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Eight classes that will help save New Yorkers money in the long run

Eight classes that will help save New Yorkers money in the long run
Photograph: Courtesy CC/Flickr/star5112

It’s just so easy to be lazy in the on-demand economy. Nowhere is this more apparent than New York City. You can pay someone else to wash your laundry, fetch your groceries, repair your clothes, shine your shoes, walk your dog, clean your apartment, cook all your meals… the list goes on and on.

Outsourcing every little want and need might be convenient, but it sure ain’t cheap. And in a city where the price of everything from rent to subway fare to a cup of coffee seems to be constantly on the rise, couldn’t we all use a little extra cash? Instead of relying on Postmates and TaskRabbit, learn all the skills you need to do it yourself (and start saving in small ways every day) with these useful classes in NYC. Your wallet will thank you later.

Knife Skills at the Institute of Culinary Education

Learning how to handle a knife properly is the first step in learning to cook. Being able to wield a sharp knife with ease not only keeps you safe, but also makes you faster and more efficient in the kitchen. This course will cover slicing, dicing, chopping, mincing and more—everything you need to know to become a pro.

Meal Planning 101 at the Brooklyn Kitchen

If you’re buying a whole bunch of cilantro for a recipe that only calls for a few tablespoons, you’re wasting money. Same with that “value pack” of yogurt that you couldn’t finish before it went bad. Find out what habits you need to change to work smarter, not harder in the kitchen—from grocery shopping to selecting recipes to your cooking itself.  

Culinary Boot Camp for Everyone at Home Cooking New York

Go for broke with this all-encompassing four-week cooking class. Your instructor will cover everything from choosing the right cuts of meat to seasoning techniques to whipping up quick pan sauces to basic baking skills. At the end of the course, you’ll be able to throw together a home-cooked meal worthy of any New York City bistro.

All About Containers: Veggies and Herbs at the New York Botanical Garden

Even the tiniest studio apartment has room for a container of basil—maybe even enough space to grow some tomatoes, peppers or cucumbers, too! It doesn’t get more locally sourced than that. Join a class at the New York Botanical Garden to see how it’s done.  

Home-Brewing Methods at Joe Coffee

Do the math: If you’re spending $2 for your daily cup of coffee, you’re wasting a whopping $60 a month. Double that number if you frequent high-end cafes like Blue Bottle or Joe Coffee. The obvious solution here is to start brewing your own coffee. Take one of Joe Coffee’s classes on brewing with a French press, Aeropress or Chemex so you don’t have to sacrifice on quality.   

Bike Maintenance 101 at Recycle-a-Bicycle

There’s really no reason not to start biking: you’ll save on subway fare, reduce emissions and squeeze in some extra exercise. Of course, if you have to take your bike to the shop for every flat and broken spoke, you’re not going to save any money in the long run. Sign up for one of the hands-on maintenance classes through Bike New York to find out how to keep your wheels in good working order.  

House and Home Classes at City Tech CUNY

Homeowners should consider these classes a requirement, and any renter who’s ever dealt with a less-than-prompt super could probably benefit from the skills, too. Once you know how to patch a wall, stop a leaking toilet, change a light fixture and fix a million other little things around the house, you’ll never have to pay someone to do it for you again. (Or miss work because the plumber can only come between 9am and 5pm on a Wednesday.)  

Hem and Button Workshop at M Avery Designs

Asking the tailor to repair every missing button and tiny rip gets expensive. Plus, it’s just a waste of time: After you learn the basics of hand-stitching in this introductory sewing class, you’ll be able to take care of minor repairs in just a few minutes. Bonus: If you have something that needs hemming, bring it to class to practice on. See, you’re already saving money!