Outsourcing has been all the craze over these past few years. We’re all busy, and everyone is looking for ways to take tasks off their plate.
Most of us find ourselves paying for the convenience of products and services that are supposed to make our lives easier so we can buy back more of our time.
While I find nothing wrong with outsourcing some things, I think a line does have to be drawn somewhere. Outsourcing costs money, and can easily cause you to continue working extra hours just to pay for the all the products and services you have.
With outsourcing, it’s important to determine what’s necessary and what isn’t. Are you paying someone to do something for you because you don’t have the time, or because you have no idea how to do it by yourself?
Perhaps you could be better off by learning certain skills so you can start insourcing and do more tasks on your own. By insourcing more, you can save money and still make time for what you love.
Here are 5 things you can start insourcing and doing on your own.
Cooking seems like an obvious choice and most families have at least one person who cooks the meals. However, Americans are still spending thousands on restaurant food and takeout each year.
You can minimize your food costs by cooking at home regularly and splitting the tasks with other family members. My husband and I both prepare a majority of our family’s meals, pack lunches, and even prep food and snacks to avoid having to buy food at restaurants whenever our schedules get busy or overwhelming.
It saves us a lot of money that can be better used for other expenses. Plus, it doesn’t require too much time either. I’m pleased to say that I’ve mastered the art of cooking simple and healthy meals efficiently and even preparing some meals in batches so neither of us has to cook each day.
2. Oil Changes
Another thing you can insource is oil changes. Oil changes can cost anywhere from $20 – $70 on average and you should get one every 3,000 miles you drive with your car.
Most of us just look at the sticker on our windshield and head to the auto shop whenever it’s time for an oil change. We don’t even consider the fact that we could do the 15-minute job at home on our own.
Yes, you can just buy your own oil and service your car as needed in just a few minutes. There are plenty of YouTube videos that show you how to perform your own oil change and top off your car’s fluids.
This is something you can also teach a teen to do. This way it can be their responsibility to help service the family’s cars when needed.
Haircuts can be expensive. Considering the fact that we spend $70/month on haircuts for my husband and son, I’m more eager to learn how to cut hair on my own now.
If we continue spending that much on haircuts each month, we will spend around $840 in 12 months. I’d much rather put that money in savings, use it to pay off debt, or put it toward a vacation.
Cutting hair is another skill that is easy to learn. You can watch videos online to learn the basics. Or, you may even be able to practice on model head or dolls until you get the hang of it.
I also realized that if I cut my son’s hair on my own, it wouldn’t really require that much extra time or effort from me anyway. I still had to sit in the barbershop and wait for the barber to complete the cut so instead, I could use that time to cut it myself and save some extra money.
Cleaning is a task that is commonly outsourced. People with busy schedules don’t really have the time to tidy up and do a deep clean around the house.
A good reason to pay a cleaning service may be so you could do other tasks that would earn you more money than you’d be paying. For example, if you can go to work and earn $100/day but pay a cleaning person $25 to come in and clean for a few hours, that might make more sense financially.
Or, if you could better spend your time enjoying the afternoon with family, hiring a cleaner may be more worth the cost.
In my opinion, cleaning is something you can make time to do on your own if you’re looking to save money. If you have a few people in your household, assign everyone chores so the burden doesn’t fall on just one person.
Also, make it a habit to clean up after yourself regularly and clean up as you go, especially when preparing meals in the kitchen.
Cleaning and organizing can also be made into a family bonding task. You can tackle projects together on a Saturday morning before enjoying the rest of the day.
Just like cleaning, landscaping can be insourced as well. My mom is a single mom and found it hard to keep her lawn mowed last year. She kept paying someone $20 – $30 to come take care of the backyard every week or so.
I brought up the idea that she should just invest in her own lawn mower and take turns with my husband who I volunteered to help with the lawn from time to time.
My mom agreed. So, my husband was able to mow and clean out the gutters occasionally. He even taught my teenage sister how to mow the lawn. She is also really into fitness and running. So, she found it to be great exercise and it saved my mom a ton over the summer.
You can also turn landscaping tasks into family projects. You can work on planting a garden, getting rid of weeds, trimming bushes, and so on.
What are your thoughts on insourcing? Do you do any of these things your own or could you think of anything else to add to the list?