Day 29: Reduce Everyday Household Spending

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This post is part of the 31 Days to Radically Reduce Your Expenses series. Visit this page for even more ways to slash costs and eliminate unnecessary spending! 

From cleaning supplies to paper products, here are 5 ways to save on everyday household items to keep your thrifty home running smoothly!

When was the last time you thought about the price of napkins before throwing a package into your shopping cart? What about the cost of blue-colored window cleaner or even a pack of computer paper? Sure, those couple dollars worth of items are necessary to run a multi-functioning household, but think of the savings you could enjoy if we started reducing them one-by-one!

Over the past 28 days, we’ve covered a lot of expenses, but we still have the nitty gritty of our household duties to conquer. Because even though our mortgage, insurance, repairs, and electricity make up a much larger portion of our budget, the smaller price tags matter too — and we want to reduce all our costs to keep that thrifty home running smoothly!

From cleaning supplies to paper products, here are 5 more ways to save on household expenses, including why organization plays such a huge part in the expense-reducing process!

How to Save on Household Expenses:

1. Save on Cleaning Supplies – If you haven’t experimented with homemade cleaners yet, you are missing out on some very valuable savings! I would personally love to convert all of our cleaning products over to homemade, but right now I’m testing specific recipes to make sure they work exactly the way I want them to before I make the final switch. You can search Pinterest for all sorts of homemade cleaning solutions from laundry detergent to my very favorite upholstery cleaner. Most use just a few ingredients and cost pennies compared to the ones in the store!

2. Save on Office Supplies – In addition to being a gift supply junkie, I’m an office supply nerd as well. Notebooks, pretty pens, and Post-its of all shapes and sizes line my desk {and an overflowing box in my supply closet…ahem.} One of my favorite places to find adorable notepads is Current Catalog, and I love Pilot Pens for writing. But when it comes to printer ink, is my go-to source. Plus, if you drop any toner or ink cartridge off at Staples, you’ll get credit for cash back! If you’re concerned whether or not recycled ink is worth it or not, I have had very favorable experiences.

3. Save on Toiletries – We already talked about hair care and makeup, but what about toothpaste, soaps, lotions, razors, and shaving cream? While each product could really be a savings post of it’s own, I think the best way to score these items for much less {and sometimes free}, is to match coupons with store sales. It really doesn’t take very long to do, and if you bookmark sites like or, they will do all the match-up organizing for you. Some will even reveal deals not advertised in-store!

4. Save on Paper Products – We are completely sold on buying all our toilet paper from Amazon’s Subscribe and Save program, but check the unit price with your regular store or big box warehouse to make sure it’s actually a good deal. For instance, while toilet paper was a lower price on Amazon, paper towels were not. You can also convert paper towels and napkins to cloth for extra savings, though we haven’t made it that far just yet. There’s still a few jobs where I actually prefer paper towels… cleaning the toilet!

5. Take Time to Organize – It’s unbelievable how many treasures you’ll find when you take the time to simply organize. I am notorious for thinking I need something, buying it at the store, then finding that same item 3 months later in the back of my closet buried in a box we forgot to unpack. It is SO true that organization saves you time and money, and you’ll see right away how much easier it is to find an item when it’s put away and labeled properly. Work on developing your organizational habits, and I promise you’ll start seeing savings immediately!

Today’s Challenge:

Which of these 5 items will you commit to work on this week? Try a new cleaning recipe, or check Amazon’s subscribe and save program to see if you can buy toiletries or paper products for less. Let me know what you’re going to try in the comments below, or tweet @KalynBr00ke with the hashtag #ReduceYourExpenses!

{Go to Day 30: Eliminate Excess Debt}

If monthly payments are taking control of your budget, you don't want to miss this 31 Days Series to Radically Reduce Your Expenses.

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  1. I’ve found that the best way for me to save money on household and personal supplies is to (as much as feasible), use reusable products instead of disposables. Every disposable product represents a recurring expense. There are really fun alternatives to many of them and I love not having the expense of “replacement.” Here’s a list of some of the swaps we’ve made:

    1) Paper plates
    We use stainless steel plates for picnics and such instead of paper. They are super easy to clean, not fragile, and can last for decades. I know someone who’s had her stainless steel dishes for over 40 years!

    2) Plastic sandwich bags and freezer bags

    I use cloth sandwich bags to pack lunches with. For other items (like my husband’s work salad, I pack it in a Pyrex container) I freeze items in glass containers.

    I use the PlanetWise sandwich bags.

    3) Instead of aluminum foil, I use a baking sheet to cover the dish or just skip. I always bake potatoes with no aluminum foil and we like them that way.

    4) Instead of plastic wrap, I got a set of 3 glass bowls with snap on lids. They are great and much more reliable than plastic wrap. I also store a lot of items in the fridge in Pyrex containers with snap on lids.

    5) Instead of plastic straws, we use washable glass and stainless steel straws. They’re a lot of fun to use too!

    6) I keep stainless steel flatware in a pouch in my purse, for use out and about.

    7) Paper muffin/cupcake liners

    We use silicone ones, that we wash and reuse

    8) Paper towels, napkins, tissues

    We use cloth alternatives to all these items. I keep a basket of handkerchiefs in my bedroom. We use cloth napkins at all meals and cloth rags for cleaning.

  2. Great ideas. I like your point about taking time to organize. It is so true that when I do this in my pantry, laundry room, and linen closet I remember that I already have multiples of say, toothpaste, and don’t need to pick more up, even if it is at a great price currently.

    I use Amazon’s Subscribe and Save program to get good deals on household items like toilet paper and such. I also used to make my own all purpose cleaner (countertops, windows, etc.) but now use Norwex cloths (you just use water). They are amazing, and I was super skeptical about them. My mom sent me some to try and now I am hooked 🙂

  3. I’ve heard of people regularly getting all their toiletries for free, but I’ve never taken the time to learn how. I need to do that!

    1. I’m certainly not as good as some of the extreme couponers I know, but it’s definitely worth checking into!

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