Handling a low income can be a tough challenge. The first piece of advice would be to live on cash only. If your income is low, you can’t afford credit cards. You have to get used to living on what you have and not using credit cards to pay your mandatory expenses.
Start by determining what expenses have to be paid, no ifs and ands about it. Those would include rent or mortgage, power, phone, and transportation to get to work. After that you need your groceries and any extras. Determine what your income is and what your mandatory expenses. Determine what the difference. What ever is left over divide that by 4 ( 4 weeks in a month) and determine how much you can have for your groceries and extras. Leave all other money in the bank and take the determined amount out of the bank each week. If you do that, you should be able to write out a check for each of the mandatory expenses with out going over budget.
Now, when it comes to a low income, you need to save in a few places. Start by always checking the second hand shops for items before going to the department stores. Use coupons in the grocery store but only for items you would normally buy. Don’t buy an item you have a coupon for just because you have a coupon or you will be buying things you really don’t need. Also, try experimenting with brand names. A lot of times a manufacturing company makes a product for a couple of different companies but all they do is change the label. You could potentially be getting a real good name of peanut butter in a no-name labeled jar. Coming from experience, there are some really good quality no-name products out there that you would never taste the difference. You can save money on your hydro bill by making sure that the lights are off when not needed, use cold water to wash with (it does just as good a job as hot), and grab a sweater or a blanket to curl up to at night when you are watching television if it gets cold.
If there is any area you can save a few cents, it will give you just a little bit extra. The bit you save by cutting costs could maybe allow you to put $50 per month into a savings account. After a year or even more, that $50 per month adds up. You can then reward yourself for that hard work.