Everyone has financial goals whether they realize it or not. That new home, new car or even that obscenely expensive pair of shoes are all things that fall under financial goals. The problem is that spending is easy but when it comes to savings it’s not so easy. What if there were simple ways that you could save money?
Simple ways to save money are just that; simple. Everyone likes to save money some people even like to save so much they become stingy. There are simple ways to save money that won’t cause you to feel deprived. It is more a matter of adjusting slowly and changing a few habits that after a while you won’t even miss. Opening a savings account is one of the easiest ways not to touch the money you save, especially if they require a minimum balance to stay open.
You live on a budget whether you know it or not; after all you can’t really spend more than you make. Take the amount you spend on bills and purchases each month and list them. You’ll likely see a number of areas that you can spend less money. Go through each item one by one to determine if you can live without it even for a little while. Eliminating some of these items will make more room in your budget for other items that you might find you need more.
-Break A Dollar-
When shopping trips are taken there is a tendency to dig out the exact change to avoid breaking that dollar. Some people just don’t like to carry change around with them so they try to avoid it. Stop digging for change, break the dollar and empty your pockets into a jar at night.
You’ll be surprised at how much you have when the jar becomes full especially if you’re in the habit of buying little items here and there while you’re out. Once the jar is full you can either take the time to roll the change or go to one of those machines that give you paper bills for it although most charge a few. Either way take what you have manage to accumulate and deposit in your savings account.
-Note of Warning-
When you use a machine in the store to convert change to dollars most will charge a few causing you to lose a couple dollars worth of your hard earned savings. There is now the option to cash in change for gift cards at some of these machines which allows you to use the money for a purchase at participating retailers. This option works if you have been saving some of the money for a purchase.
-Recycling and Re-Using-
Whenever you do something like recycling take that money and put it aside. It’s money you wouldn’t have normally had and you already spent it on the cost of whatever was in the recyclable containers you just got rid of. It’s like a getting a partial refund long after the fact. What about those things you don’t recycle but don’t use any more?
Look around the house and find all those items you don’t use any more and take a closer look at the things you usually throw away. Can you find another use for them? What about things you usually throw away can you use them in place of something you would normally buy? Then do it and you won’t spend money to buy thing you can make out of something else.
Candles are used in many homes and after a while they add up. Try purchasing a pack of wicks and take all those old candles you were thinking of throwing away and melt them down to make new candles instead. You’ll get more candles for less when you do this and they can be anyway you would like.
-Pay yourself first-
We all get paid for the work we do but few of us remember to pay ourselves while we write out the checks for the monthly bills. Having an amount such as $50 or even $5 a pay day designated as saving before anything else is done assures that you are savings. Some employers offer automatic deductions to savings or retirement funds. When you pay the bills for the month sometimes things are lower than you expected them to be. In these cases take the amount that is left and transfer it to a savings account to earn you interest on your money.
-Minimize your life-
Cut out those extras that you don’t use. Does anyone really need two hundred television channels? Cut down on your cable package. Want to save even more? Then cut out cable all together. You can use that money for something else.
Do you have a television set in every room? Is it really necessary? By getting rid of just one of those sets you can reduce your light bill because that’s one less thing to use electricity. Selling the set will give you money you wouldn’t have had so it can be saved.
-Discover Generic Brands-
Do you have to have name brand everything? Take a look at the labels of what you normally buy and compare them to the store brands. Most of them will be nearly identical. If you must buy a name brand try and wait until it is on sale and then add a coupon to the savings.
-Interest Bearing Checking Accounts-
Check with your bank. Some banks now offer interest bearing checking accounts at no extra cost to you. Investigate the options available to you. If this is right for you then simply transfer the interest into savings so it won’t be spent. The interest will then earn you some interest.
-Stay Home More Often-
Plan family activities that can be done at home whenever possible to save on the travel expenses associated with going out. Renting or even buying a movie to watch over and over is still cheaper than going to the theater to watch one. Popping your own popcorn not only saves money its fun too!
-Learn to Pack Better-
When you go on an outing or on a vacation packing “correctly” can save you a small fortune. Take the things that you use on a daily basis with you to avoid having to purchase them. Even a trip into town can be packed for by keeping a portable cooler handy. Portable coolers allow you to take drinks and snacks for the kids along and will prevent buying individual candy bars, soda and other food items. When you know you’re going to be gone through a meal pack one and stop to have a picnic at lunch time instead of hitting the local drive through window.
-Go outdoors more often-
Send the kids outside and watch the savings add up. When the weather permits send the kids outside to play instead of sitting them in front of the television set. Let them learn to imagine and it will save you a small fortune on the latest gadgets. When they get out of the house you automatically have more things off in your home which will reduce the amount spent on electricity each month.
-Change your Habits-
Things like makeup cost us money. Do you where make up every day whether you’re going somewhere or not? The skin needs to breath every once and a while; not only that reducing the amount of times you wear make-up increase the amount of time between purchases.Drinking coffee at home just one morning a week will add up to incredible savings just like packing a lunch for work once a week will.
-See Saving Money is Simple-
These are just a few simple ideas to save money without feeling the pain of doing without your basic needs in order to do so. When you make adjustments slowly they become automatic faster than if you try to force yourself to change a lifetime of spending habits all at once.