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It can be really difficult to not spend a lot of money sometimes. Once in a while, you just feel like you have some cash burning a hole in your pocket and you can’t help yourself. You know what I mean?
Well, here are some good tips from AskReddit users about how you can start saving money immediately.
1. Just say no.
“I’m not sure if this works for you guys but don’t go grocery shopping on an empty stomach.”
2. A comprehensive list.
“Here is my full list:
Make your lunches for work. Seriously, it saves so much money.
Buy from thrift stores for clothes. I have to wear some fancy clothes and some jeans/tshirts for work depending on the day. I have really nice clothes that people comment on. “Where did you get that?” Goodwill.
Get a Costco/Sams Club or some other type of membership. Saves a ton to buy in bulk.
Set up a savings account that you have to go into the bank to access. Make it Autodraft from your checks. Bam. You don’t feel bad about money you spend anymore because you already saved.
Wait at least 2 days before buying something over $50. Good chance you don’t remember wanting to buy it.
Get a rewards credit card. Pay it off in full once the statements come out. No need to pay interest. You use it as if you had the exact amount of cash in hand, and you budget as if that money is gone (because it is). Get free shit from rewards!
If you don’t watch sports, cut cable. Netflix/Hulu have nearly every show known to man. Also, many cable channels post shows online legally for free. Try not using your cable for a month. It is easier than you think. I suggest this for sports, too. Just go to a bar. That is still cheaper than cable.
Set goals. You will feel better about accomplishing something his way. That goal should first be $1000, then an emergency fund of 3 months expenses, then try to beef that up to 6 months if you can. Then, and only then, buy crap like TVs or cars. I don’t recommend new stuff, but so long as you hit your savings goals whatever.
Learn how investing works. Compounding interest is your friend. Even if you can’t get to a point to invest yet, do not be afraid of the market. Approach it as a math problem instead of a money problem. Learn how it works, and start investing in index funds once you can.
Get a Roth IRA. Even if you can’t access something from work, the new MyRA is made specifically for new savers. It is a safe way of starting a retirement fund. It is too conservative money wise for my taste, however it still makes a great starting point.
And that is my list for people.”
3. Some smart moves.
“If you get paid weekly, start a weekly planning budget.
If it’s bi weekly, plan it out bi weekly,
Let’s take an example.
You get paid every Friday.
Write your income on what you get paid for that week.
Below it – write down your debts/bills that you want to pay off for that week.
Make sure you calculate and leave yourself enough room to have $150-200 for the remainder of the week for food/gas expenses until your next paycheck.
If you have large debt that you can’t pay off weekly or bi weekly.
Cut them down in fractions and pay them off incrementally.
Overtime you’ll see the diligence you’ve created for yourself to pay off debt will ultimately set you up with a financial standard for how you “spend” your money.
Once you have eliminated all debts (besides car payment) and you have more wiggle room. I recommend setting up a savings/a credit union account/ and even a Roth IRA.
Have $50 each week fall into the accounts.
Let them grow- forget about them- come back in a year or so. You’ll be happy.”
4. Get organized.
“Clean your fridge and pantry, if you don’t know you own it, you won’t eat it. Being clean and organized is free.”
5. Make a meal plan.
“Plan out and cook your own meals with fresh ingredients.”
6. Make some changes.
“Don’t feel you have to change your lifestyle; merely change the frequency of your indulgences:
Going to Starbucks daily? Try weekly.
Go to the movies weekly? Try once a month.
Go clothes shopping monthly? Try once a quarter.
It’s psychologically much easier to tell yourself you’re not giving anything up, you’re just going to savor them more.
Oh and start using a service like mint to track both spending and progress towards goals.”
7. This is a big one.
“Cancel cable and switch to a streaming service ala Netflix.”
8. Acting on impulse.
“Before making a purchase, ask yourself: “What impact is this purchase going to have on my life?”, “Is this a necessity?”
This usually stops me from impulse buys.”
9. Month by month.
“Take one month and actually track your expenses. At the end of the month add up all expenses that weren’t absolutely essential. You’ll be shocked to see how much of your monthly income was spent frivolously.”
10. No more Starbucks.
“Make your own coffee. Seriously, it’s made such a huge difference in my wallet. It’s one of those things that adds up so incrementally at $1.80 a pop, that I didn’t really stop to tally it all up. Once I made the shift to make my own coffee at work, and bring my own lunch more often, it helped a lot with saving money.”
11. I like this one.
“Some advice I heard on reddit a whole ago:
Spend your money where you spend your time..
If you spend a lot of time on your feet – invest in decent comfortable shoes regardless of the extra cost.
If you drive a long way quite regularly, spend money on the inside of the car and how it feels to drove the car over how it looks.
When you start thinking like that, you also start to notice the superficial stuff you overspend on.”
12. Think in different terms.
“Stop thinking of things in dollar amounts and instead think of them in terms of how long you would have to work to pay for them.
Last week I wanted fog lights for my truck, when I realized it was three days of work to purchase them, I didn’t want them anymore.”
13. Kind of a waste of money.
“Don’t go out to drink. My friend always simultaneously complains about how he has no money and how I’m no fun. Somehow drinking 3 or 4 drinks at the bar almost every night doesn’t appeal to me. Especially here in California. Dude is spending like at least $40 every night he goes.”
14. Quality is key.
“Spend a little extra money for better quality. It’s better to buy one nice car that’s a little more expensive than two shitty cars that break down quickly. I try to do this for most things that are necessities and I save money in the long run. Don’t follow that rule for every purchase though.”
15. Might be time to ditch the car…
“Bus and walk whenever you can. Seriously think about going carless: they cost a fortune.”
So that last tip… it’ll also help you lose weight. True story, I did that for a year and I dropped 15 pounds without even thinking about it.
What tips did you like? Got any tips for us to think about?
Share them in the comments!