Saving more money is a goal that most people have. Certainly for a few rare individuals saving money comes naturally. But for most of us saving money is a habit that we must first learn, then adopt and commit to.
To save more money means you must have more money to save. This can be accomplished in two ways: you can cut expenses and free up funds to save, or you can earn more income. Let’s explore a few simple ways to cut your spending without foregoing all luxuries you enjoy.
Simple Ways to Slash Spending – Every Day Expenses
Every day expense add up fast. As you fork over $4 for your favorite Starbuck’s sugar-laden latte every morning on your way to work, it may not seem like much. But stop and do the math. If you drink a $4 latte even just 3 days a week, for a year, you will spend $624.00 on espresso topped with steamed milk. That’s two car payments. That’s a weekend getaway. That’s $624.00 that could be funneled directly into savings.
Take the time to do the math on your every day expenses. What does it add up to over a year? Is the item you’re constantly purchasing really worth that much to you? Perhaps you could enjoy a latte once a week, or even every other week.
Simple Ways to Slash Spending – Annual Expenses
Annual expenses only crop up once every twelve-months, so their easy to forget about when we’re considering how to cut expenses. Sit down and make a list of all of your annual expenses. Think about insurance (car, home, renters etc.), memberships, subscriptions, auto registration, wellness vet visits for your beloved animal companion, and tax preparation fees.
Review the list you just made. Are there annual fees you can get rid of? Are there things on automatic renewal that you can cancel? Do you actually read the magazines you subscribe to? When was the last time you reviewed your insurance policies to see if you could lower your premiums?
Simple Ways to Slash Spending – Slashing Subscriptions
Speaking of those magazines you don’t read… make a list of all of your monthly and yearly subscriptions. You may be surprised to find that you could slash your spending by hundreds of dollars each month!
Do you really use your gym membership often enough to make the monthly expense worth it? If not, consider paying per gym visit, or investing in an at-home work out DVD series.
Do you really watch enough TV to make your $100+ cable bill worth it? If not, consider ditching the huge cable bill and switching to Netflix streaming or Hulu. Better yet, do you have Amazon Prime? That membership comes with Amazon streaming for no added cost.
Are you paying for Sirius radio, OnStar Guidance, cloud storage, or any other random monthly subscription? It may only be $10 a month, so you forget about it and continue to pay even if you don’t use the service. But that’s $120 a year. That’s a full day at the spa. Or, $120 to funnel directly into savings.
Simple Ways to Save Money
Once you slash your spending, you can put that money directly into savings.
Another simple way to save is to set up your bank account to automatically put a specific percent of your salary into a savings account. Many banks offer this service free of charge. Every time you get paid, save a specific amount. Ideally you’re saving 15% or more, but don’t get discouraged if you can’t save that much. Literally every penny counts, so even if you can only save 5%, do it.
If you’re a person who is tempted by the cookie jar, consider holding your savings account at a financial institution where you don’t typically bank. Forgo getting a debit card or check book for the account. This way you would have to visit a bank branch to access your money. That added step might prevent you from unnecessarily dipping into your savings.
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The Law Offices of Barbara B. Braziel helps people get out of debt. We offer free consultations to people in Savannah, GA and the surrounding areas.
We are a debt relief agency. We help people file for bankruptcy relief under the U.S. Bankruptcy Code.