Super-smart ways to save money at your home or workspace
Working is for earning, not spending! Try these small changes to keep that cash coming in rather than flowing out.
At a Glance: It’s possible to outfit your workspace without depleting your paycheck. Look for kitchen items already in your possession, choose Century Gothic font for your non-schoolwork stuff and keep your wardrobe simple.
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Finding corners to cut in the workplace can be difficult when there’s a lot at work you can’t control and when you’re stressed out and looking for the quick boost of a costly and convenient treat. But try these money management tactics, and your subsequent savings can go further toward paying for your degree.
Upcycle old kitchen supplies (savings: $20 to $30)
Don’t buy desk supplies. Lots of items from the kitchen can clear clutter on the cheap. A spice rack can convert into a clever storage bin for rubber bands, paper clips and push pins. An old dish rack can hold files, and the silverware bin is the perfect penholder. Cut the top off empty cereal or envelope boxes to create desk drawer dividers.
For your non-schoolwork stuff, switch to Century Gothic font (savings: about 30 percent less ink)
Seriously! Switching fonts is like money in the bank. Century Gothic produces surprising savings. When printed, it uses about 30 percent less ink than the standard Arial font. A 30 percent savings of ink on the page means savings on expensive toner cartridges.
Make coffee at your desk (savings: $2 to $5 per day)
Get a French press ($7 to $40) and a stash of ground coffee at your desk. Your coffee will come to pennies a day versus dollars. (If you do need to buy a coffee for networking or meetings, get a small drip and dress it up with the free cream and sugar.)
Skip the bevies (savings: $2 to $5 per meal)
Lunch out during the workday is expensive, but it’s also convenient. We know you know to bring your own lunch—and that just doesn’t happen all the time. If you do buy lunch, the least you can do is cut the overpriced carbonated beverage and just drink water. We can all drink more water anyway.
Bring your own snacks (savings: $1 to $3 per day)
Everyone knows this and so few people do it. Set a recurring alarm on your phone for every Sunday night to remind yourself to put a handful of healthy snacks for the week in your bag or purse RIGHT NOW. Because you will forget on Monday morning. This will save you dollars and save you from that expensive vending machine filled with low-nutrition, high-fat food and high-sugar snacks you probably shouldn’t eat.
Pare down your wardrobe to wash-and-wear only (savings: $100 to $200 per year)
Dry-cleaning is unnecessary with today’s professional yet easy to care for materials. Get rid of your “dry clean only” items and wear only washable (but professional) clothing. Even better: pare down your whole closet to 20 clothing items and three pairs of shoes. Sell the other items.
Bring a pint glass to keep at your desk (savings: up to $2 a day)
Fill it up from the sink at work and drink out of it. Don’t pay money for the plastic—save those dollars for your next class payment!