If you find yourself just scraping by and would love to have a little extra in your back pocket each pay day, consider these three money saving tips.
1. TAKE AN HONEST LOOK AT YOUR EXPENSES
Sit down and carefully review your bank accounts over the past two to three months. This will help you get a really clear idea of what your expenses are week to week. Don’t forget to factor in cash purchases too – it might be your daily coffee or that weekly quick-sandwich-from-the-shop lunch.
After reviewing, work out where you could make some savings. Ask yourself whether you really need to get takeaway for dinner twice a week, or whether it’s essential you upgrade your wardrobe each season. The goal here is to cut back a little. It may mean a few compromises on the quality of your life in the short term, but it’s all for long term gain.
Next, evaluate your bills. This will take some time to do, but the payoff is worth it. Cover all bases such as insurance policies, utilities (if you can choose your own), mobile plans, internet, gym subscription, streaming services etc.
Contact each provider to see if you can get a better deal. It might be by bundling services together, or asking them to match a competitor’s price. Don’t be afraid to bargain as most companies have some room to move on price if it means keeping your business.
2. START A SAVINGS HABIT
Set up a savings account (if you don’t have one already) with a good interest rate. Then schedule an automatic transfer each pay day into this account. You can start with a small amount if that’s easier for you. The main thing is to form the habit of savings. Soon you will hardly notice the difference in your pay, and you can then increase the amount you transfer each week/fortnight/month.
3. DITCH THE CREDIT CARD
If you have a credit card, consider closing it. Only spending what you have – rather than relying on credit – is not only a great way to get out of debt, but also put you on the fast-track to increasing your savings.