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Friday, May 2, 2008

How to Save $25-50 a Week for Gas Money

Leon’s Tank Tips:

  1. Brown bag lunch on M W F. Brown bag lunches are cheap and healthy, and save about $3-4 per lunch. That’s $9-$12. You’ll save gas by not going lunch and you can go outside and take a walk (and save money on the health club).
  2. Quit giving the IRS money for nothing. 85 million American get income tax refunds. According to TurboTax, the average refund was $2,257. Stick that money in your 401(k) and you’ll still save it, but save the taxes: about $400. You now have your refund earning interest in your 401(k), and have $8 a week more for gas. Go down to payroll and change your exemptions. In general figure about one exemption for every $600 of federal refund. Change federal and Michigan, if you get a Michigan refund as well. Check with your tax guy.
  3. If you’re really stuck, you can take money from the refund and apply it toward gas. Michigan refunds are probably better to use, since you might have to pay tax on them.
  4. Go to the drugstore and buy yourself a little notebook. Write down everything you spend money on. I’ll bet there’s at least $20 extra bucks.
  5. Cut out the brown water. Drink a Coke from the Coke machine? $1.25 a day (or about $7.18 a week). Drink diet coke? That’s $7.18 of caffeinated flavored water. Decaf diet coke? Brown water. Same thing for the skinny half-caf latte at Starbucks. Except that’s $3.25 a day or $22.75 a week. Heaven forbid you drink a decaf diet coke AND a skinny half-caf latte, now you have $30 in brown water that could be going in your tank.

That’s five things that save you between $25 and 50 bucks a week and maybe even get you some retirement money.

Leon LaBrecque