You know, I have been thinking (I don’t know if that’s a good thing or a bad thing) in our world of instant gratification, it’s more important than ever to be able to stay focused on saving money any way you can. So to help you monitor your spending habits and cut expenses, here are 20 easy way’s to save money every day—starting right now, after you finish reading this post. Ha! How’s that for instant gratification?
1. Make a weekly “money date.” Now before you think I have gone off the deep end, hear me out. Yes, I said it, honey you got to date your money! Commit to sitting down with your money once a week for a money date. During this time, update your budget, review your accounts and track your progress against your financial goals. Like any relationship, if you want your financial life to improve, you must spend time with your money. I know it’s not the most romantic date. but if you are under budget you can at least buy yourself some chocolate and enjoy your money date.
2. Plan out your meals for the week. Taking a few hours every weekend to grocery shop and meal plan for the week will definitely save you money, as dining
out is the No. 1 expense for most households. By eating at home, you save money that would otherwise be spent on tax and tip—and you usually save calories, too. And if you are married like me, with a meal plan your spouse won’t have to call you at 11:00 AM after he gets off of work asking you what’s for
dinner. Dude I haven’t even eaten lunch yet what do you mean what’s for dinner. I promise a meal plan has probably saved my marriage. All he has to do is look on the chalk board and boom, there is what’s for dinner.
3. Cut out cable. Gasp! Cut out TV?! Never! But with services like Hulu, Netflix and Amazon Prime, you can now watch your favorite TV shows and movies for a fraction of the cost of cable TV. That’s my advice to you lol do as I say not as I do, cause my cable ain’t going nowhere.
A study by market research firm NPD Group shows that cable bills will soon grow to an average of $123 per month, or $1,476 per year. By switching over to an online service or cutting out TV altogether, you can save that money for another financial goal—such as paying off debt, traveling or saving for a down payment on a home.
4. Switch to an exercise pass program. If you love working out, an exercise pass program such as Class Pass is the way to go. By paying a membership fee of $99 per month, you are welcome at many of the best studios in your area. And classes—like cycling, yoga, Pilates, barre, strength training, boot camp, dance and more—are unlimited. This beats having to pay for each studio’s monthly membership or individual class fee, which can add up to hundreds of dollars a month. Or, your son can be a personal trainer like mine and boyah FREE exercise plans. However, if your son isn’t then the Class Pass is the way to go!
5. Host a potluck. The more friends you have, the more money you spend on lunch dates, birthday parties and gifts. Switch it up and, instead of meeting over a fancy dinner, host a potluck and have everyone bring his or her favorite dish. That way, you can save money you’d spend on restaurant extras, such as tax, tip and parking—and you’ll usually have a more intimate meal together, too.
Now, here’s what I do cause I know you want to know What Would Tracie Do. I have two daughter’s and friend that work with me. We potluck our lunches. Each person brings a dish and we all eat for like two day’s. Saves us tons of money. One other thing is we combine the birthday’s in our family in the month and make one big potluck dinner do it. Happy birthday, and don’t say we didn’t think about you and for goodness sake please do not skimp on the March birthday’s cause I may feel some type of way if you do.
6. Leverage lodging rental websites. Finding a place to stay while traveling is so convenient when you use a lodging rental website such as Airbnb, Travelmob or Housetrip. You can often find a place that has a kitchen (so you can cook meals at home to save money) at a rate that’s comparable to hotels. You can even rent out your own place on sites such as Airbnb while you travel to make some extra cash to pay for your own travel expenses. It’s a win-win scenario.
Or, you can be extra cheap like me and go visit a relative and stay with them lol. I’ll be to see you soon son, with my suitcase and I’m staying a week! If he is reading this I know he is shaking his head. Love you boo!
7. Make coffee at home. This one’s not my favorite, as I absolutely love going to coffee shops and drinking delicious organic coffee. However, spending $4 to
$5 on coffee every day definitely adds up. So try my approach and allow yourself a few days a week to buy coffee at cafés, and make it at home the rest of the time. I promise it’s good to the last drop and nothings better than waking up with Folgers in your cup and money in the bank!
11. Outsource online. Time is a commodity, and your time is precious and valuable. And these days, there are so many tasks you can outsource that will save you time and money. But how do you figure out if outsourcing something is worth the expense?
