Saving money can be greatly affected by the flat wages that are never increasing while the cost of living continues to increase. When you have to think about how to cope with housing, commuter, and family upkeep costs and still find ways of saving, the whole thing looks almost hopeless. But all is not lost. There are more practical and better ways to manage your finances and still save money. In this article, you will learn Nine obvious ways to save money better than you did.
Here are 9 tips that can help you save money more than you did despite the harsh economic conditions you may be facing.
Make a Budget
You cannot successfully make any savings if there exists no balance between your spending and your income. To get a balance, you must plan your budget carefully. A budget will help you know your current state, and what you have at hand. Your budget should enlist the following;
- A list of all debts you owe other people or institutions
- Credit card statements
- Bank statements
- Monthly bills
- Monthly expenses
These will help you work out your monthly spending. Deduct the totals of the above list from your monthly basic income to get the difference. The difference will give you your true financial position, whether negative or positive. From here you can begin to make priorities on your future spending. That means that if the difference is negative, which is usually the case with most people, you will need to make lots of compromises in the way you spend. You will have to cut off some expenses in favor of others, especially those that aren’t basic needs.
You can also cut some costs on the basic living expenses by assessing which ones can be done without and which ones can be replaced with cheaper ones. The whole idea is to bring your monthly expenditure down as much as possible and get to save money. Here comes the next step;
Track Your Spending
We have got the tendency of thinking that spending on big things is what straps us of cash when in fact, it is the small things that end up costing us. That is why you should keep track of your day-to-day spending to avoid living beyond your means. Keeping track of your spending helps you live within your income. You cannot successfully save money if you aren’t able to observe this basic rule.
Pay Off Your Debts
The debt burden is the biggest culprit of poor saving culture. It is impractical to try to make savings while still dragging along a heavy debt burden. It is in fact, pointless to start saving when you are overburdened with debt. Start by paying off your debts. Add up what goes into debt per month and you will probably find out that debt is the one destroying your ambition to attain financial control. And then you wonder why you haven’t been able to save money for your future needs or important projects. Whatever you may call it, whether credit or table banking, those are just ways of consolidating debt. You better pay them off and you will have a breather and a better opportunity to save.
Set Saving Goals
It is possible to make savings? Sure, you can if you can learn how to address your obstacles and make savings. According to recent research, setting goals can greatly inspire you to save. Think of the prospect of owning a personal car of your choice, a house in the upmarket parts of the city or simply owning a ranch of your own. Such prospects can inspire the culture of saving with very meaningful results. The question of how to save will ultimately arise. To set a goal, you should think of what timelines and time it will take to achieve your goal. This will help you know how much you can save every month. Once you settle on the mode of making savings, it is time to open a savings account.
Assess Your Recurring Expenses
Large recurring expenses can also curtail your ability to make any meaningful savings. You should check your bank statement or homemade records to establish your income’s monthly big spenders. For instance, you may consider restructuring your home loan plan or looking for better-rated insurance plans to cut down on your monthly spending.
Control Your Impulses
Credit cards, ATMs, and the recently introduced mobile banking make it easy to spend money on things we want and not necessarily what we need. Access to online payment is so tempting we end up losing financial control. The impulses are so strong we find ourselves spending needlessly. It is important to develop discipline on how to spend money to save for our set goals or retirement.
Plan Your Meals
Meal planning is one of the easiest ways to save on your spending according to Kalpana Fitzpatrick, the founder of MummyMoneyMatters.com.
By making periodical shopping for foodstuffs, random shopping is discouraged and that means there is less unplanned spending. If there is an open space behind the house, it can be used for green gardening to cut down spending on vegetables, onions, and other perishable foodstuffs such as fruits. Money that was planned for these items can be put into a savings account.
Stop being a Brand Loyalist
Brands have found ways to keep their customers loyal even though they may be selling their products at higher prices. Don’t be a brand loyalist if you want to save. Check prices often, both from brands and from other players in the market. It is possible to find an item selling at a very price from the local kiosk while it is twice as much at your local brand. Don’t allow yourself to be driven by loyalty and lose the opportunity to save.
Avoid Thrift or Poverty Mentality
A thrift is a state in which a person decides to keep money safely in a bank or any other trusted place for fear that if he uses it today, even if it is for a worthy cause, he will have no money to spend tomorrow. Thrift is considered a way to save many people, but according to financial experts, it is frugal and can land you into deeper problems by creating a poverty mentality. A poverty mentality can drain your strength to positively take meaningful business risks to actualize your ambitions.
The best way to save and get ahead financially is to focus on earning, saving, and investing. When you invest in a worthy asset such as a home or business, you tend to create more opportunities to earn because you are not withholding what you already have. You are expanding your opportunities, says Emma Johnson, founder of WealthySingleMommy.com.
Poverty or lack mentality is one preoccupied with a shortage of money: all the things the person doesn’t have and can’t get, says Randy Gage, writing for getmotivation.com. These people tend to have self-limiting beliefs and make decisions based on fear of loss or failure. In contrast, people with a prosperity or abundance mentality base their decisions on what the possible benefits are. Being objective and open-minded can be more result-oriented. Making bold steps into your future may seem to be clouded in doubt but it could push you into realizing unbelievable achievements.
In light of these conditions, taking control of your financial life requires openness and transparency especially among partners, because you will be more exposed to better ideas as you share your aspirations. Keeping your money and plans away from your partner can have grave consequences. These tricks can help you change your financial life if practiced.
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