Money makes the world go round. Although many people will say it’s not everything, having money certainly makes life a lot easier. Being stuck without cash can leave you in difficult situations where you have to make hard choices. You don’t want to wind up in a predicament thinking, “I need my car fixed but have no money.”
Choosing between putting yourself in debt or having a vehicle to get you where you need to go is a reality for many people who don’t have money saved up for emergencies. Lacking the funds for such instances can be a huge source of stress for many people.
Life is expensive, and it seems the cost of living only continues to rise. This can leave a lot of people struggling financially and having a hard time putting money away. But having a savings account is a necessity for life. Unexpected expenses arise when you least expect them, and not having the funds to cover them leaves you in a tight spot.
You don’t have to work an extremely well-paying job to put some money aside. Though many people may think they will be stuck living paycheck to paycheck with their current salary, it doesn’t have to be the case. There are money-saving habits you can start right now, on any income level.
#1 – Start Tracking Your Expenses
The first step to growing your money and getting on track with saving is to determine where it is going. Using your bank statements, you can make a list of what expenses you have each month. Keeping a detailed list of what you are paying for and how much you’re spending may surprise you.
There could be recurring charges coming out each month that you completely forgot you signed up for in the first place. Though they are likely not huge amounts of money, their monthly fee certainly adds up over time.
You might also find that you tend to spend on frivolous things that you don’t need. Though it’s okay to indulge here and there, if you notice yourself doing something like paying $5 a day for coffee, you may want to cut back if you’re hoping to start saving.
Tracking expenses is the best way to start better habits when it comes to your money. It allows you to see exactly where your money is going and find places you may be able to cut back on. After you’ve removed the unnecessary expenses, start putting that amount in your savings. You may be surprised at how quickly it adds up.
#2 – Set up an Auto Deposit for Your Paycheck
Having money go directly into a savings account is a great way to ensure you’re saving. Rather than moving money over physically, you can have a portion of your paycheck go right into savings without even missing it.
This is helpful because it’s more than likely if you have to transfer money physically, you probably won’t move as much, if any at all. Once you’ve seen it in your account, you’ll likely want it to spend rather than save. Having a direct deposit prevents you from seeing the money in the first place.
You don’t have to feel like half your paycheck should be going into your savings, either. Even a small amount each paycheck adds up over time. Without even realizing it, you may glance at your savings account and see a decent sum of money in it, with minimum effort on your part.
Having that extra cash will come in handy when unexpected costs arise, like a car that needs repairing. Instead of stressing about how you will cover the costs, you can rest easier knowing that your money-saving habits allowed you to pay your deductible without worry.
#3 – Check Your Automatic Payments
Automatic payments are great when you never want to miss a bill. But, those costs are coming out without you taking the time to really pay attention to them. Your bill could increase without your knowledge because it is automatically taken out.
Though it might be easy just to ignore them, looking into your payments and finding out if any charges have increased can be an excellent way to save you money. For example, you may find that your home or auto insurance premiums have suddenly risen, leaving you wondering why. A quick call to your agent could solve the issue and have you back down to your regular payment with just a few simple steps.
It can certainly seem like a hassle to look into these things, but the money you will save from doing so adds up over time and leaves you with some extra cash to save.
Photo by olia danilevich from Pexels
#4 – Look out for Sales and Discounts on Necessities
Even if you are cutting back on costs, there are some things you simply have to buy. Whether they are essential to your daily life or just something you have really wanted and waited for, some expenses are unavoidable.
One way to make them a little more reasonable is to look out for sales or deals on the items you need. For example, if you know you’ll need a new coffee maker soon, keep an eye out at multiple stores for a good sale.
It might take a little longer than just going out and buying the first coffee maker you see, but the money you’ll save will be worth the extra effort. And the money you save from the sale can be put into savings for later on down the road.
Start Saving and Stop Stressing
Money is a massive source of stress for many people. It can be challenging to save for instances like car repairs when everything in life seems so expensive. Although saving money isn’t always easy, it can be a huge relief to know you have a little tucked away for emergencies.
Using any or all of these money-saving tips can help you start saving right now. You may even find other savings options that work for you.
The possibilities are endless, but the outcome remains the same — extra money in your savings account. Though it seems like spending is often a lot easier than saving, the benefits of having extra money just in case will make all the effort worth it.