Money-Saving Tips: Why You Should Start a “Lending Pool” with Friends

Deanne Gage shares two great saving solutions to help increase your savings this week

Lending/borrowing baby gear is a great way to save some dough. Photography by Doug McCaughan via Flickr (CC)

Spend less than we make. Stay on budget. We all hear (and know) this, but rising expenses sure don’t make it easy to save come paycheque time. This month, I’m going to offer 10 ideas to save (and make) money that have worked for me. Here are two easy things you can implement right away to get started.

Save your loose change
Think quarters, loonies and toonies instead of pennies, nickels and dimes. Throw those coins in a jar and see how much money you have at the end of the month. I used this pool of money to pay for my weekday morning tea and treat at the office. But when I stopped working for this employer, I still found myself throwing change into a jar without partaking in any non home-based delights. If you can resist dipping into the piggy bank, you might, like me, have as much as $60 to $80 at your disposal by month’s end.

Lend out stuff
Start a lending pool of your children’s clothing, sporting goods and other merchandise. This works well if you have like-minded friends whose kids are a few years older and/or younger than your own. When our daughter was born nearly three years ago, friends lent us their baby swing, bouncy chair, sleepers and outerwear. We saved money by not having to purchase these particular items and our friends benefited by temporarily removing baby clutter from their house. I say temporarily, because after the borrower’s child outgrows the stuff, the lender reclaims the stuff and either reuses it for baby number two or lends it out again. Our lending pool has now spread to six families, whose kids range from ages one to eight. Last year, we lent out our high chair, exersaucer, baby carrier and some clothes. This infant just outgrew our stuff this summer, just in time for us to personally reuse again this fall.

What small things do you do to save some extra money?

Deanne Gage has written about all matters financial since 1999. She writes, edits and strategizes out of her Toronto home that’s partially under construction. Besides money issues, she enjoys running fast, jazz music and drinking a quality glass of Merlot. Her two-year-old daughter is quite familiar with money: she borrows it from mom’s wallet for her toy cash register.

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