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Household tips that can save you hundreds of dollars per year


Today’s household hint, that can save you hundreds of dollars per year, is one that I picked up from my not as good looking, less intelligent, younger brother. You see my brother has 2-4 foster children in his house at any given moment and one bill that normally doesn’t seem that big, got big for his household.

That bill was for liquid handsoap for the bathroom. He was going through over a gallon a month because the kids would just fly through it between going to the bathroom and washing up for meals. But, he had an idea! Now instead of spending $10 a month for a gallon of hand soap, he has cut that down to $10 per year, saving him over $110 per year.

How is this possible without washing any less? First, you buy a gallon of just regular hand soap. Then yo ubuy a $4.95 pump dispenser that produces foam soap. Once the soap is gone, thisis where the money savings starts.

You fill the soap dispenser 2/3 of the way with water and then the last 1/3 with the new hand soap. The foam dispenser takes the soap and water mixture and adds air to it, making the soap go a lot further. One pump of a normal soap dispenser is equal to about 30 from a foam one. I’ve been using my brothers technique for over six months now and I think my gallon of liquid soap is going to last me close to 3 years…maybe more. (Kids are also less likely to pump it 3 or 4 times because the foam fills their hands the first time.)

Hope this helps some families out there save as much money as it has me and thanks to my brother. I’m still better looking, but today you were a little bit smarter!

Respect Realty LLC (Expect More)


At Respect Realty, LLC our agents believe in 100% dedication to client satisfaction.  We specialize in property and land acquisition around the Portland Metro and Vancouver, WA area. We delight in working with first time home buyers and sellers to guide them from start to finish. Our doors are always open and we are always happy to assist you with your real estate questions.


Reach out today, we look forward to talking with you!


Todd Clark and Seraina Aguayo (Owners of Respect Realty)

Respect Realty LLC (Expect More)



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Comment balloon 19 commentsRespect Realty LLC • June 01 2009 11:04PM


I haven't done that with hand soap, but I have done it with dishwashing liquid.  And although most of my at home dishes go into the dishwasher I still wash somethings by hand and we also use this same method at the office for washing coffee cups and the coffee pot.  Works great to take regular dishwashing soap and add 3 parts water to 1 part soap and get the nice foam that costs more to purchase.  Saves me money too.

Posted by Tammy Lankford,, Broker GA Lake Sinclair/Eatonton/Milledgeville (Lane Realty Eatonton, GA Lake Sinclair, Milledgeville, 706-485-9668) about 10 years ago

Todd, Great idea for pinching those ever so small pennies these days. Thank you again...

Posted by Paul S. Henderson, REALTOR®, CRS, Tacoma Washington Agent/Broker & Market Authority! (RE/MAX Northwest.) about 10 years ago
what a simple and easy tip to save some money and not really change anything.
Posted by Christine Donovan, Broker/Attorney 714-319-9751 DRE01267479 - Costa M (Donovan Blatt Realty) about 10 years ago

Great tip, can I borrow it?

Posted by Todd Pierceall (Prestige Properties) about 10 years ago

Todd - Great tip, and timely, too!  We go through a ton of hand soap around here, with our family of six.  Thanks!

Posted by Jason Crouch, Broker - Austin Texas Real Estate (512-796-7653) (Austin Texas Homes, LLC) about 10 years ago

Wow!  Just think... for just me a gallon of hand soap could be a lifetime supply!  Every little bit adds up!  Thanks for the tip!

Posted by Steve Shatsky about 10 years ago

Todd, that is the best, practical money saving tip I have heard all year. Thank you!

Posted by Maria Morton, Kansas City Real Estate 816-560-3758 (Chartwell Kansas City Realty) about 10 years ago


I guess I better throw away those moist towelettes I get at restaurants. Is the foam a product of the change in viscosity of the soap and a combination of air? Great tip on saving soap. My hats off to your brother for fostering kids.

Posted by Tom Braatz Waukesha County Real Estate 262-377-1459, Waukesha County Realtor Real Estate agent. SOLD! (Coldwell Banker) about 10 years ago

Hi Todd.  Isn't this sorta like buying a no-name dish detergent that is half the price of something like "Joy" and then using 3 times as much to wash dishes?  Pardon me for being the skeptic that I am; my excuse is that I grew up close to Missouri, the "Show Me" state.

Posted by Richard T. Dolbeare, R(B), ABR, CRS...Hawaii Multi-Island Specialist (Keller Williams Realty Maui) about 10 years ago

Gee, with just tow people in the house I may never have to buy hand soap again. ;-)

@Richard, don't worry I will give it a try and let ya know.

Posted by Don Rogers, Realtor, Broker, CDPE, GRI, OnullFallon MO & St Charles County MO homes (Keller Williams Realty Chesterfield) about 10 years ago

With summer approaching and the kids being home all the time this tip can save. I like to save money. Its top on my list.

Posted by Chip Jefferson (Gibbs Realty and Auction Company) about 10 years ago

Nice idea!

Posted by Jeannette Neerpat, e-Pro Coral Springs/Parkland Real Estate ( about 10 years ago

Todd, the weird part is your brother said the same about you. Great idea that I will have to try, it certainly makes sense that it would work. That is the same system they use in most movie theaters and restaurants now to save money.

Posted by George & Arlene Paukert (Road to Wealth, Inc.) about 10 years ago

Todd....I've just e-mailed this to my wife.  She's a clean freak and a savings NAZI.  She'll be happy to have something like this from me.  Thanks dude.

Posted by Larry Bettag, Vice-President of National Production (Cherry Creek Mortgage Illinois Residential Mortgage License LMB #0005759 Cherry Creek Mortgage NMLS #: 3001) about 10 years ago

Todd - We have used the pump soap for many years. I didn't realize that you could use the liquid soap and add water. All this time, I have been paying for the pump soap. Thanks for the tip, I will add the water now rather than paying the manufacturer to do it.  I imagine that will be a significant savings as well.

Posted by Judy Jennings, Broker - The Lanterns at Warren Woods - Ashland MA (The Green Company) about 10 years ago

Todd: I'm a native Renton boy. The very definition of such is frugality! I never apologize for that. I love Costco. Using a little math applied to the right purchases and I can save a lot of money. I've been laughing for years (and so do my kids) that I bought one of those restaurant sized roles of plastic wrap... 8 1/2 years ago and I'm not quite half way through it!

Enjoy the day...


Posted by Rene Fabre, Marketing in the Digital Age (First American Title) about 10 years ago

Todd --- I have done this in the past, but not lately.  Thanks for the reminder, not so much for me , but my daughter and her family of 5.

Mama Liz's Signature

Posted by Liz Loadholt, Realtor--Broker-in-charge - Trainer--Relocation Director Covering SC (Liz Loadholt- AgentOwned Realty- Covering SC) about 10 years ago


This is a very clever cost cutting idea.  Thank you for the tip!

 Gerry's AR signature

Posted by Gerry Khatchikian, ASA, TRC, SFR about 10 years ago

Richard, I hope you gave it a try and realize that you don't have to use double the amount. All it does is take the regular amount of soap you need and adds air to it. Kids just fill their hands and if their hands are full of foam, they don't take that 2nd or 3rd pump.

Posted by Respect Realty LLC, Brokers - Oregon / SW Washington Real Estate (Respect Realty LLC) about 10 years ago

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