return things.  Bought it, brought it home and don’t like it?  RETURN it.   Put it in your car right now and the next time you drive past the store, give it back to them and say I WANT MY MONEY.

31.  Complain.  If a product doesn’t do/taste/perform the way you think it should, complain about it.  Whether it’s to a store manager or the actual company.  I complained when they changed the formula for Diet Coke about 15 years ago and they apologized, explained the situation and sent me coupons for a several months worth of Diet Coke.

32.  If you take any prescriptions and pay for them out of pocket, ask the pharmacist to give you the generic version.  Try it.  The active, actual “drug” ingredient is the same as the name brand drug.  Or the bioequivalent. Only the “filler” ingredients can be different.  Things like binders and colour.  99.9% of the time it performs exactly the same as the more expensive drug.  I totally made that percentage up, but you get the point.

33.  Cash in your rewards card points.  Those points don’t save you any money at all until you actually buy something with them.


And there you have it.  What’s the difference between this list and any other list you might read about on saving money?  They aren’t just quotes or stats I’ve pulled from the Internet, they’re things that I personally do.  Every single one of them.

We all know that the Internet is a big fat liar a lot of the time, but this isn’t one of those times.  I’m not one of those liars.  And I’m also not cheap.

I’m good with money.

And you can be too.

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  1. Kerry feland says:

    I don’t know if it is bad manners for a late reply but I just discovered your blog today and was reading some of the past discussions. This one really applies to me in so many ways. I’m a single mom with an adult mentally disabled/mentally ill, physically disabled daughter and I have a full time job as an insurance broker (20 yrs) and a part-time job as a bingo caller. I also do creative cakes on the side along with a zillion other things I have learned over the years.
    A piece of advice on your comment about saving money on insurance Karen. Be very careful and diligent when choosing insurance and always,always use an insurance broker! A good broker will get to know you and your needs and will be able to find the best price and coverage that fits you and your needs. I have many wealthy clients and many like me -broke ass and trying to make ends meet. If I have a car I got for $5000, it would be cheaper for me to pay the $$ collision premium then it would be to not take the collision coverage because I don’t have another 5 grand lying around to go buy another vehicle if I wrote this one off in an at-fault accident. My wealthy clients however, can simply go buy another vehicle no problem so maybe they don’t want to bother with paying collision premium. And don’t get sucked in by all the advertising!!! Just because companies offer multi policy discounts or occupation discounts doesn’t necessarily make that the cheapest, but your broker will be able to look at all the various options for you. For my own insurance, company A offers discounts for brokers but company B’s premiums and coverages are actually better for me so that is where my own insurance is. And in case you are wondering, there is no “special” price for insurance people – it is the same for us as everyone else. And I get paid by the hour, no commission (the owner of the brokerage gets paid the commission) hence the two jobs!
    And on a more personal note, I have been to hell and back again so many times over the years with life challenges, I have learned a few things. I trade services with others to get what I need and they get what they need. I have cleaned homes and gotten garden produce for it. I’ve baked cakes for people who have helped with my daughter. I’ve hemmed,repaired,stitched items for others in return for clothing items. It isn’t always about money exchanging hands, very often you will have a skill or talent that someone else needs and they have a skill to offer in return. I am pretty good at a lot of things but I am the first one to admit, I am NOT mechanically inclined! I’ve gotten a lot of “free” help with machines(lawn mower right now!) and it hasn’tcost me any$$$ just a bit of my time to sew or bake something. I’ve found over the years that those with the least (like me) are the most helpful and we have actually ended up helping each other out when money was not an available option
    Sorry for rambling but one more item Garage Sales!! Best source for free or cheap stuff and great way to get rid of stuff you don’t use and make some money for it (and have it removed for free too -bonus! Lol). If you can hold a paint brush, use a sewing needle, know how to clean something, you can get some absolutely amazing stuff that you can then “make your own”
    Anyways,thanks for the chance to share. Life is pretty hectic but I will definitely stay tuned and maybe get to comment again.

  2. Jenn says:

    Did you know that Superstore, No Frills, and Walmart will prove match any flyer in your area? I use an app called Flipp to circle the deals in all the other flyers then just show them to the cashier at Superstore. I get nearly every single thing I buy on sale!

  3. Traci says:

    This is a great list. I’d like to add a few things.

    1. Consignment shops. I just found a great one near me and tried it out. I took a basket of clothes and waited a month or so. Went back 2 weeks ago and had $18 to spend and was able to pick up a bag of baby stuff and still have credit leftover. Now I have a one-week old and realized we needed a few more sleepers. Just went over to the shop and got 2 and paid nothing! And I still have credit leftover (guess more of my stuff sold).

