6 New Year’s Resolutions for Saving Money
Stressing over money can be one of life’s most demanding responsibilities. And we’ve all been there. Getting caught in a never-ending cycle of spending is easy. Whether it’s paying bills, rent, food and other necessities or simply having a decent social life; the average person is notorious for spending outside their means.
It doesn’t matter if you’re a millionaire or simply just wanting to stop spending your entire pay cheque when you get it, it’s possible for anyone to turn their financial life around. And once you take the first steps in the right direction, it’s amazing how those small changes to your routine can make a big impact to spending habits. If your New Year’s resolution is to save money (and let’s face it, who hasn’t put that on the to-do list!), here’s a few tips to get you started.
1. Plan Your Meals
It’s estimated that the average Australian spends almost $900 a year on takeaway food and beverages during work hours. And whilst food is certainly a necessity, it makes you wonder how much you can save just by getting prepared. One of the easiest budget cuts you can make is to make a goal to cook at home more and plan your meals for the week.
Shop smart by looking for good deals, budget packs or buy in bulk and freeze. By committing an hour or two each week to organise meals in advance, it’s amazing how much you can save. Cook in substance and freeze leftovers for lunches or meals the following week. Adding a few low-cost meals to the shopping list will help too, like meaty soups and pasta. You don’t have to completely miss out on work lunches either; instead opt to buy lunch and coffee once a week as a treat and bring pre-made lunches and snacks for the remaining days. Switch that morning coffee run for a coffee at work or invest in a coffee machine if you do have a habit of spending a fortune on that caffeine fix.
2. Make a 3 Year Financial Plan
Most of us think on a pay check to pay check basis, but looking into the future and planning for it can get you sorted financially smarter. Where do you want to be in three years’ time money-wise? Maybe you’re paying off a mortgage or perhaps you want to put a deposit down on a house by then, pay off that student loan or credit card debt.
Be realistic about how much money you can put aside weekly to make that goal happen. How much do you need to achieve the three year plan? What habits are you prepared to drop or cut back on to get there?
3. Follow the 50/20/30 Rule
The non-negotiable essentials; rent, mortgage payments, food shopping, school fees, debt and utilities etc should always be your number one priority when that pay check rolls in. Allocate 50 percent of your salary to these necessities before you start any other spending spree.
Once that’s out of the way, put 20 percent of your pay into your future goals. Whether they be saving for a house, going on that overseas trip, retirement plan or investment opportunities. Once all those priorities out the way, you have 30 percent to spend on whatever your heart desires! Think social life, spending sprees, dinner dates, hobbies and more. Seems easy enough, right?
4. Cut Down on Bad Habits
Bad habits like smoking, constant drinking, buying non-essentials, caffeine addictions and other bits and pieces will eat into your salary super quick – so get rid of what you can! Whilst we are always going to have those few thing we refuse to give up, you need to be realistic about reaching those financial goes. What are you prepared to cut out and what ‘bad habits’ do you want to keep?
Make a list of the bad habits that are eating away your earnings. Cut it in half, and half that again. You don’t want to miss out on everything, because you won’t stick to those financial goals and it’s more than ok to reward yourself. Just be smart about what needs to go and what can stay.
5. Discover DIY and Repurposing
Getting those creative juices flowing can be a big money saver. You don’t need to be an overly crafty person to make it happen either. Armed with tools like Pinterest, it’s possible to cut down significantly on costs with DIY projects and recycling or repurposing unused items – turning junk into treasure is easier than you think. Not only will you be doing your bit for the environment, but it’ll save you having to buy things for the house when you can create your own pieces (plus, it’s fun!).
6. Talk Money With Your Partner
Keeping your partner and family in the loop about your financial goals and spending habits is important. Not only do you need to be honest with yourself, but involving your partner will ensure there’s support along the way. Talking money with your partner will keep you both on the same page with finances, shared money goals and plans. Having that talk can be hard - especially if you’re over spending, but setting time aside to chat about where you’re both at can make a huge impact.
If all else fails, don’t be afraid to ask for help from a money doctor professional! Finance advisors can help to keep things in check and create a budget plan to work with your individual needs and salary. Small cash loans can assist in reaching those financial goals too, when used properly. Contact Ferratum today to see how we can help you.