Strategery How I Save Time and Money Working from Home - picture of woman sitting at desk with laptop and notebook in hand

Strategery: How I Save Time and Money Working from Home

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I know, I know.  You’re tired of hearing about it.

Although you may not be particularly interested in how much I like working from home, a girl has got to share, right?  After all, that’s why I have this little blog in the first place.  Quitting my job to work from home was definitely one of the best decisions I’ve ever made.  So, today I thought I would share the variety of ways that I’m saving money and time by working from my home.  I also want you to know that I do realize that “strategery” is not a real word.  However, I’ve always wanted to use it and I’m my own boss now, bitches!  I can do  that.  So, without further adieu, here are the ways that I’m saving money by working at home:

I’m not driving.  Although we used to carpool to work, I would sometimes drive myself.  It always depended on whether Greg had to work late or I needed to run an errand after work.  Regardless, I’m now down to driving only once or twice a week.  Although we considered selling our second car at one point, I’m now glad that we kept it and it’s serving its purpose well as a low-cost (and amazingly beautiful) second vehicle.  It’s hard to quantify how much I’m saving on gas by working at home.  However, I will say that I haven’t bought gas for my mini-van since April.  I’m almost due for a fill-up and unfortunately gas just jumped to $4.25 per gallon yesterday.  Sigh.  Hopefully prices will go back down a little before I fill up.  A girl can dream, right?

I’m no longer buying fancy clothes.  In fact, I’m wearing my pajamas right now.  It’s pretty disgusting, I know.  But, who cares?  No one is here except for my dog, Pablo the freeloading genius and he hasn’t moved in several hours so I’m pretty sure he’s okay with it.  The shirt I’m wearing has some holes in it so last night Greg strategically moved my shirt around so that my nipple was hanging out of one of them.  (Can I say that here?)  Why?  Because he’s awesome.  That’s why.  If I were a nudist, I could even work completely naked.  Or, I could just choose to go without pants.  How’s that for strategery?

I’m not wearing makeup every day.  And, why should I?  There is simply no reason to get made up to do what I’m doing.  The awesome thing about it is that not wearing makeup or creating a hairstyle saves at least 30 minutes a day.  I now spend that time playing with my kids while Greg gets ready for work.  But, don’t worry folks.  I’m not “letting myself go.”  I’m still wearing makeup on the weekends, and I still take a shower and make myself presentable.

I’m not commuting.  Although I never had a long commute, it still took time.  The drive to work (including dropping off the kids at daycare) took about 15 minutes each way so working from home is saving an additional 30 minutes daily.  I now spend that time working and the result is that I get a lot more done in a lot less time.  In fact, I can typically complete everything I need to do in a 7-8 hour workday.  That probably doesn’t sound like an accomplishment but I used to work 10-14 hours per day.

So, what do you guys think about my work-at-home strategery?  Do you think that working from home is a good money-saving strategy?  Or, should I blog naked to further cut my costs (and laundry)?  Please share by commenting below.

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  1. I will never get sick of reading your work-from-home related posts! I think saving money from not commuting is huge. For me it would also be a huge gain to just NOT have to be in the office (even if I was still an employee who was wfh, not self-employed/small biz owner like you) because I get drained being around people all day and I’m constantly interrupted at work which makes it hard to actually DO work. But I definitely am happy for you and I hope you keep writing about this topic! I’d enjoy more posts about freelancing, running a small biz, increasing income, etc. as well.

    1. I know what you mean about feeling drained. I actually like people and liked working with other people but it sometimes was A LOT to deal with on top of all of my job responsibilities.

      1. Yep I definitely agree. I like being around people when I choose to be around people, not when I’m forced to day in and day out!

        1. DC, I think we’ve talked about this before but I 100% relate about the interruptions etc. I also want to read posts about your freelancing every day Holly! You are my muse. I wish I could wear holy shirts like that but alas I’d get fired, haha!

  2. Haha, glad you’re having so much fun! It seems like there are a lot of benefits of working from home, as long you as you can yourself motivated and don’t mind the solitude. Just the reduction in hours alone is such a huge win.

    1. I actually love the solitude! My kids are little energy vampires so I enjoy having some quiet time to work during the day.

  3. Haha Holly you’re a funny lady! If it makes you feel any better im paying the eqivilant of about $5 per US gallon.

  4. I love working from home! I spent two summers doing it and they were quite possibly the best summers I’ve had. Although it did start to get lonely after awhile. These days I occasionally work from home and I’m constantly trying to improve the processes at my job so that I can do more work from home and less at the office.

  5. Working at home is great and you can save a lot. I know I found myself eating more and had to cut out the trips to the frig and made sure the tv was off. Between gas, not buying clothes and make up I say you are doing great. I really like your new word mind if I use it sometimes?

  6. I would be super happy if every single one of your posts involved working from home, so don’t stop! 🙂

    I can’t wait until I work from home, and I can see us saving a lot of money from it. The extra time from not having to work my office job will be used in much more efficient ways!

