Start saving money today! We all have different reasons for which we want to start saving money. Some may be to pay off debt. While others may be to save for a big purchase for a car or a home or a vacation. Whatever your reason may be, there are a few things you can do immediately that will guarantee you save money you thought you never had. This list provides you with the easiest ways to get control of your money and where it is going. And this helps you redirect your money to your savings instead. You can implement all these methods, or just a few to see immediate results.
1. Stop Eating Out
This might be one of the greatest money suckers in your life. While having an active social life that involves food is great, it can also be very harsh on the wallet. If you’re eating a sit down meal once a day that averages $10, you are spending on average $300 a month, and $3600 bucks a year on just 1 meal out. For one individual (depending on where you live) $300 can last you almost all of your groceries for the month.
While some may recommend going for happy hour to cut down on costs associated with social outings, happy hours can get pricey too. Every time you think “its just $5”, it keeps adding up. And before you know it, you’ve spent the same or even more if you had got a full meal. Cut this out of your life and have people over at your place to socialize.
2. Auto Save Money
This is for those who do have an income. Whatever your income is, try to set up an auto-payment from your checking account to your savings account. When you don’t see your money in your checking account, you are far less prone to spending it. This is the fastest way to start saving money that you are making.
3. Sign up for Cash Back Services
If you purchase anything online, you can probably start saving money on almost anything too. There are a lot of companies that pay you back for purchases. Some of them include RetailMeNot, Ibotta, Piggy, Honey, and Rakuten. Most of these companies are free to sign up and if you just download the extension on your browser, it will do the work for you and deposit funds into your account. This makes it so easy to save a few extra bucks.
4. Cancel Subscriptions and Memberships
1. Gym memberships:
Do you have a gym membership that you use at least 3 times a week? No? Cancel that immediately. Even if you may be going once in a while, it may not be worth it. Gym memberships are a drain on your pocket. And you could just exercise at home watching someone online guide you through any activity. Need to run? Run outdoors.
Whatever the subscription is to – a massage parlor, a streaming service, or whatever – think about whether you really need it. Is it adding to your mental or physical health? If not, cancel every subscription that doesn’t fit this question.
3. Product/Store Emails
Unsubscribe to emails you get from your favorite store. We never actually think about a store as much as we do when we see an email from them in our inbox. Unsubscribing to them will prevent you from having impulse purchases when you see those colorful images of that dress that’s on sale.
5. Stop Drinking from Plastic Water Bottles
You can actually pay a hefty price for buying all those bottles of water in a month. Cut out all that fancy water, and get a filter and if you must look fancy, get yourself a yeti or hydro flask bottle and keep your filtered water in there. At least you’d be popular with the millennials. And you’d be doing good for the turtles and our earth by reducing your plastic use.
6. Cook Fresh & Stop Processed Foods
This one doesn’t just help you save money; it saves your waistline too. Whenever you shop, stay on the periphery of the store. That is where you can get your fresh produce and other healthy foods, versus the inside aisles. The inside aisles have all the processed stuff and can cost quite a bit on your wallet. And when you start cooking these fresh produce, that will help you stay healthy and more meals than if you purchased from the inside aisles.
7. Cancel Cable
Do you really need cable? Let’s be honest, no one really does. And will all the streaming services and free YouTube, why would you spend on 200+ channels that you never watch anyways? If you must have some TV, sign up for one streaming service to satisfy your need for the screen.
8. Live by the 30 day rule
We all have impulse purchases. What is not healthy though, is giving in to each and every impulse you have to purchase everything you see. We know that buying things will never make us truly happy. And the urge to buy comes from the need to make our selves happy. If you live by the 30-day rule, you put off that purchase for 30 days, and if you really want or need it on day 31, go ahead and purchase it. That way you wont feel remorse because you’ve had 30 solid days to think (or forget) about it.
9. Pay with Cash
When you start paying with cash, things change. You then have a limited amount of money that you can work with. Usually credit card companies purposely hike up our credit lines more than what we earn, so that we spend more and create a balance that will never get paid off. Even if you do pay it off within a few months, they (CC company) has already made some interest on you. When you start paying with a debit card or cash, you are conscious about overspending. This will help you stop the spend and start the save.
10. Skip your Morning Coffee
I don’t mean skip the coffee al together; I mean skip the one you get from your local barista. If you’re spending about $5 a day on coffee, you are spending on average $1825 a year on just that tiny cup of joe. Instead, invest in a good coffee maker and make it at home. You save money and time going to a barista. Or instant Nescafé coffee works too!
We grow up in a culture that more things and spending more money will make us happy. It’s quite the opposite. Spending less and not trying to keep up with the Joneses is a far better approach to saving money and being happy too. While it can seem overwhelming to do all these things, start with one thing and slowly knock out the others. Because, most of these things are a one time set up, or mind change, that you don’t have to remember to do every month. Watch your savings grow and how that will actually make you happier.
Do you have debt? Read this article to jump-start you into paying that off while you’re on the trajectory of saving money.
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