5 Things to Do Now to Save $10,000+ Later

by Krantcents · 48 comments

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Life is expensive, but some costs are preventative. We’ve compiled and calculated 5 habits you could start today that will make you thousands of dollars wealthier with time.

  •  Wear that sun hat

Tan skin may look fabulous now, but exposure to the sun’s rays is the main cause of aged skin, including sunspots and wrinkles. If sun hats aren’t your thing, then consider limiting your time in the sun during the day. UV rays are strongest, and most harmful, between the hours of 10 am and 3 pm in the summertime when the rays have the shortest distance to travel to Earth’s surface. Even cloudy days don’t protect you from most UV damage, so wearing a light sunscreen daily will help. Because wrinkle treatment is cosmetic, anti-wrinkle treatment costs are usually out of pocket.


 Anti-wrinkle treatment costs:

Botox: max $20 per unit for absolute max 30 units per area= $600

Chemical peel costs average: $764

Not to mention the costs of treating skin cancer that can range from $500-the thousands

  • Munch n’ Move

 We’ve heard it all before: a low fat, low sugar, high fiber, high protein diet is good for your body business. But consider the savings that these feel-good habits can bring you:


Diabetes-related treatment costs per year: $7,900

Other diet-related diseases treatment costs: People who were obese had medical costs that were $1,429 higher than the cost for people of normal body weight. Obesity also has been linked with reduced worker productivity and chronic absence from work.

Though it is often claimed that healthy foods cost more than unhealthy foods, when measured on the basis of edible weight or average portion size, a comprehensive USDA study found that fruits and vegetables are less expensive than most unhealthy foods (those high in saturated fats, sugar, dairy).

 “Exercise is the single best thing you can do for yourself,” says Dr. Robert Lustig, endocrinologist and obesity specialist in an NPR interview.

Gym membership costs

To offset the daunting costs of gym memberships, discounts are accessible through your employer or insurance company. Ask your HR representative about available gym membership reimbursements. Alternatively, many health insurance providers offer discounts to their members for joining certain gyms. Wholesale retailers like Costco can also offer reasonably-priced deals on two-year commitments ranging from $15-$25 based on amenity choices.

  •  Slow down

Driving the speed limit, taking the extra minute to check street signs to make sure you’re not parked where a street cleaner’s about to sweep by, or in a permit zone could save you hundreds of dollars. According to the National Motorists Association, Americans can pay between $7.5 to 15 billion per year in traffic tickets and violations.

Drivers with three traffic violations paid an average of 53% more for auto insurance than those with zero violations, according to an insurance.com study. An easy way to avoid paying these hefty numbers is always giving yourself five minutes more than you need to get ready or get somewhere. Saving $480 on a red light violation for 5 minutes is better than any discount or deal anyone can offer. Also, every time that you drive and don’t get a traffic ticket should be considered consumer surplus: an unexpected bonus, so start seeing driving safely as a way to make money.



  •  Read the fine print

Know what you’re getting yourself into in your next purchase. How long are you locked into that contract for? What is the penalty for cancelling early? Examples of fine print to pay special attention to: phone plans, special limited time offers, for example a Spotify 30 day free trial requires your credit card information because unless you cancel the trial before the 30 days are up, they will start charging you the monthly fee for continuation of the service. This means setting a reminder for when to cancel the free trial is a good idea, 29 days from when you sign up. Amazon has a similar policy for Amazon Prime trials, so be sure to cancel to avoid getting charged. Luckily, even if you forget to cancel your Amazon Prime membership, as long as you didn’t make any purchases on your prime account since the trial expired, they will refund you the cost of the prime membership, unused.


$100s per month

  • Keep your receipts

Here are some companies that offer surprising lifetime warranties and return policies on their products; if you’re displeased whenever, return it whenever:

  1. Jansport backpacks
  2. Costco purchases
  3. Tweezerman tweezers,
  4. Trader Joe’s
  5. REI
  6. Redhead Socks



How it all adds up?

$10,000 +


Written by Katarina at SaveUp.com

Photo by:  Flickr


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Holly@ClubThrifty August 13, 2013 at 5:06 am

I agree that it all really does add up! And in most cases, exercise is free. There really is no reason not to do it!

Krantcents August 13, 2013 at 6:33 am

Details do matter! Simple things like walking is overlooked for an gym membership.

Daisy @ Prairie Eco Thrifter August 13, 2013 at 5:51 am

The little things really do add up. I’m bad with exercising though. I get maybe half an hour of walking in during the weekdays, and then a lot more on weekends, but I need to step it up.

Krantcents August 13, 2013 at 6:34 am

I find if I keep moving at work (in the classroom), I feel better.

