1. Use Your Benefits. If you or your spouse will be deploying to a combat zone, fund that DoD Savings Deposit Program account. You may deposit a total of $10,000 during each deployment and the account will earn up to 10% interest annually. Don’t mistake this for your TSP account, this program is a benefit for those deployed in combat zones per Executive Order 11298. You can get this rate while you are in the combat zone and for up to 90 days after leaving the combat zone.
2. Click Unsubscribe: Do yourself a huge favor and unsubscribe for all those retailor emails…you know what I’m talking about, the 25+ e-mails you get a day to your Gmail promotions tab. In stores, when the sales associate asks for your phone number, just politely tell them “no thank you”. Don’t let a company dictate when you should go shopping! Don’t worry, I’m not afraid that I’m missing out on a good deal, when I’m ready to buy, I can always check out sites like retailmenot.com or even the store where I was planning to purchase from, there’s always a deal out there
3. Set it and forget it. Does your TSP, 401k or 403b give you an option to contribute a percentage of your paycheck instead of a dollar amount? Do yourself a favor and sign up! Don’t waste your time and future savings by calculating out 15% of your current salary, just go ahead and type in 15%. That way, you are automatically saving when you get a raise, and you won’t even notice or feel the pain when that extra bit gets dumped into your retirement savings each paycheck.
4. Get a lil’ Dirty. Stop washing your hair every day! If you are still washing every day you are washing away great natural oils as well as dollar bills down the drain on all the extra hot water and shampoo you are wasting. If you color your hair, it will preserve the color longer too. In addition to saving some money, you will also save so much time when you get to skip a morning blow-dry every few days! Find a dry shampoo that works for you and use it – your hair stylist will be so proud!
5. Servicemembers Civil Relief Act (SCRA). These 4 letters have saved my family thousands. While the SCRA provides several different benefits for servicemembers and their families, one of the heavy hitters you can enjoy is the 6% cap on interest rates. The 6% cap applies to mortgages, credit cards and federally guaranteed student loans. Although the language refers to loans that were taken out before you entered active duty, most lenders either don’t care when you obtained the loan or offer the 6% cap as a perk to servicemember to thank them for their service. It will definitely pay off to investigate your SRCA entitlements. If you need help figuring out what the SCRA can do for you, stay tuned, there will be a SCRA Guide published soon on Her Money Moves.
6. Make the call. Now, I hate talking on the phone as much as the next person, but not when it can save me some money. Just the other day I called DirectTV to cancel HBO because I had finally decided to jump over to HBO GO on Amazon. When I asked them to cancel my package they told me I could have it free for 6 months instead. It doesn’t hurt to call your cable and internet service providers and ask them if they have any current promotions that can beat the deal you currently have or if they offer a loyalty discount. Remember, sugar catches more flies than vinegar, so be polite, but let them know you need their help to cut down on your bill.