DIY Home Money Saving Tips

Top 10 DIY Items That Will Save You Money

Top 10 DIY Items That Will Save You Money
Written by Irina Vasilescu

When you look at your monthly budget, how much money do you spend on things like soap, cosmetics, home decor, gifts and other household items? When you buy everything from grocery stores and supermarkets, you will end up paying quite a lot for a month’s supply.

Did you know that there are actually ways for you to make some items at home without having to buy them? As long as you have the right materials and follow step-by-step procedures on how to make something, you will actually be saving a lot of money in the process. Read and find out more about these 10 DIY items that will save you money!

Why It Pays to Make Things Yourself

Why exactly does it pay to make things yourself? First of all, making things using your own hands gives you a sense of accomplishment. When you’re preparing for your kid’s birthday, for example, carefully wrapping a gift by yourself gives it that personal touch. It’s even more so when you are making things from scratch in the kitchen. No matter which task it is that you are taking on, the results are better if you used your own hands to finish it.

Second, making things by yourself, especially for household items, is usually a lot cheaper. When you buy hand soap, for instance, the cost of one bottle includes the price of packaging, distribution, manufacturing, etc. This means that you are paying a lot of extras just to have a bottle of hand soap for you to use at home. If you only know how to come up with the resulting formula using raw ingredients that you can buy, anyway, you will be saving a lot on the other expenses which manufacturers charge consumers with.

Third, these do-it-yourself cleaning solutions that you can make at home are environmentally-friendly because you know exactly which ingredients are used. When you buy supplies in bulk, you can make a month’s supply of hand soap without spending too much. At the same time, you know which ingredients are used so you can do your share in helping save the environment.

With a bit of patience, resourcefulness and time you can make household items and other things that you need using your own hands – and save money in the process.

At-Home Solutions to Save You Money

If you have no idea about which items you can actually make at home, take a look at our list. We will also be dishing out quick steps on how you can make them, and how much money you will save in the process:

1. Food from scratch

For big families, buying supplies in bulk might be the solution to feed all the kids. This may save you money in the long run, but there are actually food items that you can make from scratch that you will give you even more bang for your buck.

According to MNN.com or Mother Nature Network, you can make your own yogurt, peanut butter, bread, pasta, spaghetti sauce, salsa, jams, jellies, guacamole, baby food, cheeses, granola bars, ice cream, barbecue sauce, hummus, applesauce, pesto, potato chips and pretzels. Visit their site or go online to do a quick search for the recipes of these items.

Since you also know which ingredients are included in each individual recipe, you can rest assured that you are only feeding your family the best. Making food from scratch is also healthier because there’s less sodium, fat, salt and sugar – and you are not paying extra for fancy packaging. Plus, they taste better, too!

2. Items for the baby

Yes, raising kids is expensive. But when you’re welcoming a new member of the family, you do not necessarily have to slave over using cloth diapers instead of commercial diapers just to cut costs. There are many baby items that you can make yourself which you do not have to buy from the store, and the savings added up will amount to a lot.

Burp cloths, baby wash cloths and baby wipes are very easy to make. Once your kid is old enough to consume baby food, you can make pureed food yourself. All you need is a blender and the ingredients. Pureed baby food is a lot healthier for your child, too.

3. Gifts for special occasions

Whether you’re single or part of a couple raising a family, there will be special occasions when you will be expected to give a gift to the special people in your life. Starting from birthdays to anniversaries, Christmas to weddings – these are the occasions when you may have to dole out money to give a present that the recipient will appreciate. But you don’t need to go all-out if you do not have the budget for it.

There are plenty of DIY gift items that you can make at home. If you’re attending a bridal shower, for instance, red handmade scented soaps or candles wrapped in beautiful paper makes for a great gift.

You can also make your own bouquet of flowers using the blooms that you are growing at home, or from the cheap ones that you can buy at the shop. As long as the arrangement is special and beautiful, the bouquet would look like something made by a professional. You can also make other handmade gift items like picture frames, coasters, candle holders, etc.

4. Home decor

You don’t have the money to pay for the services of an interior decorator but you’d like to spruce up your home. Instead of spending money on fancy decorating services, you add little personal touches to your home to update its look.

Photos printed on canvas can be hung on your walls. You can spruce up an old lamp or create your own bookshelf. There are many DIY projects that you can do for decorating the home, and all you need is a trip to the hardware store or crafts shop – then combine it with your creativity.

5. Soap

Even if you’re not a clean-freak, you would need a substantial supply of soap at home. There are great soap recipes online that you can follow to create hand soaps, bar soaps and even foaming hand soaps. Most of the ingredients are readily available. You can even personalize the scent of the soap based on what your fragrance preferences are.

