7 Easy Ways To Save Money
Did you know that only 30% of Americans have a savings plan? With an eye-opening statistic like that, it's clear that Americans need more strategies to help them save. To help you build your savings, we have 7 small (and easy) ways that you can start saving more today:
1. Limit Eating Out
Eating out can be very costly. In fact, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics the average American household spends close to $3,000 a year eating out. This number may scare you, but this doesn't mean that you need to stop eating out altogether. Instead, take a close look at how much you are spending per month on dining out and see if you can cut back at all. If you see how you can limit your eating out, make a fun meal at home to save some extra money instead of going out to eat.
2. Look For Deals And Coupons
Restaurants, just like grocery and retail stores, offer coupons that can help you save some extra cash. If you can't find a coupon for what you are looking for make sure to ask if there are any special discounts for seniors, students, teachers, or military members. Remember, it never hurts to ask!
3. Cancel Memberships You Don't Use
Do you have a gym membership that you don't use? Do you have both a Netflix and a Hulu account but only use one of them? Do you have a Fabletics membership that is going to waste? Ongoing memberships can be very costly, especially if you aren't even using them and getting to enjoy the benefits of them. Take a look at your current memberships and see if there is anywhere that you could cut back. Maybe you could get rid of your Netflix membership but keep your Hulu membership and save the difference. If you cancel a membership and decide you can't live without it, you can always subscribe again (if it fits into your budget).
4. Buy Used And Save The Difference
From used cars to used clothes, you can save a lot from not buying the newest and latest. If you do choose to buy used, make sure to set aside the difference and save it. This will make buying used all the more worth it if you can see the financial rewards of not buying new things. It's also a good habit to not think that you always need to have the latest and newest things.
5. Use The 10-Second Rule
If you're considering making an impulse purchase, stop for 10 seconds and ask yourself if you truly need the item. If it's an item that you don't actually need then ask yourself if it will really bring you that much joy or if you would rather have the extra money to save. If after 10 seconds you are still questioning the purchase, then go home and wait for 24 hours. After 24 hours if you are still thinking about the item, then go get it (as long as it fits into your budget of course)! You'll be thankful that you took a step back and thought about the purchase carefully.
6. Save Your Change
Instead of losing your loose change, put it into a jar or a dish everytime you accumulate enough to empty your wallet. Once your jar or dish is full, take it to your local credit union and put the money into your savings account. You would be surprised how much extra money you can save just by keeping track of your loose change. Collecting up your loose coins is an easy (and fun) way to save more. If you have kids, you can also get them involved and make it a family coin jar to teach them the value of saving.
7. Make Coffee At Home
Everyone loves treating themselves to a good cup of coffee from a coffee shop from time to time, but try to limit the amount that you are buying coffee out. Instead, tell yourself that you can make coffee at home half of the time and pick it up on the go the other half of the time. If picking up a cup of coffee is your daily treat, then consider looking at the menu and getting a classic coffee versus a latte that can cost up to $5. If you are okay with getting the cheaper coffee, then save the difference on what you would have spent getting the more expensive coffee.
These 7 strategies are a great place to start saving extra money, however, it's crucial that you have a budget in place as well. Without a budget, you won't have guidelines to follow or financial goals to keep in mind whenever you are making purchases. Creating a budget is the secret to financial security.