    2. Keep it simple. Buying for baby it would be easy to have spent thousands, but we’re sticking to the basics and spending money on the important things (like a non off-gassing mattress) and we have really done well. Also, when it comes to children’s development, simple items are better and most of what’s on the market hinders development despite the claims from manufacturers that they will make your kiddo a super genius. I’ve also been sticking to items that have multiple uses. My carseat will last ’til he’s 2 or 3. I plan to spend money on a keekaroo high chair that converts into a chair for any age including adult. I bought life factory glass bottles that can convert to sippy cups and then just plain old water or snack bottles. This applies for bigger kids too. Lands end sells coats with grow with me sleeves that you cut a thread and then get a few more inches so they last another year. Kids don’t need gadgets and stuff, they need some good quality open-ended play inducing toys and to get out in the world and explore!

    3. This only applies to babies, but my goodness breastfeeding is saving me a ridiculous amount of money! I walked by the formula at the grocery store and saw the prices and did a double take. Also, cloth diapers for the win!

    4. Spending more can save more. If paying for the prepared food means you’ll eat it instead of your food going to waste while you lazily order delivery, then buy the prepared food. Sometimes it is better to just pay more for the tripple-washed salad than to buy a head of lettuce during a busy week. A $4 trader joe’s freezer meal is cheaper (and probably healthier) than $20 on delivery, even if I could make that meal from scratch for less. The question is-am I?

  4. Bob says:

    A good post. I’m sure these have been mentioned, but:

    1. Bank fees. You should not pay for checking. Pay bills online, but only for no fee. Monitor fees: I dropped one bank that was surreptitiously charging me $5/mo when I paid fewer than 3 bills online/mo!
    2. Cable. Do you need it/HD/all those channels? Investigate HD broadcast, Netflix, Hulu Plus, etc.
    3. Amazon. You can really save a lot that way. Amazon Prime, even at $99/yr, is worth it to us for free shipping. And no tax.
    4. No specific recommendations, but eating out, travel, and coffee at S******** will eat you alive.

  5. Carolyn says:

    GREAT advise! Regarding toilet paper “on sale” isn’t always on sale! My friend’s Mother-in-law taught me to take the price & divide it by the number of rolls (a double roll counts as 2 rolls). She aims for .13 to .15 cents a roll. Many of the “on sale” are actually .20 cents each, or more! Also, know the price of everything you are buying & always check your receipt or watch as it is being reung in. If you are overcharged, they HAVE TO give it to you at no charge if it was $10 or less – even if it was only a couple of cents off!

  6. Natika says:

    I know it’s not possible for everyone, but I saved a lot of money by ditching the car. Using a bike or walking everywhere also had the nice side effect of helping me lose weight. I stop in at a grocery store on my way home every night and therefore I can take advantage of all the sales too (and the discounted vegetables that have gone a little off since I can’t grow anything to save my life.)

  7. Neat Spaces Inside and Out says:

    I help clients Organize and Declutter there homes…some people are spending too much, consuming too much and have financial issues..wonder why!

  8. Paula says:

    Great post. About 20 years ago I read the Tightwad Gazette books. I had just had my son and wanted to stay home with him. It was scary to give up my income but we did it and never really felt like we were doing without. The best thing I learned from her was that there aren’t a lot of big ways to save money but the little ways really add up.

  9. Debbie says:

    There are so many wonderful posts to read that I don’t know if anyone mentioned making your own soda (pop). We bought a soda machine years ago. We made a few flavors on special occasions – especially “Blue”, which the kids swore tasted like the color blue!

    I tend to go on seltzer jags where I must have my seltzer (especially with a drop of lemon, grapefruit or tangerine essential oil. Put the oil in after making the soda or you will have mentos/diet coke style explosion. Believe me, I know.

    I used to buy so many seltzer bottles and realized I, alone, was ruining the environment (even though I recycle all possible plastic) and I was spending a fortune (even on sale) on water with bubbles in it. The soda machine allows me to indulge myself anytime I want and it makes me very happy.

  10. Shannon says:

    Sure you can grow your own veggies but not if you live in a forest like me. That kind of shade is not very conducive to veggie growing. :(

    However, I will add that instead we signed up for our local CSA (Community Sponsored Agriculture) farm where each week we get a bag/box full of veggies (and/or fruit, eggs, some CSA’s even have meat and cheese). Joining our CSA meant no more grocery shopping, except for basics like milk, eggs, meat and cereal. Yay! It forced us to eat better, and learn about veggies we had never heard about (hello, garlic scapes and kale). It helped support the local community farms and keep development at bay. But best of all, we saved tons of money! Our weekly grocery bill came out to $27 a week! I’m not kidding.

    Now, not all CSA’s are the same so you need to look at the numbers and “rules”. Some want you to work or pick your own…but “work” could be simple like manning a table for one hour. Also consider if you have to go out of your way to get there, which might make it not worth it in the end. Still, for us it was on the way home from work and it was flexible, with “work” equating to sitting behind a table for 2 hours a season and make sure nothing got stolen.

