Saving is the big scary thing we all know we should do but is hard to actually achieve, especially when you are in school or have kids. In fact, saving may not even be something that sounds feasible to you.
Don’t be intimidated, saving begins like most things; starting small and working you’re way up. Saving does not always mean setting giant portions of your paycheck aside. While saving in this capacity is great if you have the ability, most early adults are not in a place to contribute to their savings in this manner.
Fortunately, there are many practical ways you can apply saving to your daily routines.
Get Organized. Organization is a great place to begin. Where is your money going? Do you have a set yearly and monthly budget? I would encourage you to make a budget spreadsheet of all of your bills so you can see your expenses and start from there.
After assessing your current money flow, you may be surprised. Perhaps you are still paying for a subscription you no longer use and forgot about, or maybe you are shocked to discover how much you are spending eating out.
Now you can begin planning!
Plan weekly meals. Start off the week making a grocery list and deciding what you will eat for breakfast, lunch, dinner, and any snacks. Remember to include vegetables and fruits for the week in addition to your ingredients.
Planning and cooking meals for the week will help you not throw away spoiled meat or vegetables. It also sets you up for eating at home rather then eating meals out. It is also much healthier. Furthermore, you eliminate buying more sweets or snacks during the week if you are not visiting the store again. This of course, cuts costs and is healthier.
Pack leftovers for lunch. Consider cooking a couple extra servings of whatever you are making and pack it for lunch the next day or have it again for dinner. (Remember to plan for this when you are making your grocery list). This tip will save you time and energy as well as lower your electric bill. It also leaves you no excuse to buy fast food at lunch at work or school.
Use cloth instead of paper. Paper towels are expensive; a pack of 6 roles can be as much as $5! You can easily buy kitchen towels for around $3 and then you can use them for years. While paper towels may seem more convenient, cloth cleans up spills and dirty counters just as easily. It is true you have to take an extra step to wash your cloth towels, however it would take no effort to throw the kitchen towels in with the load with the bath towels every week.
Coins are money too. Some people overlook spare change because of its low value, but the key to saving is to think in terms of accumulative worth. Start a change jar and drop in coins every time they collect in your wallet. By the time you fill up a mason jar you will be surprised how much you have saved. Quarters are also great to collect for doing your laundry or washing your car.
Plan your trips. Are you constantly driving to the opposite end of town? Begin planning your trips by completing all of your errands on one side of town at the same time. If you go after work, you may have to look up store hours to plan which stores to visit first, before they close. This system will save you time, money, and gas.
Incase you are still not sold on the whole saving idea, these suggestions are also promoting green, environment friendly, living. Start saving money today and be part of the change!