This blog contains some simple tips and advice from two regular guys. We're not accountants, financial advisors, or brokers, so follow, ignore, or discuss our ideas as you see fit.

Friday, February 22, 2008

Don't waste money on WASTE

Posted by Matt

I'm ALWAYS looking for places to save money. When we moved, I had the idea that we could scale back our garbage service to the smallest container our service provider offered and save a few bucks each month.

Then the container arrived.

It held literally a single garbage bag with no room to spare. We decided to try it anyway, as our new house came with a compost bin and we also recycle a lot.

Then Christmas hit.

Sure, I recycled all the paper and cardboard I could, but was still left with lots of shipping foam and other garbage created by the busy holiday season. We elected to up our garbage cart to the next larger size. I still think about cutting back almost every time I take the garbage out, but the small can is just really small.

This week, as I was rolling the can to the curb, I noticed that it was nearly empty. Instead of pining for the smaller cart like I usually do, I dashed around the house and garage to gather and empty ALL of our wastebaskets, and also threw in a few oversized foam pieces I'd been saving. This should keep us from having to pay a surcharge for putting out extra.

Again, recycling also really helps cut down on how much gets contributed to the local landfill, and you can be creative with some items that the recycling truck won't take. For example, my wife used to have a small business that received a lot of shipments. We would save the boxes, foam and packing peanuts for a few months and then post it on Craigslist or Freecycle. It would usually find a home within a day or two. I'm hoping to do the same with all the glass bottles we pulled out of the crawlspace.

It's bad enough to spend money to procure stuff, but even worse to spend to throw things out.

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