Hobbies can get expensive quickly. As the price of almost everything continues to increase, I have become more aware of what I spend on my hobbies. I have put into place a few savings rules for myself when it comes to my hobbies.
Staying Aware of Sales
I am on the mailing list and an email list for the stores I frequent for my hobbies. This helps me to know when sales are occurring. I also check the websites of these stores on a weekly or bi-weekly basis so I know if a sale is occurring on any of the items I use for my hobbies.
I rarely go into a store that I use for one of my hobbies without a coupon in hand. I check the mailers we get for these stores for coupons and I also check the internet. There are a lot of coupon sites on the internet and many of them have store coupons or links to them. Since I am on the mailing list for these stores I also always check my email and my coupon stash to see if I have any coupons before I go to the store. Some stores I frequent even accept expired coupons and many accept competitors coupons. I have found that it never hurts to ask.
Having a Budget
I limit myself to a budget for personal items each month. Out of that budget needs to come anything I want to buy for myself. This includes items I want to buy for my hobbies. This helps me control my spending on my hobbies and requires that I plan out my purchases. If I know that I want to buy several items for a hobby project, I either plan out the purchases over several months or I save money from my personal budget each month until I have enough.
Buying Only What I Need
When you have a hobby, it can be tempting to go into a store and buy anything that looks interesting or that you think you could use later. It is because of this reason that I always to into the store with a specific project or tool in mind. I make sure that I only buy that item or what I need for the project. I may look around and create a list of future “wish” projects or tools but I do not buy any of those things.