Saving money is always a good idea, no matter what you are planning to spend it on. You could be saving for a vacation, a new car, a wedding, or even the future. It never hurts to be prepared. This way, you will not be caught off guard by an ill-timed emergency such as needing to bail your loved one out of jail.
Here are some tips to help you save more money.
- You probably already split each paycheck into: needs, personal, and savings. Needs are for necessary payments such as rent and groceries. Personal is for things like going out for happy hour with friends and making a trip to the mall. Savings is self-explanatory, a percentage of your paycheck that goes into the bank that you do not touch. Cut even just 1 or 2% more from personal spending and put it towards your savings.
- Check out other banking options that you are not currently using. You may find one that offers better perks and a better interest rate. If so, move your bank account over there.
- Cut out fast food. Although one happy meal seems like such a steal, each happy meal you purchase adds up.
- Eat out less, overall. Instead, make a grocery list every week and stick to that list when you are at the store. This helps ensure you do not over-purchase and buy items that were not originally on your list, such as a box of cookies. Meal-prepping for a week is helpful for your wallet, and your diet! A plate of pasta can cost you $10+ at a restaurant, but 1-pound of pasta noodles and a jar of pasta sauce can cost you less than $5 at the grocery store and feeds 4 people.
- Cancel unused and under-used memberships and subscriptions where you are not getting your money’s worth. This includes the gym, streaming services, magazines, and more.
- Stop purchasing the most expensive item and brand name at the store. Go for a generic brand instead. This goes for food, medicine (unless your doctor insists on a name brand), and even clothing. Why spend $120 on jeans when you can spend only $30?
- Go through your personal items and gather up everything you no longer wear, use, watch, read, and everything else that is still in good condition, but just collecting dust. Hold a yard sale to get rid of your clutter and make some money. Whatever does not sell can be taken to Goodwill, which can be written off on your taxes.
- Saving money does not mean you need to live an uneventful life. Go out and look for events that are more affordable or better yet, free to attend! There are plenty of community events that do not have an entrance fee, from concerts and museums to parks and beaches, there is plenty to do.
- Throw spare change into a jar. Once it is full, take it to the bank to deposit – you might be surprised at how much you saved up by spare coins alone.
- Monitor your spending and your bank accounts. First see how much you spend each week, on average. Then try to reasonably reduce that cost, even if it is by $10 per week. Make sure to save your receipts so you can cross check that payment with what shows up on your bank statement.
There are plenty more tips to saving money that you can find online but the last one we will leave you with is to not give up. Just like people who are trying to lose weight are told not to weigh themselves daily, but rather weekly or monthly, you should avoid counting your savings daily and instead, do it weekly and monthly. You will see that your small daily savings add up big time. Hopefully you can save this money for pleasurable spending in your future. If you do end up needing it for immediate emergencies, at least it is available for you so you do not have to stress.