WRAL SmartShopper

WRAL SmartShopper

The craziest thing you ever did to save money was...

Posted September 19, 2010

So, what's the craziest thing you have ever done to save money? Here's an article from with some pretty interesting responses! I would love to hear your "crazy" money saving ideas.


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  • Oxymoron02 Sep 26, 2010

    This is probably crazier than most people could handle. My husband grew up with money, and never really had a clue how to work with a limited budget. I got tired of fighting every month to keep it balanced only to have him just go charge whatever he wanted even when I said we didn't have the money ("it's credit, we can pay it next month"), so I let him handle the budget. Worst 6 months of my life. So much money lost to fees and interest. OMG the waste. Took me a year to undo the damage, catch up and get cards paid off when he gave up on it.

    When we were back on track, we saved up and took the kids on a vacation, paid cash. He didn't even object to me packing food and hitting local grocers while we were vacationing because it meant, even though convenience food is expensive, we'd could afford a nicer vacation.

    He now asks when he wants something, and listens when I tell him we can't afford it. He's even started saving for some things and he shops around for better prices a lot more.:)

  • HappyGirl08 Sep 21, 2010

    pss3, you crack me up. I've tried that before on my roommate w/food. Buy the store brand and put it in my container (spaghetti noodles) or anything like that in which I pkg up after it gets home. Do you know that 98% of the time she KNOWS?! I can't pull anything on her and I know she didn't see me do it! haha

    I guess I haven't really ever done anything crazy to save $$. My biggest thing is coupon and deal hunting. I will hunt down a coupon on just about anything before I buy it. I mean I even found a coupon online once for 250.00 off a new honda while I was helping my mom buy her civic. No lie! We went to the dealership and handed them the coupon after they gave her the "bottom line" price. They subtracted it! haha

  • Nancy Sep 20, 2010

    Hat tip to my dear ol' Dad years ago telling us this one!

    Just married, new house (during Carter years when mortgage rates were double digit - we closed at 15.75% interest on our little home!)

    Had to save money. Went to Kmarts, talked to garden managers and asked them if we could haul off the broken wood pallets they had piled high behind the building. He said sure! They were made of oak back then. Hubby managed to fit 12 in his little hatchback car on each trip. He would use a circular saw to cut through between support 2x4's - they fit perfectly in the grate in the fireplace, nails got shoveled up with the ashes!

    Free heat - OAK no less, the hottest and cleanest burning wood you can use in your fireplace.

    Thanks Dad - saved us a fortune for a couple years!

  • JenniferK Sep 20, 2010

    I stood in the rain for an hour with a two year old because anew home builder advertised that they were giving away free ipods to the first 100 people to tour the model home! It wasn't cold or pouring rain, we had an umbrella, and when they wouldn't let me roll my stroller in the model home, I got my free ipod without having to do the tour!

  • donnaa1374 Sep 20, 2010

    Oh, I've done the "fill the shampoo and body wash bottles" with generics also. Can't believe he hasn't caught on yet!!! I do the same with ketchup, juice and coffee. Oh, so bad, but saving!!!

  • donnaa1374 Sep 20, 2010

    I don't know what is the "craziest", but a few frugal things I do. 1. I buy a roasted chicken from the deli, (when on sale or marked down of course, we have with mashed potatoes and and a veg. Then I really clean the carcass of meat, stew the carcass in water with herbs/seasonings, remove carcass, add in saved chicken, frozen veggies, cooked potatoes or rice and i have two very frugal meals very cheaply. My family of 4 can eat two meals on one chicken this way. 2. I save ALL leftover veggies from dinners, put into one freezer container as leftover then when full, i make a mixed veg. soup using tomato soup or tomato paste, broth and cream cheese. Delish!!!Oh, so many more frugal meals from leftover, i don't throw anything away, I find a way to use it all. I'm not so much cheap as desparate to cut my grocery bill in these hard times. It does help that i grew up on a farm and had early teachings of frugal cooking.

  • Faye Prosser - Smart Shopper Sep 20, 2010

    No embarassment needed, dkg - those Ziplocs are expensive and if there wasn't any meat or yucky stuff in them - I rinse and reuse as well!

    pss3 - that is hysterical!!! Nobody tell pss3's husband!

  • pss3 Sep 20, 2010 is my money-saving secret: I buy generic shampoo and refill my husband's brand name bottle. He is very specific about the brand/type of shampoo and I made the switch thinking he would catch on but he hasn't so far...

  • dkg0502 Sep 20, 2010

    reuse ziploc bags after hand washing them...(**hanging head in embarassment**)

  • Faye Prosser - Smart Shopper Sep 20, 2010

    I agree, jcook - aluminum foil is pricey! I usually "buy" it with gift cards earned from transferring my monthly prescription or from rolling credit card reward points into gift cards.

    anclontz - now that is really frugal. I bet your power bill was much lower!

    Thanks to both of you for sharing!