John S @ Frugal Rules August 13, 2013 at 6:03 am

That first one is huge! My mother in law has been dealing with skin cancer on and off for the last 5-6 years because she was not practicing good habits when she was younger. She lives in So Cal so it’s a real necessity there.

Krantcents August 13, 2013 at 6:35 am

It takes years for skin cancer to show up and we don’t see the direct effect. When I was growing up, there was little emphasis on SPF protection.

Michelle August 13, 2013 at 6:31 am

Love this post! There are so many things that people can do to save money, and it all can add up quickly.

Krantcents August 13, 2013 at 5:05 pm

I started taking my lunch to work 40+ years ago and saved a couple hundred dollars a month. Today, it would be more and that was just one item!

Mr. Utopia @ Personal Finance Utopia August 13, 2013 at 6:50 am

The driving tip is a good one. I mean, people know they can get tickets and that there is a fine that comes with them. But, in the day-to-day hustle and bustle, most of us don’t stop to consider aggressive driving can ultimately cause higher insurance rates too.

Krantcents August 13, 2013 at 4:50 pm

One of my friends taught me this trick in the early 1970′s! He had a Porsche and he mentioned he saved some money on gas. He was able to increase his MPG by just pacing his driving and avoiding stopping.

No Waste August 13, 2013 at 6:54 am

The REAL cost of unhealthy food far outweighs that of the alternative.

Jansport! I still have my backpacks from grade school, those things are indestructible!

No wonder they offer a lifetime warranty.

Krantcents August 13, 2013 at 4:51 pm

I love lifetime warranties. I think the only items I own that have lifetime warranties is my umbrella and cookware.

Money Beagle August 13, 2013 at 8:08 am

One of my good friends from high school lost his father to skin cancer during our senior year. It definitely gave me a wake up call and I try to be dilligent about protecting myself. Good tips all around.

Krantcents August 13, 2013 at 4:53 pm

Thanks. I wish this information would have be emphasized when I was growing up. It is important to have periodic checkups for your skin.

Todd @ Fearless Men August 13, 2013 at 9:05 am

I’ve got a question: what in the world are REDHEAD SOCKS?

Anyhow, good call on the anti-wrinkling cream. I’m 30, tan and love the sun. Recently a lady told me to put sunblock on my hands, not just my face, back, etc. Thanks!

Krantcents August 13, 2013 at 4:57 pm

Redhead socks is brand name. They happen to have a lifetime warranty. My dermatologist tells me to wear a a sunscreen all the time. I don’t like the feel of it, but I do avoid the sun without a sunscreen. I don’t worry about wrinkles, but I do use a moisturizer.

AverageJoe August 13, 2013 at 9:14 am

Tweezerman Tweezers! You leave no stone unturned, dude.

Krantcents August 13, 2013 at 4:58 pm

There are no limits to saving a buck! It is all in the attitude. :)

Kathleen, Frugal Portland August 13, 2013 at 10:15 am

I think $10,000 is a conservative estimate!

Krantcents August 13, 2013 at 5:00 pm

I agree! More than the money, you will have a healthier and better life.

Stuart@DailyMoneyBucket August 13, 2013 at 3:02 pm

All these regular small amounts really add up over time.

From a UK perspective, the National Health Service (NHS) is free at the point of need. That means British people in general have no financial incentive to remain healthy.

However, with UK fuel prices at £6.25 per gallon, your point about driving slowly is a great way to save money.

Moving up from 50 mph to 60 mph can increase consumption by more than 20%. And moving up from 50 mph to 70 mph can increase fuel consumption by 35%.

A heavy right foot can really damage your budget.

Krantcents August 13, 2013 at 5:01 pm

I drive a Prius C that gets 53 MPG, but more importantly I noticed I drive better because of the dashboard computer.

Bryce @ Save and Conquer August 13, 2013 at 5:49 pm

Lots of things covered in this post. We put all receipts of non-perishable purchases into a file cabinet folder. We put new receipts in the back of the folder, and remove old, no longer valid receipts from the front of the folder. As far as health, we all slather on SPF-45 before going outdoors for the day. We reapply after getting wet or sweating a lot. I still ended up with a basil-cell carcinoma on my forehead. I now have a large cross-shaped scar on my forehead.

Krantcents August 13, 2013 at 6:11 pm

Wow! It was good they caught it. I put on a SPF 50 when I go cycling otherwise I try to avoid the sun.

Andy Hough August 13, 2013 at 7:36 pm

Some of these I already do, but there is a lot of room for improvement.

