Saving money sounds like a real challenge for most of us. It’s especially scary for those living paycheck to paycheck. Where do you even begin? How can you cut back? It turns out that it can be done – if you’re willing to put in some effort and pay more attention to your spending habits. Of course, not everything works for everyone. However, we did find some excellent tips to help you start saving money.
Plan Out Your Meals
Most people tend to spend more on groceries than they actually need to. Think of all those times you were out grocery shopping and decided to grab a couple of extra things here and there. Well, all those little things add up! Before you go grocery shopping from now on, plan out the meals you want to have that week and check what you might already have in your pantry. This way, you’ll be able to make a concise list of what you need and avoid spending money on things you don’t.
Reduce Electricity Use
Another small way to cut expenses is by using less electricity. What you need to do is start taking shorter showers, fix any leaky pipes you may have, wash your clothes on cold (it works the same as hot, believe us), install dimmer switches, and energy-saving LED lightbulbs. You might be thinking of purchasing new energy-efficient appliances, but they can be terribly expensive themselves. Instead, just be more mindful – don’t leave lights on when you’re not in the room, and unplug gadgets you aren’t using. All these things will help lower your electricity bill.
Pack Lunch and Stop Getting Take-Out So Often
Instead of buying lunch at work every day, start making your own to bring along. It might seem harmless to buy lunch a couple of times a week, but the amounts you end up spending are much larger than you’d realize. In fact, a lot of the time you can buy a whole week’s worth of groceries for the price of two meals out! Avoid this by preparing your food at home and eating dinner at home as well. You’ll see how much money you save as a result.
Implement a Spending Freeze
Try and set a goal for yourself – don’t buy nonessentials for a week or even a month. Think of it as a challenge. While you’re doing this, take note of all the things you already have that you’re grateful for. It will help put things into perspective and reduce your itch to buy more things you might not need. To make this challenge work, prepare food you already have, avoid stores you know tempt you, and say no to things that aren’t basic necessities.
Sell Things You Don’t Need
If you want to save some money while also decluttering, take a leaf out of Marie Kondo’s book and sell items that don’t bring you joy anymore. Anything from furniture to clothing to gadgets you can sell when they’re in good condition. It will feel so good once you do this, and you’ll have made some money!
Automatically Save Money
Last but certainly not least, let’s talk about the most obvious way to save money – a savings account! If you’re determined to save money, open up an account to automatically transfer funds from your checking account every month. If this sounds scary to you, you can set up a direct deposit to automatically transfer 10% of each paycheck into a savings account. This way, you won’t have to think about it at all.