There's always something to buy with extra cash, which makes accumulating money one of the hardest personal finance tasks. It's impossible to meet your financial goals, however, without mastering the disciplined art of saving.
That doesn't mean saving up money has to be a painful process. You can set aside money and still maintain a comfortable lifestyle by cutting down on waste and by handling your funds wisely.
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1. Set up a Direct Deposit for Savings
Setting up a direct deposit to a savings account is one of the easiest ways to save. This method ensures that you save before you spend, rather than saving what's left over after your earnings go towards shopping entertainment, or other purchases. This strategy is commonly called "paying yourself first."
Visit your bank or use online banking to set up a direct deposit within minutes. You can schedule an automatic deduction from your monthly paycheck and direct the money to another account. Leave yourself enough money for monthly living expenses and spending within your budget.
Automating your savings prioritizes them. You won't forget to deposit savings manually and you can watch a portion of your earning accumulate.
2. Get Cash Back
You can also save money effortlessly by getting cash back from your credit cards. This method of saving is perfect for individuals with good credit scores or who make most of their purchases on credit cards. Many credit card cash-back deals give approximately 5% cash-back on spending.
You don't need to go out of your way to save. Simply make sure that you use the cards as required, which includes paying all bills on time.
3. Do Your Shopping Online
Instead of wasting money on impulse purchases at grocery stores and retail outlets, consider shopping online. Some online retailers offer their online shoppers special discounts, promo codes, or coupons, and some purchases come with free delivery.
You could end up saving on multiple expenses when you shop online, considering that it can also save fuel and time.
4. Avoid Impulse Buying at All Costs
Money can easily go to waste when you purchase items that you hadn't planned for, no matter how cheap they are. It's simple: stick to your shopping list and watch your saving grow monthly.
Ideally, you should give yourself at least 24 hours before making a purchase. During the waiting period, reflect on whether the item or service will be worthwhile. In most cases, impulse buying can be curbed when you give yourself time to think, which is good news for your savings account.
5. Use Your Cards and Debt Facilities Wisely
Follow the rules when it comes to credit and debit cards to save you money and to stay out of debt. Minimize interest charges on your credit cards by never using your cards past their limit. Pay off all of your card debt in full at the end of every month.
Additionally, avoid using your overdraft facilities, which are expensive and preventable. By using your cards wisely, you'll save more without adopting strict saving regimes.
6. Ditch the Credit Cards if Needed
You might find that you can save more money without your credit card. If you're prone to overspending, considering cutting yourself off from your plastics.
Leave cards at home when you don't need them, and stop using credit cards if you're prone to spending more than you have. You and your credit score are better off living within your means than living on debt.
7. Cut Down on Unnecessary Subscriptions and Hobbies
You may not realize that your hobbies and entertainment are costing you a fortune. Make a list of your hobby and entertainment expenses, and see if you can find cost-effective alternatives.
Have season passes to watch a professional sports team? Watching some games at home or at a sports bar could reduce spending. If you don't really need cable, consider transitioning to Netflix.
Saving money doesn't have to be a constant struggle. When you get in the habit of implementing small saving strategies, accumulating money will seem effortless.