    I sound like a commercial but I just can’t say enough about how this helped us save money. We found ours by looking around our zipcode on

  11. Barbie says:

    …some very good advice here! Thank you.

  12. Shauna says:

    This may have already been suggested, but no time to read all the comments. Cancel your cable. We bought a Roku box (one time cost) and a satellite and pay for netflix, stream everything else. I think we pay about $175/year now as opposed to almost that same amount per month that many people pay.

  13. BeeNaz says:

    I just sat at my desk on a Monday morning and read ALL of this. Some of these ideas I will be trying and others have planted a seed for something to think about! Thank you for posting this and giving your readers a chance to share.

    I live in a condo where we have shared laundry so I pay per load for washer and dryer. Instead of paying for the dryer I hang almost all of my wash to dry (except towels. I HATE crunchy towels). When I moved in I invested ($35 I think?) for a drying rack from Costco. I absolutely love it and can even lay flat my “dry clean only” work dresses (which I refuse to pay to have dry cleaned so I hand wash and iron). Once a week the rack is a fixture in my living room but who needs a back yard with a drying line.

    Also, I have to chime in about the diva cup. I love love love mine. I’ve had it for years and can’t imagine going back. My initial reason for getting it was the realization of how much waste I was producing using tampons and panty liners. I’ll be honest, it took a few months to get used to it, I still laugh at my girlfriend sitting outside the bathroom door reading instructions out to me the first time I awkwardly hilariously tried it, but now I cringe at the thought of using a tampon in an “emergency” situation. I think if you can get over the “ick factor” it’s a way easier, healthier way to go. And no, my bathroom does NOT look like a crime scene. I quick flush is all it takes. :)

  14. Erin says:

    Great tips everyone! Thanks for getting this discussion started Karen.
    We do a lot of these tips – #3, #6 and #23especially. Making our own laundry detergent helps a lot also.
    Now a guilty confession about #2. I rarely used paper towels “B.D.” (before dog.) However, there are just some things that I am not willing to hang onto until wash day. (Being off-grid means that wash day is randomly assigned by the right combination of wind and or sunshine.) I am saddened by this trend, and hope that as the dog gets older, she will eat fewer things that disagree with her digestion, or I will develop a stronger resolve/stomach.
    Can’t wait to tell my family about the artificial vanilla!

  15. Angela says:

    I am the queen of returns. Doesn’t matter if it’s just a small amount of $, if I don’t need it, it goes back! Thanks for all the tips!

  16. beth says:

    Karen can you pretty please do a post about Darning socks! i have at least 3 favorites that need work and i can’t believe that they can’t be rescued! Help!

  17. Kari says:

    Lol I don’t think I mentioned that I was talking about paper towels. Haha

  18. Kari says:

    This is a great list! Funny because today I was thinking damn I think I’ve gone through an entire roll in one day. Thanks for making me realize the obvious, lol. I need to use a cloth more. I make my own coffee and I don’t use those plastic throw away k cups, I use a reusable k cup filter. I missed the ease of tossing it in the trash at first but it’s not the end of the world.

  19. moneycoach says:

    Love. Of course.

  20. Laura Bee says:

    So many great ideas, trying to think of what I could add. I swore about a decade ago to never buy a new pair of jeans ever again. (I was having a bit of a fat day & nothing fit right…) But that has saved me so much money over the years. I love thrift stores. I also have stopped buying wrapping paper, just using up my stash & also use my daughter’s art work, a basket or something that goes with the gift as a part of the gift. I am part of a Freecycle group and a Frugal Mommy group as well. I give away & get things for free. I am actually going to share this post with the Frugal Mommy group :) That’s where I heard about the Diva Cup. I haven’t switched yet, but am seriously considering it.
    You’re an inspiration for so many Karen. Thank you & thanks to all your other loyal followers. Always fun & educational reading the comments!

    • Karen says:

      No. NO. You will not use the Diva Cup. I just won’t allow it, lol. NOOOOOOooooOOOOoooo. I saw those at my local health store a couple of years ago and almost died! I’d rather save money in other ways. Like performing my own eye surgery, lol. ~ karen!

      • Cynthia says:

        Alot of my nurse friends use the Diva Cup and love it!!! They’ve saved so much money and say it’s so easy.12 hr shifts lugging and slugging, no leaks or mess. Impressive!


      • Laura Bee says:

        Too late. I think I am a convert.

