With the economy the way it is today, many people are finding ways to cut back and save money without compromising their lifestyle.
Sticking to a budget or cutting costs isn’t always the easiest thing to do but with some practice and guidance it can be done.
Below are 10 ways you can do so without feeling a major impact on your life.
1. Keep a Budget
With a budget, you always know what you are spending. It pays off to be realistic. Whether you use a simple ledger book or a computer program, make sure you know where all your money is going by writing everything down. Make a budget and stick to it.
2. Gift Ideas
Keep a list of gift ideas for your family and loved ones. If you know ahead of time what a perfect gift would be, you are less likely to overspend. You might not think of these things during the holidays when you are in a last-minute rush, so keep your list ongoing the entire year.
3. Save For Future
Always take 10 percent of your income and put it in a savings account before you do anything. Now you know what is left, and this is what you have to spend. Never dip into the savings account unless it is an absolute emergency.
4. Plan Ahead
Always make sure you have some money in the bank for an emergency. Experts suggest three to six months of your normal living expenses should be set aside if something drastic happens. It may sound like a lot at first, but after you put money away every month, it will add up fast.
5. Be Organized
When you keep an organized home, you will not spend as much money on items that might be hiding in other places. The same goes for your kitchen cupboards, pantry and refrigerator. Organize your things before you go shopping to save money.
6. Shop Without Kids
Try to do your shopping without kids. Most people can get a buggy, start shopping and spend $100 in no time at all. With kids, you tend to spend even more. Kids want everything they see. This is a good reason to shop online as well. If you do, you are less likely to purchase any incidentals.
7. Reduce and Recycle
A simple lifestyle is about reducing the urge to over-consume. It includes spending less on material things so that you have more time to spend with your family. Make changes that help your pocketbook as well as the environment. Install a water saving kit on your toilet to save money. Write on the back sides of paper. Use only reusable containers for lunches. All these things add up and help save money and the environment.
8. Shopping With Coupons
Use coupons every time you go shopping. You will be surprised to see how much money you can save from clipping coupons and shopping the sales.
9. Lower Interest Rates
If you have credit cards with balances, call the credit card companies and ask for a lower rate. Sometimes, it’s as simple as that! By doing so, you will save a lot of money every month.
10. Shop Insurance Rates
Everyone pays a different amount of money for their auto insurance. Do some research and call different companies to check rates. Saving on auto insurance can add up to be a huge monthly savings.
Oftentimes, it’s the little things that can help you save a lot of money. By incorporating some of these small steps for saving, your savings account will grow more than you imagined it could in no time at all.
|Written on 10/23/2013 by Rachel Jennings. Rachel Jennings writes all about personal finance. Her recent work is on the Top 10 Colleges for a Cheap Online Degree.|
Photo Credit: 401(K)2013