Do you often find yourself wondering why you are so broke all of the time? While many things relating to money are outside of our control, there is a lot that isn’t too.
It’s time to turn your finances around.
These techniques might sound like common sense for some. However, if you can incorporate a few of the 12 tips on this list into your life, you should be able to save a significant amount of money over the course of a lifetime. Help yourself to finally get ahead financially by following this simple advice.
1. Cancel the various subscriptions that you don’t use.
It’s shocking how many people pay for gym memberships that they never use. It’s also easy to get the biggest possible cable or Direct TV package and then realize that it’s way more than necessary. How many channels do you really watch?
Do you really need to pay for an additional Netflix subscription as well? It’s always a good idea to reevaluate your monthly subscriptions and cut out the ones that you don’t need anymore.
2. Get healthier for tremendous long-term savings on medical costs.
According to Fidelity, the average couple will need $300,000 set aside at age 65 in 2021 in order to cover long-term health care costs during retirement. That is an insane amount of money! Healthcare is so expensive and many people already have medical bills piling up well before they ever reach retirement age.
If you can find the time to get some daily exercise, eat clean, and maintain a healthy weight, it can lead to incredible savings on doctors’ bills. Not all medical issues are preventable, but there are plenty of things that we can still do to help ourselves!
3. Use credit cards responsibly and get 1 to 5% cash back on purchases.
Credit cards are one of those things that can get you in a lot of trouble if you mess it up. The key is to pay on time, every month, over and over again. Only use your credit card when you have the cash on hand.
Then sit back and collect your rewards money that most cards give out as a bonus for spending. If you have a card with good bonuses, the rewards will go a long way versus solely using cash to pay for everything.
4. Replace alcohol with another healthier alternative.
If you are a regular drinker, cutting back will help your wallet significantly. Going out to bars is not cheap and we often make bad financial decisions while intoxicated. Your health will thank you. Plus, you will be more productive the next day, allowing you to work more to regain any of the money that you did spend while out with friends.
5. Filter water from the tap instead of buying bottled water.
Get a Brita or invest in some sort of home filtering system. Over time, constantly buying bottled water can add up. It might not save you a fortune, but the average person spends over $100 per year on bottled water. For some, it’s much more than that. At the very least, it’s a good thing to keep track of.
6. Take a side job or start a hustle.
Find some ways to get a little bit of extra money coming in, even if it isn’t a lot. Working an extra afternoon shift on the weekend at a part-time job can pay the heating bill. Mowing a few lawns or selling some homemade crafts or baked goods can provide some additional pocket change.
7. Find hobbies that are cheap to do.
Skiing and snowboarding are out of the question due to the expensive equipment and lift ticket prices. Golfing is probably a no-go too. Something like hiking, on the other hand, is totally free. Really, almost all nature activities are surprisingly inexpensive.
8. Unsubscribe from promotional emails.
Marketing agencies in companies are great at their jobs. They wouldn’t bother sending you all those discount and promotional emails all of the time if they didn’t work. If you unsubscribe from all of them, you will never be tempted to jump on the next latest “offer”.
9. Cook at home and skip the fast food.
Drive-through restaurants might be convenient, but they aren’t really all that cheap, despite what the marketing wants you to believe. That value meal comes at the cost of your health and it’s actually not even really a good value. You can get higher-quality foods for much cheaper if you buy and cook for yourself at home. It just takes a little bit longer to prepare.
10. Save restaurants for special occasions.
The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that the average American household spends $3000 per year at restaurants. Once you factor in the bills, gas, tax, and tip, you are looking at a lot of money for each dish. The average commercially prepared meal costs $13. The average meal at home costs just $4.
11. Track your spending habits.
It’s easy to find yourself totally broke all of the time when you don’t track your spending. It’s simple math. You need to earn more than you spend if you want to stay ahead. At the very least, you have to earn as much as you spend. Going into debt to finance spending often causes big problems once you fall behind on payments.
12. Save as much as possible.
If it was so simple, everyone would be doing it. However, once you open your eyes to the various ways to save, you might find that more opportunities keep presenting themselves. Buy cheaper generic brands at stores. Skip the Starbucks coffee. Live slightly more frugally. You don’t need to become too much of a miser, but do be cognizant of your choices.
A really smart decision would be to set up an automatic savings plan every month. The banks also have options where they will take your leftover change from debit card purchases and put it into a savings account. We do what we can.
So many of us are just trying to make ends meet every month. Luckily, following these tips is likely to do great things for your finances. People in these sorts of financial situations know that every dollar counts. If you think these tips can help others, make sure to spread the word.
Check out a great budgeting video below.
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