I don't buy paper towel (3.49), paper napkins (2.69), designer room sprays and cleaning products. I do buy them when I can get them free or close to free.
PAPER TOWELS: I got a pack of 25 cheap washcloths at a discount store. I paid 1.99 for the pack. (the next week they were on clearance for 4.99) I put 6 aside to do 'dirty' jobs such as floors and the bathroom fixtures. The rest I use a clean one every day to wash dishes. To clean them I soak them in bleach and water then wash them with the other white clothes. This way they are bleached 2x. Savings: 4 rolls a month @3.39 each =13.56+1.08 tax (14.64/ month) Yearly savings is 175.68
PAPER NAPKINS: I've never been fond of these. It seemed the environment could do without the waste. I bought 12 cloth napkins recently at a garage sale for 10 cents apiece and my kids buy them for me (on sale) as gifts. Savings: 1 pack a month @ 2.69 + .22 tax = 2.91 total/ month. Yearly savings is 34.92. Even if I get these free I don't use them, I donate them.
ROOM SPRAYS: I make my own with a large jug of cheap cheap vodka and lavender grown in my garden. These range in price so I'll use an average of 3.69. Each bottle lasts about two weeks. The vodka I use costs 11.89 and a batch lasts two years. Savings: 7.38/month + .59 tax =7.97/ total/month. Yearly savings is 95.64-5.95 for the vodka = 89.69
CLEANING PRODUCTS: I use bleach, baking soda, olive oil, lemon juice, and vinegar to clean and disinfect. I have these in the house for cooking so I don't feel I need to add these to the cost of cleaning. If you need an estimate I'd say 4.00 -5.00 a year. Keep in mind small amounts are used for each cleaning. Olive oil with a bit of essence added cleans and shines wood furniture. The one thing is the furniture needs to be buffed. Good exercise. I've never used anything else so I can't compare prices. But, you can do the math. Products (yearly) to clean the windows and mirrors / 2.29 x 3 = 6.89 + .55 = 7.44. Disinfectants for bathroom and kitchen / 4.69 a month is 56.28 + 4.50 tax = 60.78. Floor cleaners, swiffers are popular. 5.50 / box (and higher) x 12 per year = 66.00 + 5.28 = 71.28
Total savings for a year = (if I've done the math right) 439.79 +
Now to the point. I'm not telling anyone to do these things. A woman / man* can find what they can live without. Then the money saved can be used to enjoy something or save for a goal.
There you have it. It comes down to money is a tool. (see blog 11/2/09) We do have a choice of the things we have in life. Paper towels or saving for an IPOD? Paying down debt is a great choice. Choices are a good thing.
Read Proverbs 30: 13-28. You'll be glad you did. I bet you'll see a part of yourself and grow in confidence.
* I believe we are not generic. I don't use the term person because I think we should be proud of the distinctions of the sexes.
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