Bill and I are really on it folks. And I’m not kidding. We are looking at every single thing we do and we are trying to be just a little bit smarter. Is it helping? I think so – I really do! I’m seeing a decrease in our debt and I am finding that our habits are becoming much easier to maintain.
Here are 8 tips to help you save BIG:
Skip the ATMS Outside Of Your Bank’s System
I know it’s easy to stop at your local 7-11 and grab some money. But those $2.50 surcharges will add up before you know it! A little here and a little there could turn out to average $20 a month if you aren’t careful. Times that by 12 and you are in the hundreds by the end of the year. For what? For nothing! For not being careful. For not planning ahead.
Start Using Cash
My husband gave this tip last week during my round up post and you know what? It really works. When you have to give cold hard cash to pay for a purchase… you are more aware of what you are spending. The swipe of a credit card means NOTHING. Now, when I go shopping for food or clothes or gas, I use cash and it curbs my spending. It also helps keep my monthly bills down when the credit card companies start knocking.
If You Must Go Out – Look For Bargains
We started to make a list of places in the area that offer free meals for kids. Why should we pay for the children if we don’t have to? We don’t go out that much anymore. That’s another way to save, right? But when we do, we make sure we take advantage of it all. Information is KEY!
Stop Acting Impulsively
You see a TV. You want a TV. You see a new pair of shoes. You want a new pair of shoes. The new iPhone just came out. Guess who is online making an order? YOU! See… act…spend.
Moving forward you should no longer make any purchases on impulse. Instead, you should sit on it. You should think about it and really consider whether or not you need. Because if I was a betting woman… I’d say that you don’t.
Pay Minimum Balances On Time
This was a foolish mistake that my husband and I made a few times last year. We got messy with our mail and forgot to make a few payments. Those finance charges are horrifically unnecessary and I can’t tell you how much we spent on NOTHING. UGH!
Start With Short Term And Easy Goals
We decided that we will put away 10% of every paycheck that comes into this house moving forward into a savings account. The promise is that we will never take out of that account. So, if I make $500 then we will put away $50 for a rainy day. And PS – that rainy day is called retirement.
10% is easy enough. It’s doable. It’s happening. Make your own goals and start small.
Bring Lunch to Work / Pack It With You
Going to the park? Fill up those water bottles. Have a full day at the office? Better brown bag it. Do you know how much money you are spending when you order out? Lunch is at least $10 a day which equals $50 a week. Start buying in bulk and start planning ahead.
Get Some Support
You can’t do this on your own if you are part of a team. If your husband / wife doesn’t care about saving money and isn’t changing his/her lifestyle then this isn’t going to work. Everyone in the house has to be on the same page. You cannot be the hero but you can be the captain. Everyone in the family must be on the team to make this a successful change.
That’s it for this week! What do you think about what I offered up? Completely possible. Completely within reach, right?! I’m doing it so I know it’s true.
For more posts from the 10 Week Budget Management Series, click here.