    1. Exactly. I still stay busy but I’m enjoying life a lot more now. I’m about 90 percent less stressed than I was as well. Life is good.

  7. I suggested that DH work (from home) naked just yesterday (while we were folding laundry). He didn’t go for it.

    1. (He pointed out that we would lose more money on sunblock than we would gain on laundry.)

      1. Haha, me too! I don’t think I would like working naked. It’s just not my thing….but it’s still nice to have the choice, right?

        I hope your husband is enjoying his new adventures in self-employment!

  8. I’d never tire of the work from home posts. How wonderful to never have to wear pants that button again! I’d still put them on every now and again to make sure I could button them, but you get the point. I’m very happy for your new lifestyle.

    1. I’m still wearing nice clothes on the weekends….so I don’t get fat!

  9. Our gas is going crazy as well, they’re trying to give us excuses, but that’s all they are – excuses. Having worked from home the past year I totally think you can use it as a money saving strategy if you align your thinking that way. We use less gas, aren’t buying any more business clothes and spend less. It’s a very nice fringe benefit of working from home.

  10. The time saved is probably the biggest savings. I am sure your pajamas will fit in a family laundry load anyway so you may keep wearing them. The first thing I thought when I saw your pic was how laptops get hot when you use them on your lap or in bed. If you do and want your laptop to last you should buy one of those little stands so it ventilates properly.

    1. I work on my laptop part of the day and on my office computer the rest of the day. It hasn’t gotten too hot so far! I have seen those stands though so that’s something to keep in mind!

  11. Funny post! This is one of the best finanical blogs that I read and I subscribe to almost all of them. Gas is $4.35 where you live??? YIKES! You must be either in California or New York. ?? I hear ya….commuting is expensive. I commute 45 minutes each way. Our gas budget is $60.00 weekly and that is frugal. It is also huge wear and tear on your car. I have the check engine light on in BOTH of our cars!! I don’t wear makeup to the office because I hate it. And there is something to be said for not having to get dressed up every day. You are very lucky that you found somehing to be successful at working from home. A lot of people search and search and can’t make it work.

    1. Thanks Valerie!

      I live in Indiana!!! Isn’t it crazy that gas is so expensive here???

      I used to get all dressed up for work and it is a lot easier to complete skip over that. My new work uniform is yoga pants and a t-shirt. I may transition to shorts in a few weeks when it gets hot out! I refuse to wear a bra. In fact, I made it company policy that bras aren’t allowed during work hours =)

  12. Love this post! I love that you keep the “personal” in your PF blog. Working from home in my pajamas sounds great but when I was home for a while (due to unemployment rather than home employment) I definitely was a little sketchy on the whole whether or not I really needed to shower rule. ;P I’m not saying I looked homeless, I’m just saying the rules got bent a little. 😉

  13. It’s my favorite part of working for myself, although since I don’t need nice clothes, I do find myself with a shortage of the on the off chance I do get out and need something nice to wear. Saving gas and not driving and having a commute is kind of awesome.

    1. Yes, I agree. I just like not having to go anywhere.

  14. Okay, so if you couple the vegetarian stuff with becoming nudist stuff, then undoubtedly you’re a hippie. 🙂 But who cares, because you’re your own boss, and that’s bad a$$!!

  15. This is awesome, Holly.. You are certainly saving a ton of money. I get to work from home 1-2 times p/week in my current job, and I certainly notice the cash savings from a gas and food perspective. Plus, I save time in the workday by not having to drive to and fro.. I can just head downstairs, put on the coffee pot, and start working right away!

    1. That’s exactly right! It can be a good thing and a bad thing….but it’s mostly a good thing!

  16. Working from home can be very efficient and productive. I used to do when I was consulting. Unfortunately, I could not do all the work from home. I particularly like the aspect of productivity, it doesn’t matter that you get 8 hours done in 4 hours. You don’t have to fill the time.

    1. Exactly. For instance, Greg had something going on Wednesday so I took the day off with him. To make up for it, I just worked 10 hour days the rest of the week. It doesn’t matter.

  17. That’s awesome that you are working at least 3 hours less a day. Improved quality of life and less stress alone makes it all worth it! I’m happy to hear you are not going to “let yourself go” Holly 😛

  18. Your posts crack me up Holly. I love your attitude and your enthusiasm for starting out on your own. Please keep the work-from-home posts coming! I definitely think you can save money working from home. I’d also love the convenience of just getting up and going to work and not having to deal with hair + makeup. Plus yoga pants are awesome.

    1. They are awesome. I also work in house slippers which is heaven.

  19. I dream of this day. Not that I want to be a stay at home dad but if I had to then I would totally accept it and probably make another blog or two that I have ideas on. I guess you should have kids before you think that way though…better go get to work! You should make a post about what you’re saving with a monetary value attached to it!

