zaterdag 23 november 2013

52 Different Ways to Save $100 Per Year: Make Your Own Homemade Cleaners (Overig)

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At the beginning of every week in 2013, I’ll be sharing a different way you can save $100 this year. If you do all of these things, you’ll be able to save over $5,000 this year alone! Many of these things will likely be things you’re already doing, but hopefully all of you will pick up at least a few new ideas or some inspiration from this series.

One of the easiest ways to cut your spending is to stop buying stuff you usually buy.

Let that brilliant {ahem!} remark sink in for a moment.

While it might seem like it’s the most basic of basic statements — and it is! — we sometimes forget to apply it. Or, as is often the case, we don’t even consider an alternative to paying for what we normally buy.

Homemade cleaners are one such example. None of us wants to live in a dirty home (or, at least I certainly hope none of us do!). Because of this, we buy cleaners because, well, that’s what everyone else does.

Here’s the thing: commercial cleaners are often pricey. And the manufacturers are smart. They play on our desire to have clean homes in the most efficient manner so they create products for every single cleaning project known to man.

Whenever possible, they make super slick gadgets that require refills so that you have to constantly be spending even more money to purchasing refills so you can keep cleaning your house. Before you know it, you are literally washing hundreds of dollars down the drain each and every year.

This is why I’m a fan of homemade cleaners. Unless I can get some amazingly sweet deal on a cleaner by paring a coupon code with a sale, I just plain don’t buy commercial cleaners. In fact, after making many of my own cleaners, I’ve come to believe that almost every commercial cleaner on the market is a rip-off.

Baking Soda & Vinegar Are Your Best Friend

Instead of spending tens of dollars each month on special cleaners that are designed for one specific job, go to the dollar store or Aldi and buy some vinegar, baking soda, and spray bottles. These are just about all you’ll need to clean almost every item in your home. Seriously.

You can get a little fancier and make actual homemade cleaner recipes if you’d like. But you don’t have to. You can just spray on vinegar and water and wipe off or scrub most tough stains with a little baking soda and elbow grease.

Earth Easy has a long list of how to clean your house using just baking soda, vinegar, soap, borax, washing soda, alcohol, and cornstarch. You might have to make a trip to Walmart to pick up a box of washing soda or borax, but I bet you already have all of the other items on hand already.

How Much Can You Really Save By Making Homemade Cleaners?

How much you can save by making your own cleaners is going to vary widely, depending upon which cleaners you make, how much you usually spend on cleaners, and how many people you are cleaning up after!

But let’s say you have an initial upfront investment of $30 to purchase the supplies listed above and let’s estimate that these supplies last you for 12 months. That’s like paying around $2.50 per month for all of your cleaners. If you only use baking soda and vinegar, it’s going to be significantly less than this.

If you typically buy commercial cleaners on sale, I’d say there’s a good chance you are purchasing an average of 4 cleaners of some sort each month, at around $2-3 per cleaner. At this rate, you could easily save $100+ per year.

Now obviously, your situation might be completely different. If you’re typically only buying cleaners for pennies each by pairing coupons with sales, it might not save you any money at all to make your own cleaners. However, you will for sure be using fewer chemicals in your home and you will also not have to worry about chasing down deals and pairing them with sales.

But Doesn’t It Take a Lot Of Time to Make Homemade Cleaners?

Actually, most homemade cleaners can be made in less than a minute. And if they save you $1-$2 per minute of time invested to make them, that’s like making an hourly wage of $60 to $120 — and it’s tax-free money.

In my book, that’s definitely worth the return on investment. And some cleaners don’t even require that much time because you just spray the vinegar on or dump some baking soda on and scrub. It doesn’t get much easier than that!

Where To Find Good Recipes

I’ve linked to a number of homemade cleaner recipes below, but the internet is truly a goldmine of homemade cleaner recipes. Honestly, you can find a recipe for just about any and every cleaner you usually use.

Just Google it or type it into the search engine on Pinterest. Now, I can’t guarantee that the first recipe you try will be a home run success. But if you keep experimenting, I bet you’ll find a good homemade recipe to replace just about every one of your favorite cleaners — all for pennies on the dollar!

Recipes: The Good, The Bad, and the Ugly

Here are links to homemade cleaning recipes I have tried or want to try. My honest reviews are alongside those I’ve tried. Not all homemade cleaners are all they are supposedly cracked up to be, so I hope to save you some effort by letting you know which ones I didn’t find to work well.

If you have amazing recipes for some of the ones I found to be “meh”, I’d love to have you link them in the comments!

Homemade Toilet Bowl Cleaner — This looks like it would work well!

Homemade Window Cleaner — This one works really well.

Homemade Shower Cleaner — I’ve heard rave reviews on this one and hope to try it soon.

Homemade Scrubbing Bubbles — I found out after I made this that the two ingredients cancel each other out so it wasn’t really effective at all.


Homemade Dishwashing Detergent — This was was okay. Not stellar. Just okay.

Homemade Laundry Soap — This one worked decently, though I found that I had to wash my clothes in hot water for them to get clean and, even then, some of the stains didn’t come out.

Homemade Foaming Hand Soap — This is the easiest recipe ever and works SO well!

Homemade Oxiclean — This one worked alright but didn’t work quite as well as Shout.

Homemade Miracle Kitchen Cleaner — I can’t wait to try this! 
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