If you’re one of the many people who live on a paycheck to paycheck basis, learning to save is necessary if you want to be able to meet emergency expenses as well as establish a savings plan for your family’s future financial needs and goals.
Below are some tips that can help you save…
- Take advantage of furthering your education in order to enhance your earning potential. Many employers offer this incentive. So, by all means, use it to your benefit.
- Stop buying books at the bookstore and cut out your magazine subscriptions by checking out books and magazines from your local library. If you really want to own a book on your shelf, consider buying used books online from places like Half.com.
- Do you really need a second car? If you don’t, you can save a bundle on insurance, gas and maintenance by sharing one vehicle for your transportation needs.
- Do not use your credit cards for items that you’ll soon consume such as food or household supplies. Instead, pay cash for these items and use your credit cards if you really have to for items that you’ll still be using after they’ve been paid off.
- Plan your menus for the week in advance so you’ll know exactly what you are spending and looking for when you go to the grocery store. This way, you can adjust your menus if you’re spending too much for certain foods. And, bring your lunch to work in a brown bag.
- Take advantage of coupons, but don’t use them to buy products you normally don’t use. I have to watch myself closely because I often find myself buying items I normally don’t use and do not even need just because I have a coupon burning a hole in my pocket. It may be a great deal, but it will make you overspend nevertheless.
- You can save on the wear and tear of your vehicle if you buy most of your parts like tires online. Just like grocery coupons, make sure that you buy only the things you actually need online or the savings you have reaped by not using your car will have no impact on your budget.
- Make sure you plan your shopping at times when items are priced lowest, such as after Christmas or the 4th of July. Also, there is no rule that says you can only buy Christmas gifts during the holidays. If you see a great gift at an unbelievable discount in August, go ahead and snatch that bad boy up. Your friend and your wallet will thank you no matter what time of year it is.
- Buy your clothes out of season. If you choose classic styling you can save up to 50% on your clothing by doing so.
- If you’re faced with a major appliance repair, it might be best to buy a new appliance if the cost of the repair is going to be outrageous.
A few bonus tips…
- Pay off a loan and continue paying the loan amount to yourself in order to get into the habit of saving. You’re already used to paying the loan amount so paying the expenditure to yourself each month should not present too great of hardship.
- Also, you can reduce your expenses and see where you can save more by stockpiling your receipts on a weekly basis. This is a great way to cut out items that you really don’t need and make provisions to save for things that are far more important.
After following the above tips, if you can get in the habit of saving money every month for emergency expenditures and specific goals such as a vacation or the purchase of a major appliance, you will indeed be a seasoned veteran saver. Likewise, being able to reap these extra savings for long-term financial goals, such as retirement, should firmly establish you as a great saver.