Let's have a 'laundry jar' talk. Yes, you read correctly. You're probably wondering right about now, "What in blue blazes is a 'laundry jar' talk? I don't want to talk about my laundry!" Well, are you interested in ways to save money? We thought so. Here's a quick and easy suggestion that might help you along those lines, and possibly even spark a few other money-saving ideas that you could put to use without too much difficulty.

If you have a washer and dryer in your home, consider, if you will, putting a jar on the shelf adjacent to them. For what, you ask? Think about it for a moment; it can cost roughly six dollars or so per load to wash and dry clothes at your local Laundromat. For two full loads, you can double that amount. Since you have a washer and dryer at home, why not take the money that you would spend at a Laundromat and put it in the jar every time you wash a load of clothes.

For example, let's assume that you have two loads of laundry on any given day. The cost to purchase a gallon of detergent and fabric softener is about ten dollars total. As we estimated, two loads of clothes done at the Laundromat would set you back about twelve dollars. So, doing them at home has saved you two dollars. By depositing two dollars into the laundry jar for every two loads of wash that you do, you can save a substantial sum, especially if you wash two loads twice each week. That's four dollars a week in savings.

Now, you may be asking, “Why would I even want to consider putting a laundry jar on my washer and dryer when I have no need to go to the Laundromat in the first place?” Well, suppose you lose electricity due to a storm that may last for days? What if either your washer or dryer breaks down, and you have to wait a few days for a repairman? What if you live in an apartment and only have a washer? You'd still need to dry the clothes, right? But our main focus here is developing quick and easy ways to save money painlessly, without really changing your normal routine. That's the most effective means to ensure that you'll develop the habit and continue to save.

And, speaking of that detergent and fabric softener, you can save a hefty sum by purchasing generic brands instead of their 'name-brand' counterparts. Apply the 'laundry jar' technique here also. Compare prices of the name and generic brands, and then put the difference in money saved into the jar. Or, instead of buying fabric softener, add vinegar to your wash during the spin cycle. Add that savings to your laundry jar, as well.

Finally, if you really want to fill up that laundry jar to the brim in no time, here's what to do: just pretend that you're doing your clothes at the Laundromat every time. Put six dollars into the jar for each load you wash and dry. Trust us; once you start seeing the benefits, it's a habit you'll love.

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