A great thing to do is to actually calculate the cost of your time, which will help you figure out if you can pay someone to do something for less than your hourly rate. Here’s an example: A monthly net income of $3,000 divided by a total of 160 hours worked equals an hourly rate of $16.75. Now that you know the value of your time, you can strategically outsource it using a service like Fiverr or Task Rabbit for a fraction of your own hourly rate.
One task that I like to outsource is not found on Fiverr, it’s called cleaning house. I get mine done for free. Wanna know how? Her name is T’Aliyah and she gets no pay but she does get free room and board, all the food she can eat, dance classes, girl scouts and many more things a 9 year old can have lol. Yep I make my grand daughter help me.
As for my yard boy, that’s my grandson Tavarius, T-Man for short. He helps Pop Pop in the yard and get’s the same amenities T’Aliyah gets except for girl scouts. How’s that for outsourcing?
12. Get creative with gifts. Find creative ways to express your love to friends and family members with free, lower-cost or handmade birthday and holiday gifts. After all, a handwritten note explaining why you love someone can be more sentimental than some expensive gift he or she may never even use. Most people will appreciate the thought behind your gifts more than anything, so don’t be afraid to save money and find free ways to celebrate birthdays and holidays.
One of my favorite gifts was re-gifted to me by my baby boy. It is a coffee mug that I use at work when I make that Folgers in my cup.
13. Choose quality over quantity. This can apply to food, clothes, electronics and much more. Although it’s tempting to choose the more budget-friendly version of an item, sometimes choosing quality over quantity will save you more in the long run. Save up your money and get the best-quality product you can afford, and leverage the cost-per-wear philosophy with more expensive clothing and shoes.
This applies to food, too: Buying quality organic food can nourish you in ways that fill you up more than the prepackaged, processed stuff and potentially save you money on health-care expenses in the future, since you’re taking good care of yourself. Find a balance that is right for you and choose quality whenever you can.
14. Deal with your emotions. Excessive spending is often a way to avoid feeling certain emotions. If you check in with yourself before you go on a major spending spree, you may be able to identify if you’re feeling bored, lonely or stressed and are therefore spending money as a means to avoid the underlying emotion. Check in with yourself before you buy, and be mindful with your spending.
If you are in need of a money mindset makeover, you can take my FREE 5 day e-course. Sign up for that right here. I’m just full of shameless plugs today aren’t I ?
15. Stop trying to keep up with the Kardashians. It’s hard to keep your blinders on and not compare your financial life to that of others, especially celebrities. However, it is really important to be clear about what matters most to you and make sure you build a financial plan that supports that vision. This will keep you moving toward your financial goals and stop you from spending money on things you don’t need, to impress people you don’t like.
16. Read a personal finance book. When you learn about personal finance, you’ll learn even more strategies to help you save money for your goals in life. Knowledge is power, and the more you know, the more you can save.
Wouldn’t you know, I have another shameless plug. My book, Grandma’s Pearls of Wisdom: 12 Steps to Financial Freedom will be released later this year. If you wan’t first dibs before it hit’s the shelves, enter your info below.
17. Balance your “FOMO/YOLO” mind-set. With social media controlling our lives like never before, people often fall victim to the “fear of missing out” phenomenon and instead go overboard with a “you only live once” mentality.
While it is important to live in the present and soak up each precious moment of life, make sure you balance that out by saving for your financial future, too. Without checks and balances in place, you can find yourself saying yes to everything and spending more money than you have—all due to the fear of missing out.
18. Map out your financial goals. Be very specific with your financial goals. For example, saying, “I want to save for a home down payment” is not enough. You need to map out how much you need, by when and what you need to save every month in order to reach the goal. When you know what your targets are, you’re more likely to stay the course and continue saving for them for the long term.
19. Keep your eye on the prize. Baby, you got to have the eye of the tiger when it comes to keeping your eye on the prize. Staying focused on your goals takes discipline and determination. Saving can be easy and exciting at first, but after a while you may lose that initial motivation and start to find other things you can spend that money on. To avoid veering off course, check in with your goals regularly and keep your eye on the prize.
20. Track your progress. Americans save only 5.5 percent of their money compared to the 20 percent that personal finance indicates you should put away. But instead of feeling ashamed about your lack of savings, just start by saving something.
Even 1 percent is better than nothing. Track your progress and continue to increase the number year after year. Step by step, day by day, you can get to that 20 percent savings level.
Before you leave, make sure that you have gotten my FREE report 54 Way’s to Save Money. Also, please comment below and let me know if you have any way’s that you use to save every day. I’d love to incorporate them in my saving plan.