Soap making is actually a quite relaxing venture, not to mention the fact that it can save you a lot of money in the process. If you want, you can even turn soap making into a small side business. Supply your friends and neighbors with handmade soap so you can save them a trip to the supermarket.

6. Bug spray

When going out at night, you’d want to protect your skin from insect bites. Bug spray is the perfect repellent for this and it is an especially crucial item to have at home if you have kids. You can actually make your own bug spray solution by combining distilled water, witch hazel and citronella oil. Place the solution on a spray bottle, and use it to keep the pesky bugs away.

7. Plant insecticide

Do you have a garden in your backyard where you plant small fruit-bearing trees or veggies? Or maybe you have potted plants of herbs in your apartment window sill? If you do, you can actually save money by making your very own plant insecticide. You can use ingredients like powdered pyrethrum, fresh elderberry, basil leaves, cloves of garlic or rhubarb.

The ingredients depend on which insects you are trying to get rid of in your garden. By making your own plant insecticide, you are not only saving money from buying the usual commercial-grade supplies, but you can tend to an eco-friendly garden.

8. Laundry detergent/Laundry soap

Big families usually have huge loads of laundry to deal with on a weekly basis, which means that they have to buy lots of laundry detergent and soap as well. With the cost of this basic household supply increasing on an almost regular basis, you will save money in the long run by making your own laundry detergent.

A basic recipe that you can follow is to combine Borax with soap, baking soda, washing soda and Oxy Clean – supplies which can all be found from Laundry Aisle. You can add sprigs of your favorite scent on the formula, along with laundry softener crystals. Use as you would your regular laundry detergent.

9. Glass cleaner

To make a bottle of glass cleaner, mix a cup of isopropyl rubbing alcohol with one cup of water and one tablespoon of white vinegar. You can use this to clean glass windows at home by pouring the solution onto a spray bottle.

10. Wood polish

Finally, you can make your own wood polish by mixing two parts of linseed or olive oil with one part lemon juice. After applying the solution on wood furniture, you can finish the task off with beeswax and a wiping of microfiber cloth to add shine.

How about you? Which household items do you make yourself in order to save money?

About the author

Irina Vasilescu

Irina Vasilescu is our crafty designer. She joined the team three years ago and is also involved in the writing process.

9 Comments

  • Some interesting ideas here. It is always fun using household items to make useful cleaning materials. It is kind of like a lesson from grandma! My gran always had one hundred and one uses for vinegar and bicarb.

    I’m not too creatively minded, but I will certainly give some of these ideas a go.

    • Phil, you are right! Grandmas are a great resource for money saving tips. My grandma seemed to be able to make a dollar stretch a mile!

  • Eating at home is probably one the *best* ways to save a ton of money. All it takes is a little planning (with sales ads or not- you will still save compared to eating out). Make a menu and stick to it. Utilize a slow cooker if you’re out of the house for work all day.

    One of my favorite little lifehacks is to buy one initial bottle of foaming hand soap and then refill it with just a small amount of shampoo or dish soap and top off the bottle with water. Works perfect!

  • There are some unique items on this list. Another one I would like to add is candles! It doesn’t cost much to buy wax, then you can choose what scent which is usually inexpensive too. Then of course re-use old candle jars, or use ball jars, fancy coffee mugs, anything. For the price of one expensive candle, you can make probably five of them (or more, if you play the cards right).

  • Thanks for the great list. Aside from saving money, the fact that you give gifts that you hand crafted makes it more special than buying things from the soptore. That goes as well for the baby clothes,mpersonally, I like making diaper covers for my nephew. Aside from being sure that the fabric will be delicate and safe for him, it is cheaper than buying the disposable ones.

  • If you are going in a diet or switching to plant based diet, making things from scratch is really the way to go. You will be abel to adjust all the ingredients depending on which work and taste best for you. It also works better for people with allergies and other diesease that doesn’t allow the usual diet.

  • I used to do this back in college just to save money from buying liquid soap. Every time the soap bar that I use to take a bath runs out and become so thin, I would grind it into a fine powder out it in an empty liquid soap bottle and put some water on it and shake and voila! Instant liquid soap for hand washing.

  • Thanks for posting this. I always looking for simple ways to reduce expenses at home. I totally agree with the making burp cloths and baby washcloths at home. Burp cloths can easily be made out of any kind of relatively clean fabric — old tshirts, towels, old pillowcases or even towels. Just simply cut them into appropriate sized pieces and wash them in Dreft before you use them.

  • I love DIY! Especially for gifts and deco, it makes it feel so much more personal. I mean, I have no idea where I’d find witch hazel or citronella oil, so I’m not too sure this kind of DIY is really convenient… However, I saw tutorials for making baby wet wipes and it’s so easy and cost-efficient that i have no idea why people don’t do this more! Makes absolutely no sense to me.

    Nice to get recipes for cleaning at home, though. Always wondered about those!

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