Money Saving Tips
The high-speed nature of today’s world often makes it seem hard to slow down and focus on saving money. Many are living paycheck to paycheck. Some are barely managing to do that. Others are wondering if they’ll ever be able to enjoy a relaxing vacation or save up for a second car. No matter what your objective, however, there are money saving tips. We’re sharing a few today. These tips are fast, easy, and most importantly, a great head start for healthier saving habits down the road.
1. Analyze and Build a Budget
Prior to any actual cutting back or savings tricks, it’s important to go over your purchase history. Determine what your vices are. Figure out what is necessary and what is a luxury that needs to be axed for the time being.
These days, through the power of the internet, it’s a whole lot easier to see the layout of your financial life. We suggest mint.com. It’s easy to signup and even easier to load up your accounts. Instead of fussing with a mountain of receipts and bank statements, analyze everything right on your computer screen.
2. Sell Items You Already Own
Once you’ve analyzed your purchase history, there will for sure be items that you now deem expendable. Whether it be impulse media purchases or that foosball table your family room “just needed”.
Considering that there are eBay sellers netting $20,000 per month, there is no reason to scoff at this idea. While we’re not suggesting you drop everything to become a full-time eBay seller, it could be wise to offload excess media, clothing, and trinkets.
For larger items, such as furniture or the aforementioned foosball table, you may want to opt for Craigslist over eBay, due to shipping & handling hassle. If you’re uncomfortable with Craigslist, perhaps holding a yard sale would be more up your alley.
Whatever the case, the goal is cutting down on excess while salvaging a bit of the money squandered through the original purchase.
Eat At Home
There is without a doubt a cost for convenience. While dining out at the local Italian or Mexican restaurant every week may be a family pastime, it is certainly cutting into your budget in a major way.
See, for instance what Seattle Pi learned from local restaurateurs about their pizza: “The large cheese pie that sells for $16 to $20 probably only cost $2.50 in ingredients.” While your homemade pizza might not have the atmosphere, the price different is insane and pizza surely isn’t the only high-profit maker for restaurants.
Some of you may already have realized that dining out isn’t the wise decision, but perhaps you still think that dining out for your work lunch isn’t hurting anyone. However, according to Life In Charge, packing a lunch can save you up to $60 a month.
That’s $720 a year. When you consider that savings possibility, there’s really no reason not to join the packed lunch bunch.
Rent a room out
This isn’t going to be ideal for everyone, but renting out unused or underutilized space within your home can be a great way to build funds. It won’t be comfortable at first, but the added funds and the peace of mind gained from maximizing space will make it worth it in the end.
Alternatively, if you’re uncomfortable with the idea of a new roommate yet still have the extra space, it may be time to consider relocation. Even if you can afford the excess space, you are leaving potential savings on the table.
Drop That Cable Bill
According to NBC News, a cable subscription per month is $99 on average. These are not static prices either, as cable companies have increased prices by 8% a year. It’s time to consider alternatives. Many are moving on from traditional cable and relying instead on the internet and web-based streaming services such as Netflix.
Internet bills themselves are rising as well, but they’re still half the cost of a cable bill, on average. When combined with Netflix’s basic $9.99 a month plan, they’re still well under cable’s staggering $99 a month.
This Is A Fresh Start
Saving can be fast. Saving can be easy. It can be both at the same time. You can travel across the country, or even the world, with your savings. You can also simply stay at home and be prepared for what lies ahead in your elder years.
]When you save, the possibilities are nearly endless. However, quick and easy fixes or schemes are only a band-aid. The true possibilities are unlocked when your mindset flips from quick and fast fixes to long term goals and healthy money management.
You might need money quickly today, but do not set these savings tips aside once you’ve met your initial goals. Think of this instead as a fresh start toward a new lifestyle of sensible decision making.