Life always seems to be getting more expensive and saving up for anything can seem like a daunting task when every cent counts. Here are my tips on how to save money – whether you’re saving for a big splurge or a rainy day.
I normally talk about all the different ways there are to make money, and while there are plenty, it’s just as important to think about what you’re going to do with that money once you get it.
Not to get preachy here, but:
One of the benefits of making side-cash is that it’s easier to save that money than your regular income because it’s cash that wouldn’t have been in your pocket anyway.
Resist the urge of overspending and follow some of these savings tips. Start saving now and you too can have more than a gum wrapper and some old gift cards in your wallet when the inevitable end of the month rolls around.
The Best Way To Save Money
I could give dozens of small tips and tricks about saving money but that won’t matter to someone who isn’t committed to following them.
A big element of saving money is having the right mindset.
Truly, the best way to save money is to simply make a mind-shift towards a more frugal way of living. That’s half the battle won.
Of course, knowing how to save money is the other half. In all my research, I’ve found that the best way to save money is through a savings account.
Why choose a savings account?
It yields lower interest than some other methods like money market funds and high-yield bank accounts, but it’s also the lowest-risk option.
Money in a savings account (in the US at least) is also insured up to a certain amount by the FDIC, making it a very safe and secure method of putting away your hard-earned income.
Plus, savings accounts typically don’t allow the money to be drawn through normal methods like check-writing or they limit the number of times per month you can withdraw, which can result in less spur of the moment spending.
Top Ways to Save Money in 2019
I went digging and found some general tips as well as more in-depth methods of saving money through a savings account.
5 General Savings Tricks
1. Establish a Budget
Your budget is your first line of defense against spending what you don’t have, but it’s also the only way you’re going to know how much you can save.
You can either take pen to paper or go the digital route (there are plenty of nice budgeting apps out there) and start taking all of your expenses into account. It’s probably best to save up all your receipts for the first month to see what your spending habits are like and then set up a fixed budget from there.
Make sure there’s a savings account on the debits side of your list.
2. Save Where You Can
One of the most common benefits of setting up a budget is that it allows you to see where you can cut expenses and save more.
There are almost always places where we can scrimp a little so we can put the difference into a savings account.
3. Plan Ahead
Planning ahead is the easiest way to save money.
Say you’re going to a festival or planning a trip; the only way to know you’re not going to overspend is to plan your way through it. Things like meals, travel expenses, and buying souvenirs can all be planned ahead.
On a side note: If you’re serious about saving up for your next vacation then check out my guide on the top 20 ways to save money for your next vacation – without the stress!
4. Set Up Saving Goals
Having a goal to work towards assures success more often than not when it comes to saving money.
Short-term goals are better than long-term ones because it feels easier to aim for $50 a week, for instance, than trying to save $1000 in 3 months.
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5. Find Those Discounts
There are plenty of ways to spend less and save money. Finding discounts is one of the most common ways to do just that.
Newspapers, some blogs, and supermarket fliers usually have discounts or coupons and it’s easy to stay up to date. In fact, plenty of people only buy certain stuff when they’re on discount.
Also, look out for seasonal discounts on clothes and events like Cyber Monday for big-ticket items like electronics.
Then put the difference between the item’s original price and discounted price into your savings account.
4 Easy To Follow Ways to Save Money
1. Set Up an Automatic Savings Plan
Many banks or employers allow you to auto set a portion of each paycheck to go into a retirement account or savings account.
You can discuss this with either your HR person at work or with your bank.
This way, the saving is done automatically for you every time you get a paycheck. What makes this so easy is that, after a while, you don’t even see that money as spendable income anymore since it automatically goes into your savings account.
2. Save Any Unexpected Gains
Whether it’s a present from a relative, tax returns, or a bonus at work, getting money unexpectedly is always a nice surprise.
Sometimes, that cash comes in handy for things we really need, but usually, most people just end up spending the cash because it’s there. Instead, opt to put that windfall into a savings account so you can boost your savings with cash you wouldn’t otherwise have had.
3. Throw Away Your Loose Change… Into Your Savings
Loose change might not seem like much, but you’d be surprised by how quickly it can all add up.
The next time you receive change, throw all of that into a container to take to the bank. They have change counters that can quickly count all those coins and bills so you don’t have to.
4. Get Bigger by Eating Out Less
Yeah this is a pretty common tip, but that’s because it works. Eating out can be cheap depending on where you go, but it becomes expensive when you do it a lot.
Buying and making food at home is much cheaper in the long run because you get a lot more out of the ingredients. The money you save by eating at home can then help your savings account grow instead.
Hunker Down and Try These 6 Serious Money Saving Tips
1. Limit Buyers Remorse
One way to save money is by waiting before you make any big purchases.
Impulse buying is the mortal enemy of any budget and all money experts agree that it’s good to wait a few hours before buying an item, preferably 24 hours if you can.
2. Match Up Your Spending and Saving
When you buy any non-essential items, match up your savings first. If you can’t afford to save the same amount that you want to spend, then it’s probably a good idea to forgo that purchase.
Follow-up is key here too:
If you can match your spending and saving, then it’s important to not just give yourself the go-ahead to spend that money but also put the same amount into your savings account.
3. Start a Separate Account for Big Purchases
This might seem like a pain to do, but it pays off in the end because you don’t end up accidentally spending that money on something else.
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It might take a couple of months before you buy that thing you want, but you’ll know it’s something you want and you won’t be paying the interest you would have been paying if you had put it on a credit card.
4. Get an App That Rounds Up
A lot of people pay through digital methods like Samsung Pay and Zapper these days.
Apps are extremely convenient and this convenience also extends to apps that help you save.
Qapital and BoostUp are two examples of apps that “round up” your purchase and put the difference into a savings account. There are plenty of variations, including ones that invest your change or automatically save money in your debit account based on your purchasing habits.
An app can be an easy way to start saving money without even thinking about it.
5. Wait as Long as You Can Before Creating New Debt
Try to wait as long as possible to buy a new car, for instance, if your current car is already paid off. Each month without that car payment is money that can go directly into your savings account.
6. Opt for Cash Instead of a Card
People find it much easier to give away money when they don’t actually see that money going out of their pockets.
Using cash is a good way to keep track of how much you’re actually spending and usually helps keep overspending in check.
The Bottom Line
Saving money can seem just as complicated as getting it.
But just like there here are easy ways to make money, saving money can be a cinch too if you know how to do it and stick with it.