Wait, what? You’re telling me to buy something to stop being broke.
Yeah, most of the time that makes absolutely no sense. You don’t want to spend money on things when you are broke. But hear me out on this. Sometimes there are things that you should spend a little bit of money on to save you money over the long term.
The top three categories of most household budgets are housing, transportation, and food. Based on the latest consumer spending data from the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average household spends $37,189 on these three categories combined. That’s a huge amount of cash to spend when the average household income is $73,573.
So our focus was to save money in those categories. And we found these items not only cut our daily expenses in these categories, but they also made life easier.
So what exactly is going to save me money?
The first item we’ll talk about was at the top of many gift guides over this past year. In fact, it was the number one item on USA Today’s top 20 items purchased in 2018 list.
1. Instant Pot
The Instant Pot has been all the rage recently and for good reason. This magical pot is an electric pressure cooker, which means it works wonders in terms of cooking food very fast (up to 70% faster). But you can also cook food slow as a standard slow cooker would. But what makes people rave about the Instant Pot is that it’s convenient and time-saving gadget that helps you make dinner fast without hovering over the stove.
The other great thing about the Instant Pot is that it is a multi-use device. It functions as a pressure cooker, rice cooker, steamer, and a yogurt maker.
So how exactly does this thing save you money? There are multiple reasons this will save you boatloads of money. One reason being you are more likely to eat at home when you have the ability to cook your food this fast. Another is that you can buy less expensive cuts of meat and this magical pot turns them into tender pieces of meat that fall off the bone.
You can find the Instant Pot DUO60 on Amazon. As of this writing, it has nearly 31,000 reviews with an average 4.5/5 rating.
Do you stop for coffee daily? I know it’s small, but it adds up fast (especially if you then get more than just coffee). But why cold brew coffee? If you enjoy iced coffee drinks, then this will have you avoiding spending your hard earned cash at the local coffee shop quick.
The benefit of cold brewed coffee is that you can make your iced coffee, but without diluting your coffee with ice. The flavor of the coffee you brew from this will have you drinking nothing but this.
You can find the Bean Envy Cold Brew Coffee Maker on Amazon. It currently has almost 500 reviews with an average rating of 4.5/5 rating.
With the Keurig, not only are you saving cash from not buying your coffee at an expensive coffee shop, but you are making a single serving and not wasting the rest of the pot of coffee.
Want to go green and save yourself some additional green? Buy a reusable filter from Amazon that you can refill with your own coffee grounds.
You can find the Keurig K-Classic Single-Serve Coffee Maker at Amazon. You can spend more and get more bells and whistles, but we find that this one is the perfect daily coffee machine. Nearly 9,000 reviews give it 4/5 rating.
While you may have heard of the first few items, this one is most likely to make you say “huh”? The Kill A Watt Electricity Usage Monitor will help you track down some of your phantom electronics that are wasting more electricity than you would’ve thought.
It’s super simple to use, just plug it into the wall, and then plug your tv, refrigerator, or whatever else you want to track into it. This device will tell you how much electricity that item is consuming. You can use that data along with your most recent electric bill to find out exactly how much it costs to run things around your house.
You may find you can save money by just unplugging some electronics when not in use. But you may also find that it would be cheaper to replace your fridge than to keep running the energy hog you currently own.
You can find the Kill A Watt Electricity Usage Monitor on Amazon. Nearly 6,000 reviews give it a 4/5 rating.
Yeah, I know, there’s not much more of a boring purchase than new light bulbs (maybe new brakes for your car can be more boring). But this one can save you some serious cash.
These LED light bulbs use 80% less electricity than a standard incandescent bulb. We replaced all the lights in our house with LED bulbs and saw a noticeable drop in our next monthly electric bill.
The extra bonus of using LED bulbs is they last about 10 times as long as a standard bulb. So now you can save money on your electric bill AND replace burnt out light bulbs 10 times less often. Doesn’t get much better than that.
You can find the Philips LED light bulbs on Amazon. Over 3,200 reviews give it 4.5/5 rating.
Now I’m sure you’ve heard this one before, but you can save quite a bit of cash on your utility bills with a programmable thermostat. According to the EPA’s Energy Star website, you can save about $180 a year in energy costs by using a programmable thermostat.
This Emerson Wi-Fi programmable thermostat was named the “Best Value” smart thermostat of 2018 by USA Today’s Reviewed.com. It also works with Alexa, so you can use voice control from your favorite Alexa device, “Alexa, increase the thermostat”.
In addition to the money you save on your utility bills, you can also check with your utility provider to see if they offer rebates. When I put one in my house, we received a cash back rebate from our local utility. On top of that cash, we’ve saved enough on our utility bill to have more than paid for this gadget.
You can find the Emerson Wi-Fi Programmable Thermostat on Amazon. Over 1,000 reviews give it 4.5/5 rating.
Yeah, I get it, an iPhone screen protector doesn’t save you money by itself. BUT, it does save you some major cash if you drop your phone and it protects your screen from shattering in a million pieces.
I used to avoid buying these, but then I shattered the screen on my phone from a short fall from my nightstand onto the wood floor. Some people have good luck and their phone still works. Mine didn’t.
It broke the screen and the digitizer (had no idea what that was until I broke it). That meant that I could see text messages and phone calls coming in, but the phone didn’t recognize me touching the screen. Since that happened, I’ve made sure to make sure my phone was protected so I wouldn’t be out the cash for a new screen.
Final Word On Amazon Purchases That Can Save Cash
Chances are that most purchases you make don’t save you money over the long term. And you can probably find several of those kinds of purchases that you could put off to buy some things that will save you cash over the long term.
If you’re willing to shell out a few bucks today, you could really benefit your future self. And who doesn’t want to have more money in their pocket in the future?
Have you made any of these money-saving purchases? What are some other money-saving purchases you’ve made? Share them with us in the comments below.