If you currently don’t have a budget set up that allows you to save a fixed amount of money each month, that doesn’t mean you still can’t work on building your savings account. There are some simple ways to cut down on expenses and save money, and even saving just a little bit here and there can go a long way:
Make a shopping list and stick to it
Whether you’re going to the mall or heading to the grocery store, it’s important to always make a list beforehand and stick to it. When you arrive wherever you’re shopping, go straight to what you went there for, and leave right away. Going shopping without a plan can cause you to spend far more money than you really intended on spending. Bringing just a small amount of cash with you is another thing you can do to prevent overspending, and enough to cover what you know you need to buy. Leave debit and credit cards at home in order to avoid any impulse purchases.
Cut down on your energy usage
Saving money can be easier by lowering your monthly utility bills. Conserve energy by turning off lights whenever you leave a room, or unplugging electronics that aren’t in use. There are also a lot of different ways you can cut down on heating and cooling costs, which is what can really drive up your monthly utility bills. For instance, making sure your home is properly insulated can help regulate your home temperature faster, and can keep cold or hot air from coming inside. You may also want to consider investing in some energy efficient appliances, if you haven’t already. The initial investment may be expensive, but you’ll recoup the savings in no time through lower electricity bills. If upgrading your appliances isn’t an option at this time, even some small upgrades can go a long way. For example, you could swap out older light bulbs for LED light bulbs.
Eliminate what you really don’t need
Take a look at your finances and see what you’re paying for every month—there may be some things you can downgrade, or even do without completely. That gym membership you forgot about, that cable television subscription that you hardly use, or all that extra data on your cell phone plan that you never come close to using up—these are just some of the many things you may want to consider canceling. There are also a lot of free alternatives to costly monthly expenses that you may want to look into. For example, instead of paying for a gym membership, you can easily take your workouts outside at no cost.
Cut out the little things
Those restaurant and fast food lunches during your afternoon break at work? Bring your lunch with you to work everyday, or at least a couple times a week. That $5.00 latte at the coffee shop down the street? Stop doing it and make your own coffee at home for just a fraction of the cost. Even if you’re just saving a few bucks here and there, remember that it all adds up.
Purchase the right items in bulk
Spending a little more upfront on bulk purchases—for the right items—will not only allow you to avoid extra trips to the store, but it will also help you save a lot of money. Whether you’re buying in bulk when there’s a good sale, or you have a membership to a wholesale club, stocking up on essentials (think along the lines of toilet paper and trash bags) can be an easy way to save money.
Are you receiving long-term payments from a structured settlement or annuity? If you need money sooner, Peachtree Financial Solutions may be able to help. Contact us today to learn more about selling some or all of your future payments for a lump sum of cash.
Nothing above is meant to provide financial, legal, or tax advice. You should meet with appropriate professionals for such services.