Easy Ways To Save Money
Easy Ways to Save Money
Money. For many finances are a foreign concept. Many of us tend to whip in the wind endless waiting for a higher paying positions. Easier said than done for sure. The ten below tips are from Bankrate.com. I’ve included the link below if you would like to read a more detailed analysis on how each technique works.
1. Set a savings goal
2. Choose a savings account thoughtfully
3. Make savings automatic
4. Establish an emergency fund
5. Monitor your monthly expenses…
6. … then set a budget
7. Be smart with shopping
8. Take advantage of apps
9. Consider a flexible spending account
10. Check your progress … and reward yourself when you reach your goal!
Easy Ways To Get Started Saving
Some of you are probably thinking I don’t have extra cash to save. But here are a few ways I save money.
Cash Machines = Money Pit
1. Cash machines cost $2-3.00 per use. I will walk my happy behind into a gas station and buy gum for .75 and get cash back.
a. This is small technique, but really adds up over time. Depending how often a cash machine is utilized, this could really add up.
Avoid Cashing Checks At Walmart
2. Don’t cash checks in places like Walmart.
a. According to Walmart’s site, it cost $3.00 to cash a check under 1K or make a credit card payment. If the check is over 1K the cost doubles to $6.00.
b. Again, the fee isn’t huge but depending on how often a person is paid, this can be anywhere from $6-12.00 a month. Again, you can add additional cost if you make credit card payments.
Starbucks ~ A Very Expensive Habit
3. If you get Starbucks every morning don’t.
a. Buy yourself an espresso machine and make it at home. We bought one in Hawaii, but hardly use it. Once we hit 40, we can’t take the extra calories.
b. Depending on which size/type you get you can spend anywhere from $3-6.00 each morning.
c. Even if we average the cost and conservatively say $4.50 per day and average a moth to 30 days the cost is $135.00 monthly
d. Duplicate this for avid energy drink drinkers
Bank With No Minimum Balance Or Monthly Fee
4. Find a bank with no minimum balance.
a. The bank will not charge a monthly fee even if there is .50 cents in the account.
b. No obligation to write checks, but get a debit card and save the Walmart fee.
c. A bank account will also eliminate the need to even go to the store. With direct deposit, another chore is removed from the to-do list.
Hardest, But Most Important…Don’t Impulse Shop
5. Don’t impulse shop!!
a. This one is a little harder to measure. However, I only buy things on sale. Not because I need to, but because I’m not going to pay more than I think it’s worth.
b. Don’t purchase more than is needed. We are all guilty of the bulging closet. I’m included. This is certainly an area which could be cut back in order to save more.
Access to a 401K? Use It
6. If you have a 401K, especially if you have company match, use it.
a. If you have access to a 401K at work you should be contributing. This is twofold. First, you lower your taxable income, which helps you out at tax time. Secondly, if there is a company match make them pay you. Normally it’s around 5% a company matched. You put in $10 they put in $10. Make them pay it. You deserve it.
b. Utilizing the company match is like forcing the company to give you a raise. All the money matched is an addition to your wages.
c. As far as lowering your taxes goes, you will likely not even see a difference. Why? Because the money placed in the 401K is pre-tax. Therefore, your pay check may go up a dollar or two. It’s like taking the money from taxes and putting it in your own pocket. Who doesn’t want to do that?
Consumed By Impulse
I don’t know all of the people of the world, but I have many friends who at one time or another picked something up they may have liked, but didn’t have the money for. Over time we realize we are doing the same thing. No one wants to look like the broke friend. When I was younger my friend wanted everything she saw, lunch, Starbucks and anything else that glittered. I did notice she swiped her credit card for all of it. I guess she didn’t have any cash in the bank. My point, she was living outside her means. All she is really doing is creating a burden she has to worry about paying back.
A Car Payment ~ Anyone Can Pay One
I had a friend in high school who kept telling people, “nice car payment.” My friends car in contrast was paid off. She was the smart one. Everyone else had new car, rims…whatever. Her point though is valid. By trying to show off what type of car you drive is nothing. That is a car payment. Truly rich people pay cash. My point. We need to stop burdening ourselves with debt to impress others. I have a Honda Accord. I’ve had it for just over two years and gotten promoted twice. The amount of times I’ve been asked when I’m trading up borders on the ridiculous.
Keep in mind I’m cheap. I didn’t buy a car at the top of my buying power. When I purchased my Honda, I bought a car that would do what I wanted, get me to work. I live six miles away from work. While driving to work, I get to hear one, maybe two songs before I arrive. In that short span I’m not paying 50K for a car. Anyways, once it’s paid off, I’m not trading it until it dies or gets wrecked. Which reminds me, unless you want to make a payment for the rest of your life, don’t lease. That however, is a story for another day.
10 Great Tips For Saving Money ~ http://www.bankrate.com/finance/savings/tips/
Walmart Check Cashing Fees ~ https://www.walmart.com/cp/check-cashing/632047
8 Financial Tips for Young Adults ~ http://www.investopedia.com/articles/younginvestors/08/eight-tips.asp