  20. Holly, you make me smile (okay, laugh) with your off-the-cuff style. This winter you can strategerically place your hot laptop on your lap and strategericaally place Pablo the freeloading genius against your hip and lower your thermostat to save on your heating bill.

  21. Interesting article. I also work from home but being a contractor I have to drive to the houses I remodel. The great thing about being your own boss is no matter what kind of feedback you get here , you still do what you want because you can. Not everyone has the good fortune to make the decision that you have.

  22. That’s how being your own boss should be. Pants are overrated, and so is makeup. You’re saving a buttload of cash, savings TONS of time, and earning more than your old gig. I don’t see ANYTHING wrong with this.

    Just make sure you get the taxes right!

  23. Nick @ says:

    I would LOVE to not have to spend money on a separate work wardrobe!

  24. I work from home on occasion and I really enjoy it. I don’t have to get dressed until I want to, I don’t have to drive into work, and I get to do my work from any room in the house. While I don’t work naked (that would probably burn with a laptop), I do keep it pretty low key!

  25. Michael has worked from home (for his firm) for years. It is a huge savings not having to commute into Chicago– and allows us to have only one car. The car part may have to change soon- and I’m not looking forward to it at all! As a SAHM, I love that I don’t buy clothes, make-up (rarely!), and the accessories to go with them– but, like another comment mentioned, when I do want/need to dress-up, it always involves having to go shopping! I’m a jeans, t-shirt, birk kinda girl anyway. 🙂

    1. Me too. Luckily, I have some nice outfits for when we do decide to go out!

  26. I think working from home would save me time because I wouldn’t have to attend pointless meetings where nothing gets accomplished. I can also cut down on office gossip which wastes time and just focus on work!

    1. YEP!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

      My old office didn’t have much gossip. We didn’t really have any pointless meetings either. However, I did have a lot of distractions that made it hard to get anything done. It wasn’t anyone’s fault…it was just the nature of the business.

  27. Please don’t blog naked. I am a bit of a prude and it would make me blush. If you do chose to blog naked then just don’t tell me and that will be ok.

    Have you communicated your change in working locations with your car insurance provider? Distance driven to work is part of determining your car insurance rate. Let yours know that your commute to work is now a few steps instead of a few kilometres and they might lower your rate.

    1. That is one thing on my “to do” list. My policy renews on July 15th and in addition to those changes I’m taking my mini-van coverage down to just liability.

  28. Definitely a cost savings there. Unfortunately, I don’t have fancy clothes or wear make up to get a savings there. But I also don’t work from home…yet. The no commuting part is what I really like.

  29. I love reading about your new work situation:-)
    I can totally relate to the time&money saving, as I often study at home when I don´t have classes, because I prefer being at home and reading in a more comfortable setting than a stuffy library.

  30. Maybe a little TMI there with the nipple? Haha! When I stay in my pajamas all day I tend to not be as productive. Hopefully that doesn’t happen to you!

  31. Holly, it isn’t just gas you’re saving, but wear and tear on your vehicle. We’ve estimated that between gas, vehicle wear, clothes, lunches and all those added expenses that come when you work outside the home – I’m saving more than $5000 each year and probably more. I also save a lot of time.

  32. I think that provided you can work efficiently from home (which I personally have issues with) then working from home (or a local starbucks) is definitely a cost savings strategy. It makes a lot of sense to me. I save a fair bit of money just taking public transit in to work and not driving, I can imagine what the other savings must be like!

  33. Excellent point that commuting takes not just gas money (or public transit money), but time that could be spent being productive.

  34. Christina Wagner says:

    Those are my legs! <3

  35. I love working from home too, Holly, and so do the kids. You’ll frequently see them out doing barn/animal chores in their jammies (one of the great blessings of living out in the boonies), and it’s just fabulous! You can appear as professional as you like when the truth is that you’re in your jammies and haven’t even yet showered for the day. 🙂

  36. I think that if I worked from home, I’d definitely save a ton of money. Mostly on gas (about $120/mo) and insurance ($200/mo) because I wouldn’t insure my car. And work clothes!

  37. LOL! I always enjoy your work from home posts. 🙂 I’m envious you can work all day in your PJs. While I don’t have to wear suits as often as I did in my Corporate days, I still have to wear business clothes. Glad you’re still showering for your family (and Pablo’s) sake. 🙂

  38. I can relate to you on the pajamas! I can’t help but laugh out loud when I get off an important call and look down only to realized that it’s 10am and I’m still in my boxers.

    Sometimes it feels weird when I don’t drives and I’ll force myself at like 2pm to head out on a 10 minute errand just so I can say that I left the house ha!

  39. I do work also at home for over a year now and I totally agree with all the advantages you got. I also get to spend more time with my kids and personally look after them.

  40. Nikki Creed says:

    loved the article & can really relate …. thanks for sharing !

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