Saving money is easier said than done. With the cost of living growing and wages increasing at a slower rate, it can feel like you’ll never catch up. The good news is that you can take steps to boost your savings no matter how small your budget is.
1) Save on purchases that aren’t an investment
There’s just no getting around it sometimes – you can’t always avoid making big purchases. While buying a home is an investment, other big purchases won’t save or make you any money. One of the most significant non-investment purchases you’ll make is buying a vehicle. The moment you drive it off the lot, it drops in value.
Instead of essentially throwing away 30K (or more!) on a brand new vehicle, look for used cars. Buying a car that’s even just a couple of years old will save you thousands of dollars. Some makes and models also depreciate faster than others, so buy a reliable car and get at least some of your money back when you go to sell it down the line.
2) Round up your purchases
Do you find it difficult to set aside money from your paychecks each month? Putting hundreds of dollars at a time into a separate account can feel daunting, but you don’t have to follow this strategy to see your savings grow.
The next time you finish paying at the store, take your change and put it in a jar. It may only feel like a few dollars here and there, but you’ll be surprised by how quickly that jar fills up.
Don’t pay with cash? There are many apps like Wealth Simple that will automatically invest the spare change from your debit and credit purchases.
3) Stick to no-spend months
If you struggle with impulse shopping, try doing no-spend months. Rather than trying to quit that impulse habit cold turkey, allow yourself to buy only the essentials every second month of the year. By waiting to make non-essential purchases, you’ll be able to sort between the things you truly want and the things that were just the whim of the moment.
Does that rug you wanted to make your home feel new still feel important four weeks later? If so, consider purchasing it. However, if you’ve completely forgotten about those shoes you had your eye on, you’ve avoided an impulse buy. Now you have more money in your pocket than you would have had otherwise.
4) Simplify your life
One of the easiest ways to save more money is to simplify your life. Often, people spend money on things they think they need – because they see other people with these things. Do you genuinely need that shiny new vehicle? Your home doesn’t look like a showhome, but so what?
Cutting things from your life can seem scary at first. To make it less daunting, give it a trial run first. Start reading some articles on minimalism and vow to lead a minimalist lifestyle for a month. After the month is up, assess what worked for you and what didn’t. You may be surprised by how well it worked for you!
5) Start investing
You can put almost all of your paycheck into a savings account each month, but it will never be enough unless you start investing. If you’re inexperienced with investing, get started with low-risk and guaranteed investments. Watch videos, read books, and talk to an investment advisor at your bank. It’s never too late to begin investing.