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"Buy your own cable modem for $100, return the one you've been renting, and boom: a $120-a-year savings." Extra smartphone data "The cell phone carriers hope you'll go over your monthly allotment [of data]," says Pogue. "If you do, they slap absurd overage charges onto your bill." To never pay an overage charge again, install a "fuel gauge" app, like DataMan or My Data Manger , which will monitor the data you use and warn you if you're approaching your monthly limit. Pogue also suggests identifying the "gas-guzzlers": "Different apps use different amounts of data, and you might be astonished to see which ones are the guilty parties." Finally, use Wi-Fi whenever you possibly can. When you're connected to Wi-Fi, you're not using any of your data allowance. Excess groceries Collectively, we waste a lot of food . Every time you throw away excess groceries, that's money down the drain. Before you grocery shop, think about the meals you're going to make for the week and write down exactly what ingredients you'll need to prepare those meals. When you actually go to the store, stick to just the ingredients on your list. Brand-name products Going generic for groceries, toiletries, or pet supplies is an easy way to save money over time. As Pogue reports, "store brands cost around 30 percent less than national brands." You don't have to buy generic for everything.

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