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We hit the 50th edition of the 5 Ways We’ve Saved Money This Week series a few weeks ago.  And that was exciting!  Many people celebrate the milestones that hit at each 25 mark.

But, as usual, I celebrate a little differently.  Since I first started this series, my goal was to make it to one full year’s worth of these money saving posts.  So number 52 has been in my mind for a while.

It’s awesome to have reached this week’s post!  It feels like I’ve proven something…to myself if no one else.  😉

That’s why I want to make this week’s post special.  I’m not going to change the title, but rather than celebrating 5 Ways We’ve Saved Money This Week, I’m going to talk about the 5 decisions that have saved us the most money over time.

As always, catch all of the back issues here.  (That’s 255 other ways to save money!)

5 Ways We’ve Saved Money Over Time

5 Ways We've Saved Money This Week 52. This blogger has shared all the ways her family has saved money for the past year. This post celebrates a full year of money saving tips that you can use with your own family.

A Budget Fitting Mortgage

Isn’t it so nice of the banks to offer you a huge amount of money when you are looking at houses?  Both times we bought a house, we were approved for numbers that made my eyes pop.  I suppose they don’t mind loaning us a huge amount of money, but I mind borrowing that much!

Our house might not be ideal.  In fact, most people are shocked when they learn that we have a family of 7 and only one bathroom in our home!  But we make do, and we celebrate a small mortgage that doesn’t make us house poor.

That said, I do often reevaluate whether we are living in the best place for our money and comfort.  For now, we’re pretty happy in our “small” house with our small mortgage payments.  (Plus, that smaller mortgage is more likely to be paid off early.)

Paid off the van!Used Cars

You already know that if you buy a brand new car, it’s already lost value the minute you drive it off the lot.  But we try to save more beyond not buying brand new cars.

We choose a used car that isn’t necessarily flashy, but will get the job done.  We strive to pay them off early (and hope to be in a place where we can pay cash for one some day).  Once we have a car paid off, we drive it until it’s no longer reliable.  To us, reliable means that we aren’t paying for monthly repairs.

We also invest in the car that will give us a great MPG rate (since Hubby has a long commute) and not cost too much on maintenance.  Simple cars that allow us to do our own maintenance (whenever possible) are the best.

Paying Off Debt

As you could see in my latest update, we haven’t got our debt paid off yet.  But every payment I send to them gets us one step closer to saving a ton of money.  The amount we are paying in interest, not to mention paying on things that are long gone, is discouraging.

My favorite part about paying off our credit card debt is that we won’t replace that payment with another payment.  Once we’ve dug out of debt, we’re going to be adverse to putting money on a credit card again.  All of this money being wasted on credit card payments can be put to use getting us ahead.


Our #yearofno has meant big changes for our family.  It’s taught us to be more content with what we already have.  Not having to make decisions on menial things has not only saved money, but it’s also relieved stress.

You don’t realize how thought consuming it is to make decision after decision when you enter a store until you simply stop making those decisions.  And the boost in the bank account is pretty nice, too.

5 ways we've saved money this weekAvoiding Payments

It sounds so easy!  “Just 12 easy payments of $19.99 and this shiny object is yours!”  Except that if you’d bought the shiny object outright rather than making payments, it would have cost you $175 rather than $239.88.

I break our budget into “set bill payments” and “fluctuating costs”.  The set bills are those bills that you have to make monthly payments on.  I like to keep that area as small as possible.

You do not want to chop your paycheck apart and send it to many different companies for the rest of your life.  Look for a post with more on this topic coming up soon!

Those are 5 Ways We’ve Saved Money Over Time!

These 5 ways have made a big difference in our lives.  Looking for big ways to save is just as important as piling up many smaller ways to save.

I’m so excited about having met this special goal of mine.  That doesn’t mean that I’ll be ending this series.  So stay tuned every Friday.  Let’s see if I can stretch it out to 2 years of money saving ideas!

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Quick question before you leave.  Would you be interested in an ebook based on this series?  I’ve been kicking around the idea of compiling my most money saving ideas into an easy to read book  rather than a long series of blog posts.  If you have any interest in this ebook (offered at a budget friendly cost), please let me know!