It beats a scrub board
Our washer/dryer fund currently has $868.52. If this doesn’t seem like an impressive amount, know that it’s built out of $2.50 increments.
A few years ago I realized that our current water and dryer were eight years old. Given the unpredictable life span of these appliances — sometimes they last eight years, sometimes 20 — I wanted to start preparing financially. Because I sure as hell didn’t want to take the replacement cost out of savings.
So I opened a Capital One 360 sub-account, and we started paying ourselves for each load of laundry.*
Three years and two months later, we have enough to cover most or all of one replacement unit.** Not bad for $2.50 at a time (and a wee bit of accrued interest).
CardCash is offering an extra 6% off restaurant gift cards, and I decided to load up.
Normally I don’t bother with this type of GC. For a while, we were eating an assortment of restaurants, and trying to keep GCs for all (or even most) of them would’ve been a huge headache. And it would’ve tied up a fair amount of money.
But Tim’s been focusing more and more on a specific chain (Smashburger), so discount GCs there are a good bet. Especially because it’s expensive for fast food. Worth it, but expensive.
Similarly, we keep going to either Outback or Rock Bottom for date nights. It makes sense to get some of those — especially with the discounts offered.
Thanks to the current deal, we saved 20.16% for Outback, 26.97% at Smashburger and a whopping 29.5% at Rock Bottom. That should take a bite, as it were, out of the cost.
Incidentally, if you’re at all interested in discounted gift cards, I urge you to sign up for CardCash emails. Every couple of months the company will have a sitewide 5% or even 6% discount.
I use those sales to get up to 16% off drugstore GCs for those pesky prescription co-pays. Last time I also got 9.1% off for both Quick Trip and Netflix.
In between the sales, I tend to use Gift Card Granny, since the rates are often higher and I can get rewards on my purchases.
Of course, those discounts aren’t as impressive if we don’t save the savings.
Unfortunately, I’ve been slacking in this department on a number of fronts. At this point, it’s mainly just the savings from cutting the cord, getting Ooma, a lowered Internet rate and any cash back shopping rebates we receive.
Of course, even our diminished efforts save around $2,000 a year — money that could otherwise disappear into day-to-day spending. Still, I know we can do better.
So each time we use a discounted gift card, I’ll be putting the difference into the Saved Savings account. With the various GCs we have, it should be relatively easy to ramp up our saved savings rate.
Do you find that smaller savings really add up? Are you also addicted to discounted GCs?
* I wish I could take credit for this brilliant idea, but it was actually something Mom and her Dear Friend had been doing for a while.
** Dear washer and dryer: Please don’t die at the same time!