In the days of instant results, it’s more important than ever to be able to stay focused on saving money any way you can. So to help you monitor your spending habits and cut expenses, here are some easy ways you can save every day—starting right now.
1. Designate a “Money date.” Commit to sitting down with your money once a week for a money date. Spend this time, to review your accounts, compare your spending against your financial goals and updating your budget. Like any relationship, if you want your financial life to improve, you must spend time with your money. No exceptions.
2. Plan and Cook your food at Home. Taking a few hours every weekend to grocery shop and plan for the week will definitely save you money, as dining out is the No. 1 expense for most households. By eating at home, you save money that would otherwise be spent on gas, tax and tip—and you usually save on calories, too.
3. Cut out cable. Gasp! Cut out TV?! Never! But with services like Hulu, Netflix and Amazon Prime, you can now watch your favorite TV shows and movies for a fraction of the cost of cable TV. By switching over to an online service or cutting out TV altogether, you can save that money for another financial goal—such as paying off debt, traveling or saving for a down payment on a home.
4. Host a potluck. The more friends you have, the more money you spend on lunch dates, birthday parties, and gifts. Switch it up and, instead of meeting over a fancy dinner at an expensive Restaurant, host a potluck and have everyone bring his or her favorite dish. That way, you can save money you’d spend on restaurant extras, such as tax, tip, and parking—and you’ll usually have a more intimate meal together, too.
5. Leverage lodging rental websites. Finding a place to stay while traveling is so convenient when you use a lodging rental website such as Airbnb, Travelmob or Housetrip. You can often find a place that has a kitchen (so you can cook meals at home to save money) at a rate that’s comparable to hotels. You can even rent out your own place on sites such as Airbnb while you travel to make some extra cash to pay for your own travel expenses. It’s a win-win scenario.
6. Make coffee at home. This one’s not my favorite, as I absolutely love going to coffee shops and drinking delicious organic coffee. However, spending $4 to $5 on coffee every day definitely adds up. So try my approach and allow yourself a few days a week to buy coffee at cafés, and make it at home the rest of the time.
7. Wait 48 hours before you click “buy.” Since we can have anything we want these days with just the click of a button (there’s that instant gratification again), you need to find a system to help buffer your impulse purchases.
Example: Wait 48 hours before spending money on things that cost more than a certain amount. When you do, you will find that most of the time, the item was more of a “want” than a “need.” Plus, you’ll save money and work toward being more mindful of your spending.
8. DIY as Much as you can. Self-care is important—but going to spas and getting pedicures, massages, etc., can really add up. Allow yourself a certain amount to spend on these things; then use blogs and apps like Pinterest to find at-home beauty treatments to help you save money. Often you can find a DIY organic option using common household or kitchen products.
9. Balance your “FOMO/YOLO” mindset. With social media controlling our lives like never before, people often fall victim to the “fear of missing out” phenomenon and instead go overboard with a “you only live once” mentality.
While it is important to live in the present and soak up each precious moment of life, make sure you balance that out by saving for your financial future, too. Without checks and balances in place, you can find yourself saying yes to everything and spending more money than you have—all due to the fear of missing out.
10. Work more. Last but never the easy one, Try for a second job. When you’re working a lot, there’s not much time left to shop and spend money. So stay busy and pursue a career you love.
All the Best… Happy Saving & Happy Holidays…