By ERIN TURNER
With warmer temperatures and longer days, summer offers us a great opportunity to save money.
Here is a list of some favorite ways our household saves money during the summer but remember this is not an exhaustive list by any means! There are numerous ways each household can take advantage of summer to save some cash!
- Sun Tea. Who doesn’t love a nice cold glass of iced tea during a hot summer day? Sun tea is one of those things I love making during summer. Using my grandma’s sun tea jug, I save lots of cash by making my own. Plus, it’s so much healthier than other drink alternatives.
- Clothesline Drying. Come springtime, I am itching to get my clothes outside on the line. It saves so much money not to run my dryer during the summer. But the biggest benefit is the wonderful smell the clothes have after drying in the sun and the summer breeze.
- Homemade Popsicles. These are one of those things which you just can’t deny kids during the summer. Kids with popsicles melting in their hands just makes me smile! Unless you hit a great sale, those puppies can be expensive. Making my own popsicles saves me about $65 a summer. I use fruit juice, leftover fruit, koolaid or I make my mom’s famous Pudding Pops! Remember those as a kid? Well, they are still awesome and my kids love them.
- Colder Showers. With hotter temps outside, it feels great to take a nice cool shower. This not only cools us down, but it also cool down our power bill as well.
- Being Wise About Heat. We don’t have air-conditioning and don’t feel like we need it. We have learned how to make our house stay cool even on the hottest days. By opening windows at night and closing them up by 9am, closing blinds and curtains and turning on ceiling fans our house stays nice and cool without the added cost of air-conditioning.
- Fresh Food. With the gardens bursting with fresh food ready for the taking, we don’t have to spend much time or money preparing delicious summer meals. Our food budget drops drastically in the summer.
- Summer Menu Planning. I have to admit that this summer I haven’t been very good about planning our weekly meals. But now with our vacation over and company gone, I’m going to get back into the habit. It’s so easy to get caught up into the fun of summer, that come 6pm I don’t have a clue about dinner. By planning meals ahead of time, it gives me the freedom to enjoy the summer days yet still have a game plan for dinner. This saves the expense of taking the family out to dinner.
- Free Activities. Missoula is blessed with so many fun things during the summer. Most of them are free to the public. This is a great way to spend time with family and friends. The splash decks at the local parks are great for an afternoon of fun with the boys, we also love going to the band concert in Bonner Park on Wednesday nights. If you are bored or you are spending money for entertainment, you are missing out on lots of free entertainment all over Missoula!
- Bargain Hunting. Summer is the best time to save some serious cash. Most retailers have some great bargains during the summer. Keep your eyes on the sales! This is also the time to start shopping for school supplies and school clothes. You want to stock on those things before the end of July when the sales aren’t as good. And don’t forget the clearance racks for deep discounts on winter jackets from last year!
- Cancel Cable TV. I just stumbled across this money-saving tip so I have yet to implement it in our house. It makes sense for our family because our TV isn’t used much during the summer anyway. I don’t like the boys to watch TV during the day and most nights we are doing other things, so for our household canceling it during the summer would save us a bunch of cash! And who knows, we might just realize we don’t need it the rest of the year as well!
Summer is one of my favorite times of year and I love that there are so many ways I can save money during the warm days of this season.
Erin’s got tons of tips for saving money, couponing, and sticking to a budget in her previous posts: Frugal Living: 25 Money-Saving Uses for the Humble Coffee Filter, Frugal Living: Grow Your Own Food and Save Money, and A Pinterest Project: DIY Spice Jars. Be sure to check out the Missoula Save it Club.
Erin Eisenman-Turner is proud to be a native Missoulian. Along with her husband and three sons, they raise chickens, pigs, rabbits, and vegetables at Turner Family Farms in the Orchard Homes area. When the farm chores are done, the coupons clipped, and the blog written, you can find Erin exploring Montana, collecting antiques, and trying to maintain a well-run, happy, and organized home for her family.