Finding means to save money so that you can have more for yourself has been a struggle for everyone. Whether we want to get out of debt, save for a PlayStation or for an early retirement, the struggle is real.
With the present economy, the unemployment rate, people have been bleeding everywhere because of it. Considering what we’re going through, saving money has become a necessity and I believe living a frugal life is better than a luxurious one.
I decided to come up with a list on how I save money every month and how you can to. Although this list won’t apply to everyone, but for those who it does, here are some tips.
You don’t need cable
This is by far the best go-to step for everyone if they need to save some money. The average cable bill in USA is almost $110, so if you’re watching shows there’s no need to spend so much when there are cheaper options available.
I shifted to Amazon Fire TV stick and subscribed to Netflix to watch the shows I liked.
You can save up to $70- 80$ per month by getting rid of cable
Cigarettes cost a lot
Now this may very well be a lot to digest but an average pack of cigarettes in California costs around $5.90. So if you smoke a pack a day, then that’s $5.90 for every day.
Quitting smoking wont only save money, but it will improve your quality of living.
Investing that amount of money in healthy fruits and vegetables
- You don’t need to go out and eat
Everybody likes eating out, but if you plan to save money, that needs to stop. It costs around 200$ for a family to go out and eat which is way expensive.
That doesn’t mean that you can’t go out to a good restaurant but if you plan your trips that’s going to be more cost effective. Let’s suppose if you go out 4 times a month to a restaurant, you can cut that down to half.
If you like good food, why don’t make your own? Get off from work early and do it yourself, there are tons of tutorials out there that can help you out. Plus, if you do cook something delicious at home, you can save some for tomorrow to.
It’s a win win. ‘
- Switch your wireless provider
Each month every data provider has something to offer, if you stick to the same service provider you’re missing out on BIG discounts.
- Negotiate on everything
Of course you’ve heard this one before, but many people think that they can negotiate on bigger purchases such as car shopping and renting a home. You can negotiate prices almost everywhere, even on retail stores.
Just be polite on every purchase, nobody likes a dreadful customer, be nice and it will work wonders for you.
- Style your own hair
While I honestly don’t know how to cut my own hair, I do trim my beard. By that I can save almost $20 every month.
Occasionally I do ask a friend to cut my hair, she works at a beauty parlor so she can do anything and everything a barber can do.
Poke around and see if some of your close friends are in this industry.
- Credit cards
If you’re not in debt, you can save money from a credit card by signing up for bonuses or cash backs. So if you are travelling you can avail a good amount of money by signing up for their offers.
However, if you have a credit card debt, it’s better to transfer debt to a lower interest credit card.
- Use the ATM once a month or on weekly basis
While credit cards are very easy to use, you can never track how much your spending in a month. You need to stop if you can’t keep count.
To save money, you need to have a plan. Draft what you will need for a month/week (Groceries etc.), take that much money out of the ATM and keep a little for yourself for emergencies. When your cash runs out, you will know that your spending needs a halt.
- Brew your coffee at home
Personally, this has been a big time saver for me. You don’t need to go to a coffeehouse for the perfect cup of tea when you can make your own.
“The average coffee costs around $3-$5 and that is going to cost your around $100 every month.”
If you really like Starbucks, why don’t you watch a tutorial on it and brew one for yourself at home.
- Always buy in bulk
If you see a good discount on food and non-perishable items, it’s always a great idea to buy in bulk. Planning ahead is the key, if you like frozen pizza, go to grocery stores which give a discount on it and buy more than a few packets.
Personally, buying in bulk helps me out a lot. Since I quit smoking and started vaping, I’ve seen plenty of vape shops offering a hefty discount if I buy E Juice in bulk.
- Wash your own car
If you don’t have time, make time. It’s better to wash your own car rather than paying $15-30 every time you go to a car wash.
- Brands don’t matter
Instead of grabbing expensive brands that you’re used to, it’s always better to check the price of other brands as well. Again, every brand offers something new every month/week, it’s not always about the popularity of a brand it’s the value that they’re providing.
- Reduce your energy costs
In order for you to cut down your electricity bills, use a programmable thermostat, turning your water heater down when you’re not using it and replacing your light bulbs are the most effective ways to save money every month.
On average, everyone has an 8 hour shift at work. Therefore, switching off your water heater before going to work can reduce your bills drastically.
- Switch your car
According to Edmunds.com, the average American spends about $479 a month on a new auto payment.
That’s a lot of money and with time if you decide to sell it, you’ll get pennies by the dollar for it. Opting for a less expensive, preferably buying a car can be beneficial to you now and in the future.
- Track your spending
If you know how much you’re spending, then you can have control over how you can spend your money. If you don’t pay attention to how you’re spending money, it becomes very difficult for one to save it.
There are plenty of applications that can keep track of your money, if you’re not into applications you can always follow “Hit the ATM” approach listed above.
However, treat yourself once a while when you get a bonus from work, you don’t have to live a terrible life.
- Every penny counts
If your grocery bill is $14.50, keep the change in a jar. Every penny counts. And this does not go for grocery bills only, you can do that for your rent, for bills and for gas.
You can trick yourself into saving an extra 20-30 bucks by doing so. Once you have enough money, transfer it to your savings account and in a couple of months you should be saving a lot of money.
- Automate your savings
By far the easiest thing that you can do to save money every month. You can easily set up an automatic transfer from checking to savings account each month.
- Gift cards are the best
Did you know that you can use gift cards for Netflix, amazon and Verizon? You’re going to use their services anyway, so better to pay the monthly recurring bills at a discounted rate by simply buying gift cards.
Gift cards are absolutely necessary if you want to save money all year long. Buying gift cards can help you out in the holiday season to, you will be spending less on gifts and avoiding a financial crisis.
- Swear Jar
While this may be unusual, keep a swear jar in your house. Put a quarter in every time you or your roommate curses.
- Save your raise
Getting a raise doesn’t mean more financial freedom, bank that money instead. You were already surviving with your pay, so keep the extra cash in the bank
If you work an extra shift, put that money in a jar and keep on piling them bills.
- Drink water instead of sodas
Keep a refillable bottle with yourself at all times, that way if you get thirsty you don’t need sodas to quench it.
A glass of water before a meal is not only good for the health but it will also help you feel fuller soon. That’s a win-win situation, you can lose weight and save money on food bills.
- Breakfast is important
If you skip breakfast, you might think that you’re saving money by doing that. That’s not the case, breakfast is cheap and it’s going to keep you full till lunch time.