      • Kari says:

        Lol! I agree it sounds awful!!! I’m pretty sure the bathroom would look like a crime scene. Oo

      • Traci says:

        Actually, it is the best thing ever! I switched to it when I was going to be camping at the beach and got my period and have never looked back. It is easier, less messy, less hassle, shortened my period, and makes it so I can actually forget I am having my period while I am having it. Seriously, once you get over the learning curve of a few cycles with it, it is life changing! Just had a baby last week and I am loathing using pads again. Can’t wait until I can use the diva cup again!

  21. Susan says:

    So many great ideas, but, regarding the Electric Usage…you are absolutely correct. In Cincinnati, the electric usage per month, is determined by taking the highest hour of usage, per month, by the customer, and using that rate to determine the monthly charges. For example, if I arrive home, enter my house, turn on a lamp or two or more lights, then walk directly to the thermostat, turn up the heat, then walk into the laundry room, thro a load of laundry into the washer and then turn on the dishwasher to wash a load of dished before dinner…and I do this all within a 15 minute time frame, the electric company will take that 15 minute time frame, if it is the highest usage time frame for the month and charge me that rate for that amount of electricity used during that peak 15 minutes of time, since it will be the highest amount of electric surge in any given 15 minute time frame for the entire month, charging me that rate for every hour of usage for the remainder of the month as well as any time prior to that usage. NOW, WHEN I ENTER MY HOME…or at any given time, I turn on one lamp, wait 16 minutes, turn on or turn up the thermostat, wait another 16 minutes, and so on and so on. One month I actually saved more than half of my usage amount. So, when you arrive, home, or when getting up in the morning, do not light up the house like a Christmas Tree, do not turn on the stove, coffee pot and the toaster/microwave all at the same time, otherwise you will be paying the highest rate of usage for every minute of usage for that month.

  22. Maria says:

    To this day, I’ll straighten a bent nail and re-use it; re-purpose what I can; frequent thrift stores for loads of things; wait to fill up the dishwasher before running it; use vinegar in the laundry; if I can fix it/do it myself, I will, and if I can’t I call around for the best price (though not necessarily the cheapest). I also do most of the things on your list Karen. Now, to find a recipe to make liquid dishwasher detergent that won’t void the manufacturer’s warranty, or cause any damage to the machine :).

  23. debra says:

    This is all about spending less on some things so you can spend more on others.

    That’s not saving money. It’s spending money.

    You save money by putting it into your savings account, retirement fund, or safe investments.

    • Karen says:

      Hi Deborah. You’re actually incorrect. Saving money is saving money. If you wait to buy something until it’s on sale, and get it for $50 do you not think that is saving $50? What you determine is the right thing to saved for is based on the individual. Money can be saved for a coat, school tuition or a big plastic marble. Whatever you want. A savings account is there for the sole purpose of saving money which you will in fact at some point spend. If you choose to save for a retirement fund or a safe investment that’s your choice for how you’d like to use your saved money. That doesn’t necessarily mean that’s what everyone else wants to use every cent they have saved for. In conclusion, if you reread this post you’ll notice that one of the first things I say you can save money for … is a retirement fund. ~ karen

      • debra says:

        I see what you’re saying, no insult intended. I like tips on frugal living too.

        I had in mind those who are ‘penny wise and pound foolish.’

  24. Janet says:

    You forgot #34….Don’t go to the One of a Kind Show!!! Oops

  25. Gwen H. says:

    Great article !!! Another tip – ask for samples. Learn to sew and mend. Use the public library for books and CD’s. Take many free/inexpensive classes at the local community college.

  26. Nancy Blue Moon says:

    This is a great post..and so much great feedback..and we are not cheap..we are FRUGAL…!

  27. Louise says:

    One of my favorite ways to save is to send e-cards instead of regular cards. I don’t have to go searching for the right card in the store, I don’t have to pay for each one, and I don’t have to pay postage. And I can send one the same day I think of it (birthdays and other dates just sneak up on me). You can send an unlimited number of cards, so I send tons more than I ever did before, but all for $12/yr ($10/yr if you buy a 2 year subscription). And they’re animated and beautiful! Plus, they have beautiful Advent Calendars. I sound like a shill, I know, but I’m not!

  28. mary says:

    Great tips…sooooo agree on shopping for insurance. Have done it for years….but…..when our 20 year old got her driver’s license the cost to add her to our policy was more than double what our current premium was. Shopped around and got a price MUCH LOWER for the 3 of us than what we had been paying for 2 with our previous company (and better coverage too).

  29. Kitten Caboodle says:

    Oh! Another way to save a fortune? Don’t pay bank fees – of any kind. You can bank at a credit union instead of huge household-name bank. I bank at a small, local credit union and not only do I not pay a single fee, I earn interest on my checking account and they REFUND me if another bank charges me an ATM fee. They give me free checks, free access to a coin counting machine (keep a jar to throw your change in – cash it in when it’s full), free traveler checks, free online banking (with bill pay), and free remote deposit (you need a smartphone). And the service is 1000% better.

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