Krantcents August 13, 2013 at 7:43 pm

The next step is apply the thinking to everything little things like taking your lunch to work saves money

Kim@Eyesonthedollar August 13, 2013 at 8:24 pm

I love Tweezerman tweezers! We use those at work instead of the really fancy medical ones. They just work better for picking stuff out of eyes. I like them ever better now because of the warranty. I had no idea.

Krantcents August 13, 2013 at 8:32 pm

I just love lifetime warranties! Some of things I own are anywhere from 40-125 years old. Quality lasts and you can save money too.

jacob | iHeartBudgets August 14, 2013 at 1:13 pm

I hear the REI lifetime warranty is going away. Bummer :(

But yes to all these things!

Krantcents August 14, 2013 at 3:55 pm

I agree, since I use them for a lot of my cycling purchases.

Untemplater August 14, 2013 at 10:44 pm

I try to wear sunscreen every day even if it isn’t sunny outside. I don’t pay for a gym membership either which saves a lot. I love exercising outdoors and it’s free!

Krantcents August 15, 2013 at 6:41 am

I gave up my gym membership when I created a home gym about 15 years ago. I like the convenience of having it anytime I want to use it.

Little House August 15, 2013 at 6:55 am

Great tips! I especially like tip number one, though I prefer sunblock and often forget my hat. ;)

Krantcents August 15, 2013 at 10:20 am

More and more products are starting to include sunblock. I started to keep my hat in the car for those instances I need it.

Lisa @ Thriftability August 18, 2013 at 2:10 pm

Great points in this post! By far one of the best ways to save money is to take a proactive approach, take care of yourself and remain in good health!

Krantcents August 18, 2013 at 3:40 pm

There are many expenses that can be reduced without changing any habits. Small changes are the most long lasting changes!

Buck Inspire August 21, 2013 at 1:39 am

At first glance, the little expenses don’t amount to much. But if they introduce larger problems in the future, look out below! Thanks for a new POV!

Krantcents August 21, 2013 at 6:49 am

Watching your pennies will earn you dollars in the long run. I started with taking my lunch to work years ago to save just a couple hundred a month.

Drew @ financialvoodoo.com August 22, 2013 at 5:34 am

Not feeling all of these to be honest, but man you are right about receipts. Don’t forget though, that many warranties are total bs.

Did you know that most carpet warranties require professional carpet cleaning every 12 months and many warranties automatically void if you clean them yourself with a carpet cleaner. Ask me how I know :P

Krantcents August 22, 2013 at 6:48 am

I already Know! I was able to use my lifetime warranty on my umbrella and cookware. I didn’t even need to show my receipt.

Casey A. William August 23, 2013 at 6:15 pm

When it comes to preparing food, I’ll be honest, I’m lazy. Preparing a meal requires grocery shopping , preparation, cooking, cleaning, and only after all that can you finally enjoy your meal. At least that’s what I used to think until I had to start doing it for work. Getting each day’s lunch together is simpler than most people would think. As much as I don’t enjoy waking up 30 minutes earlier than I have to or staying up extra to make my own lunch, it does not take a lot of time to purchase weekly lunch items and pack your little brown bag each morning. In fact, lunches can be made the night before so that morning tasks are not as rushed, especially since I have a tendency to be late to work with the ridiculous traffic in Los Angeles. Each night, a fresh sandwich can be made and put together with fruit, chips, and a dessert, whatever you wish. Leftovers from the night before even make a great lunch if they are able to be eaten cold or you have access to a microwave. Eating leftovers may not be a gourmet meal, but when it can save you close to $200 to $250 per month in lunch expenses, I think its well worth the sacrifice.

Krantcents August 23, 2013 at 8:18 pm

I have taken my lunch to work for more than 40 years I started one day a week and slowly added another day I routinely use leftovers which makes my lunch healthier and inexpensive

Betty August 28, 2013 at 2:19 pm

Another way to save money – live within your means !
Just think of the interest that can be saved by not carrying balances on credit cards, lines of credit etc. and not spending money you do not have!

Krantcents August 28, 2013 at 3:42 pm

Good common sense, however most people want specific ways to save money or cut expenses.

Rodney V. Cook September 13, 2013 at 12:28 am

Most jobs have a refrigerator. Put yours to good work. On Monday, bring in 4 days of frozen dinner meals for lunch. Try to get them on sales like 4 for $10 dollars. Then, eat them Monday through Thursday. On Friday, eat out with your pals. Even if your meal is $10 or more, you’ll still save money because of the low cost of your lunch early in the week.

Krantcents September 13, 2013 at 10:19 am

I used to bring my lunch which is even less expensive because it was leftovers from the night before.

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