It’s Not As Hard As You Think.
The new year is here and the resolutions are set! So you want to save money in 2018, right?
I’m going to share with you my favorite top ten ways to save money.
1. Calculate Monthly Income & Expenses
Do you actually know how much bacon you’re bringing home to the table? Create a sheet, write down your monthly income (after taxes) at the top of the sheet, and below your net income, document all the of your expenses. Go back at least 3-6 months, assess the past expenditures and eliminate any unnecessary monthly expenses. YNAB (You Need A Budget) is a great online tool to use for those who wish to get supremely organized with reviewing their monthly spending and want to take it to another level.
2. Pack a Lunch
Who doesn’t enjoy dining out? You don’t have to cook and it’s super convenient, but you pay for that convenience. Try skipping every other month and do you’re best to not dine out at all for 4 weeks straight – this includes the popular infamous Starbucks runs, and any other beverage or snack you grab from a shop that you can easily pack from home. You’ll be surprised how much money you save when you stock your home with things you’re overpaying for when you’re out and about. Even better, why not try this for an entire year, and save dinging out for special occasions only.
3. Lock Up Your Credit Cards
Set aside your cash budget each week and spend on items you can only afford with cash (or debit card). Set a goal where you avoid using credit cards for 3 months two times a year.
4. Get Rid of Your Cable
I cannot believe some people still have a cable bill. If you’re trying to build an empire, stop wasting your time watching TV. The best way to do that is cut your cable television. Of course, we all need some visual entertainment, so subscribe to services like Hulu or NetFlix and cut your cable bill down by at least 75%.
5. Stop Financing Your Purchases
We live in a culture where we all want the latest new item right aways, regardless if we can afford it or not. Practice self-discipline and learn how to save for large purchases. You’ll feel proud and value your purchases more.
6. Buy Things You NEED
Stop buying stuff you do not need. If it’s a want, put it down and walk away (or for my online shoppers – remove the items from your cart and close the window). If you don’t need it, don’t buy it and each time you get that urge to impulsively buy, put the money it was going to cost you in a jar – you’ll be surprised how much useless shopping adds up.
7. Quit All Costly Bad Habits
Do you smoke? Drink? Party? Gamble? Indulge at Starbucks? Quit! It’s bad for your health, state of mind and your pockets.
8. Dine In Before Going Out
Hitting up a movie theater with bae, gonna catch the basketball game live? Eat a hearty meal at home before heading out for entertainment to help you prevent yourself from overspending on marked up food and drinks.
9. Avoid Groupon (& Other Deal Websites)
Groupon is great! However, unless you absolutely need to purchase something, head over to the deal websites with a plan or avoid them like the plague – it’s a trap to get you to buy things and activities you don’t really need and can’t really afford.
10. Learn to Love Budgeting and Saving Money
It can seem like a daunting task, and may seem un-fun at first, but turn it into a game and stay focused on the end goal. As you begin to see your savings grow, you’ll begin to love the frugal lifestyle changes you’ve implemented throughout the year.
Do you know of some great ways to save money? Share them in the comments below.