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Saving money is an important part of your overall financial plan. It helps you save for emergencies, and also gives you a little wiggle room when you want to treat yourself. But saving money can sometimes be challenging. There are social pressures to spend and the expenses of daily living can easily distract some of us from our higher-level goals. If you’ve ever struggled with how to save money, consider these tips to help you incorporate saving into your regular financial routine.
Put It in Your Budget Be accountable with your money. A good goal is to save at least 10% of every paycheck. But even $20 or $50 a month can go a long way to helping you save. Set reasonable goals that work for you and be consistent. Try to take care of your savings first — as soon as you get your paycheck. When you deposit that check or see the direct deposit in your account, immediately move a small amount of it to your savings account. You can even set an automatic transfer so you don’t have to lift a finger. Some savings accounts even allow you to name them with a specific goal in mind. So, if you want to save a little bit every month toward, for example, holiday spending, you can do just that. Those personalized details often can help you visualize your goals better and stay on track.
Lower Your Bills One of the best ways to save extra money without making sacrifices is to lower the bills that you can control. Many companies are willing to work with you because they don’t want to lose you as a loyal customer. The first step is to simply call your cable company or your car insurance company and just ask if they would consider lowering your bill because you’ve been a loyal customer. If that doesn’t work, you can call competitors to get an estimate on what they would charge for your services. Get their estimates and quotes in writing and then send them to your current company and ask them to beat it. If they don’t, you can leave your current company and go with a competitor. You’d be surprised at the discounts you can get if a company is running any specials or holiday deals. You can get discounts on everything from oil changes to zoo memberships, just by asking.
Save Your Change If you use cash, saving your change is an easy way to save a few dollars every month. Once your piggy bank is full, you can take it to a financial institution or a coin machine. You might be able to put the money into your savings account or opt for a gift card or cash. This is a very simple way to save, and you can even get your whole family involved in the process.
Make sure you know why you want to save money and what you’ll do when you have it saved, whether it’s for a vacation, holiday gifts, or to pay down debt. Keep your objective in mind. Start small if you have to. Like most habits, the more you make saving a part of your everyday life, the easier it will become. The best part is that once you have money saved and see your accounts grow, you’ll see how great it feels. Many people report having anxiety and stress about money, but a full savings account can ease your worries by letting you know that you have money saved for a rainy day.
Open a Savings Account Today If you don’t have a savings account, open one today. If you want to save for a specific goal, try a high yield savings account that has a specific goal listed on it. Consistently add to it by setting up automatic transfers and remember why you started. All of these steps will help you get better at saving and move toward financial well-being.