There is a tendency in the modern world to simply choose the simplest method in life. When we have the choice between saving time and saving money, most people in the modern world will opt for the former, spending any amount of money if it can save them a little bit work. Which wouldn’t be so bad if that time was used for productive methods, say building a business, but when most of it goes toward computer games and television shows, it’s more than a little wasteful. (But that’s a subject for another post.)
If you make the other choice, spending some more time to leave yourself with more money, you can find yourself at quite an advantage. Besides the obvious benefit of more money, you can also build up skills in useful areas, the types of skills that will help you to make things that you can use or even sell later. Yes, you’ll spend more time create these products, but the reward will be more than worth it when you learn to create these
7 Things You Should Make Rather Than Buy
1. Food – If you eat out every day for every meal, very soon you’ll find yourself without much money, or too many leftovers. Should you opt to make your meals instead, you’ll find yourself with extra cash and be able to develop some useful skills in the kitchen. You don’t have to set up a garden and grow all your food from seeds (although, that is certainly an option), but the more preparation you are willing to do before you eat, the more you will save.
2. Water – I’m not talking about chemically combining hydrogen and oxygen in a 2:1 ratio (although that works), but instead, rather than buy bottled water, why not simply get yourself a a thermos or two and put the water you intend to drink in there? You’ll get water that’s just as fresh and clean (given that many bottled water sources are simply municipal taps, it’s already the same in many cases), and get it for a fraction of the cost. If needed, you can run the water through a filter system; that’s what the bottling company do, anyway.
3. Cleaning Supplies – I went through the making of cleaning supplies in depth last week, but it’s worth reiterating. Most of the cleaning solutions you don’t have any chemicals you can’t find in a typical kitchen cabinet, and do have plenty of chemicals to which you’d prefer not to expose your children or pets (or yourself, for that matter). There are plenty of cleaning supply recipes out there, more than you could ever need for just about every type of cleaning you could need to do, all cheap and easy to make.
4. Beauty Supplies – You could argue, I suppose, that beauty supplies are the sort of thing that you should be able to drop altogether, but there are times and places where they are important. If you need to look your best for a minimum cost, there are methods to make deodorant, lotions, and even facials without breaking the bank. I can’t guarantee that such beauty supplies will actually make you look beautiful (that’s beyond the power of any beauty supply, regardless of the claims they might make), but at least you won’t be putting out a huge amount for your beauty supplies.
5. Toys – If you have done any shopping for toddlers or other youngsters lately, you’re probably aware that what counts as typical children’s toys nowadays tend to be expensive, complicated, and more technologically advanced than many laptops. Given that most toddlers would rather play with the boxes the toys came in anyway, you might want to check out some of these guides to making your own basic toys. You’ll have the chance to make everything from watercolors to hula hoops, which should keep your little ones occupied for quite a while.
6. Gifts and Giveaways – There are any number of events that require you to give presents, with Christmas being the primary one for those of us with a Christian background. Luckily, while the modern trend is toward expensive presents bought from elaborate shops, you can make plenty of gifts on your own to satisfy the gift giving requirements. Just be aware that you should clarify your intentions with your recipients first; while most people should have no problem with a home-made gift, the last thing you want to do is add (even more) stress to the holiday season.
7. Dozens of Other Things – As any devoted Do It Yourself fan could tell you, I’ve barely scratched the surface here. There are plenty of things you could potentially make on your own that I haven’t listed yet. From seasonings to pesticides to mosquito repellent, there’s more than you can make than you could imagine. And those are just some ideas laid out on this Man vs. Debt article; a little bit of searching will definitely turn up dozens, perhaps hundreds, of options.