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Stop Buying These 7 Household Products That Anyone Can Make


Stop Buying These 7 Household Products That Anyone Can Make

Stop Buying These 7 Household Products That Anyone Can Make Photo by Ljupco Smokovski /

Every year, too many consumers send hundreds of dollars if not more down the drain — at times quite literally — by buying household products that they could easily make themselves.

For example, they pay $2.99 or more for a bottle of all-purpose cleaner when they could use a 50/50 mix of water and white vinegar instead. It takes seconds to mix them in a spray bottle and costs just pennies on the dollar — making DIY all-purpose cleaner a no-brainer.

Following are several other everyday products that are easy to DIY for a fraction of the cost of store-bought versions so you can keep your household shipshape without your budget running aground.

1. Greeting cards

It need not be hard or time-consuming to make your own greeting cards for pennies on the dollar. We walk you through one simple method in “The 20-Cent Greeting Card.”

If it still seems like too much work for you, at least buy greeting cards at a dollar store. You’ll still probably save yourself a couple of bucks compared with buying them elsewhere.

2. Laundry detergent

When a former Money Talks News contributor tried making his own laundry detergent — see “3 Easy Ways to Get Laundry Soap for Nearly Nothing” — he noticed no difference between it and the commercial variety.

Well, he did notice one difference: It cost about 2 cents per load, compared with as much as 20 cents per load for the store-bought stuff.

Here’s how he did it:

  1. Grate 1/3 of a bar of cheap soap into a saucepan on the stove, add 4 cups of water and leave the heat on low until the soap is dissolved.
  2. Put 3 gallons of water into a 5-gallon bucket, and stir in the soap-and-water mixture.
  3. Stir in ½ cup washing soda (not baking soda) and ½ cup of borax. Keep stirring until the product thickens. Let it sit for 24 hours before use.

3. Dishwasher detergent

Here’s a way to cut the cost of dishwasher detergent to only 4 cents a load: Make the stuff yourself.

Erin Huffstetler, the blogger behind My Frugal Home, says it takes a few minutes to mix together washing soda, kosher salt, baking soda and lemon juice and then portion it into molds.

Huffstetler tells Money Talks News that it’s a simple process – and well worth a few minutes of your time.

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