We all made lots of resolutions for 2014 & I am sure most of us made this one: SAVE MONEY (or something along those lines). But have you set a fixed plan on how to achieve this goal? I’m going to be quite honest, this is one of my resolutions as well, but it was only this weekend that I drew up a plan on how to make this happen & I thought it would be a good idea to share it with you girls to help you out with this resolution.
- Tip #1: Set a budget & stick to it! First, make a list of all the fixed expenses you make on a monthly basis: rent, electricity, TV, internet, car, insurance, cell, etc. Then, evaluate how much is left over. Once you have this figured out, set a budget for food, going out, clothes, etc. Withdrawal the cash out of your account, no more, no less. This way, you are forcing yourself to use only the money you have set aside, and once you have reached your budget, you will need to forgo future shopping or going out. When you see your money physically pulled out of your wallet, you might think twice before spending it. Key consideration: leave your credit card at home!
- Tip #2: Help yourself! Another way to help you save money is to buy yourself gift card. This way, you can buy what you want, guilt free, and still remain within your limits. Obviously, be careful to not purchase for more than what is on the gift card – best to buy less than your maximum, so that you can carry forward the balance to next month :) In addition, look for deals, discounts & sales instead of regular prices.
- Tip #3: Shop around! Whether it be a grocery store, a pharmacy or a dry cleaner, you should shop around for the best deals. Different brands & locations have different prices. The best way to do this without wasting time is to go grocery shopping or pick up medicine or body care products at different places each time to discover the prices of the items you always purchase and determine which place rolls up the lowest bill.
- Tip #4: Keep receipts! In order to keep track of what you spend, the best thing is to write down each expense & keep a receipt. Once you are near your budget, evaluate what other plans you have for the month & set aside the rest of the money for those events. Until then, no spending.
- Tip#5: Pay debts & put money aside! If you have debts on which you pay high levels of interest, focus on getting rid of those 1st (especially credit cards). As interest accumulates, your debts multiply. Once you have cleared those, you can start putting a set amount aside per month. Start with a small amount & it will motivate you to put aside more.
Most importantly: stay motivated & don’t give up! Your future self will thank you! ;)