How to spend less and save more
With the pandemic going on much longer than most of us anticipated, it is time to get creative about saving money. There is now a greater need to ensure every dollar is spent wisely, so you can adequately save.
Here are some evergreen money-saving tips to help you spend less and save more.
1. Draw up a budget
As the popular saying goes, “those who fail to plan plans to fail”. Your budget does not have to be some fancy excel spreadsheet or a five-page document – just a simple plan for how you intend to save, spend, and invest your money.
2. Have an emergency fund
Always have some money set aside for a rainy day. No matter how little your income, saving a fraction of it will help you build up a tidy sum over time. The pandemic has created a lot of instability in the economy, making it much more important for everyone to save for emergencies.
3. Track your spending
Money has a mysterious way of going with the wind if you don’t watch it. Keep your eyes on your money by keeping a record of every cent you spend. This will help you stay in control of your expenses and lead to less wasteful spending.
4. Do not borrow – if you can
As much as possible, stay away from accumulating debts. Spend within your limit and do not pile up credit card debts. Not only will this help you sleep better at night, but it will also help you avoid potential financial pitfalls in the future.
5. Review your subscriptions
These include payments like your phone plans, cable service, gym memberships, and every other monthly or yearly subscription you pay for. Switch to cheaper alternatives for the must-haves and cancel the subscriptions of the ones you don’t need to have.
6. Reduce your utility bills
Yes, you need water, electricity, and/or gas in your home – but you do not necessarily need to spend as much on them as you currently do. Using less electricity, gas, and water is not only good for your pocket but also good for the earth.
7. Target sales, promos, and special offers
Why buy something now, when you can buy it for half price on Black Friday? If you do not need to have an item right now, you could wait for holidays or other special occasions to buy it at a discounted rate.
8. Cook your own food
We all know eating out is expensive. And so is ordering food from restaurants to be delivered to you at home. No matter how tasty the food is, the cumulation of over-priced meals, service charges, tax, delivery fees, and other sometimes hidden charges are not appetizing to your wallet.
9. Sell off your old or extra stuff
Having stuff around the house that you don’t use is like have money floating around you. Sell, sell, sell. You could organize a garage sale right in front of your house, or post the items on websites like Kijiji, Facebook marketplace, and so on.
10. Become a DIY master
Doing things yourself will save you a whole lot of money. Rather than go pay to get some simple tasks done, you could watch some YouTube videos to learn from experts, then do it yourself – remember to do so safely of course.
With these ten money-saving tips, you could find yourself saving anything between 10% to 60% of your income – depending on how far off your spending habits were. If you have any other money-saving tips, please drop them in the comments section below.