With winter weather finally behind us, spring has ushered in warmer temperatures and the reminder that it’s time to spruce up your home and garden and tackle those annual “spring cleaning” tasks. You might be dreading deep-cleaning the kitchen, washing all the windows and getting down on your hands and knees to scrub the tub, and the costs might make you cringe as well.
The average American adult spends more than $500 per year on household cleaning supplies. So if you are on a tight budget, never fear. There are simple ways to save some green, while getting your house clean.
Instead of paying top dollar for pricey name brands, I recommend ditching your brand loyalty and trying generic cleaning products. You can typically save 50 percent or more in comparison to the established big name brands. Look at the store’s generic brand product label and compare it to the ingredients listed on the established brand’s product to find similar products to your favorite brand.
Shop the Dollar Store.
For just one dollar, you can find cleaning supplies comparable to name brands. Although the dollar store products may be a little diluted and not as high quality, they are composed of similar ingredients and have similar results as the big name brands. You will notice the selection, varieties and scents will be limited at the Dollar Store, but it’s easy to accept the limitations when a purchase only sets you back a buck. However, you may need to use trial and error to navigate which of the cleaning products and supplies work best in your home and have the best result on different surfaces and environments. Make sure you are comfortable with the quality and strength of the solution in comparison to your normal go-to brand. No need to waste money on cheap products that you won’t ever use if you’re dissatisfied with the results.
Stock up on sales.
April is typically a great time to buy cleaning products. With Earth Day this month, you will see organic and natural cleaning products on sale. During other times of the year, you can keep an eye on the sales at the supermarket and big box stores, and stock up when there are special sales or store promotions. Also look for additional ways to save, such as through a grocery store gas points reward program. You may be able to earn discounts off your price per gallon the next time you fill up at the pump, when you purchase qualified products that are a part of the weekly gas rewards.
Be sure to look for coupons for your favorite cleaning products and supplies. You can find coupons in your Sunday newspaper or magazines, but you can even find some in the store while you’re shopping. Look for tear pads and displays, as well as machines with coupons in the aisle, or look directly on products to see if any have peelable coupons affixed to them or have hang tags with coupons or rebate offers.
Another great source for coupons is the Internet. Printable coupons are sometimes available on manufacturer websites. Two well-known brands that consistently offer high value printable coupons on their websites are Arm & Hammer and Scotch.
You can also get access to coupons on select brand Facebook pages or by signing up for their e-mail lists. However, the most popular source for finding a variety of coupons from different brands are credible printable coupon sites such as Coupons.com, SmartSource.com, RedPlum.com and others.
Make your own cleaners.
Try your hand at DIY cleaner recipes. Pantry staples such as vinegar, baking soda, cornstarch and fresh lemons can be used to make effective and non-abrasive cleaners. Simply conduct an online search for “homemade cleaners” and you will find a plethora of recipes. An added benefit of making your own cleaners is that you control exactly what ingredients and chemicals go into it.
Save money on cleaning supplies by ditching paper towels for cotton rags and cloths. You can wash in the laundry and reuse, avoiding the need to shell out more money on disposable paper products. Wash cloths, old t-shirts, towels and rags make a great substitute for disposable paper towels or dusting pads and can be used to wipe tables, floors, mirrors, sinks and more.
Find ways to repurpose other everyday household items, so you can cut down on cleaning supplies and tools. Dryer sheets can become great dusting cloths for surface cleaning or for shining stainless steel appliances. Old toothbrushes can be used to scrub grout in between tiles or on the bathroom floor. A crate, box or plastic container can be used as a handy cleaning supplies caddy for you to store similar products for cleaning one specific area or room.
Use these tips to save more on household cleaning supplies and products to get the sparkle and shine in your home: Happy home and happy wallet.