How many times have you asked yourself where your money is goes? How many times have you asked yourself where you could cut back so you could have extra money for emergencies or a much needed vacation? Many families today struggle to make ends meet living paycheque to paycheque and have idea where their money is going. Make a budget. It’s important to know where your money goes.
If you’re into the tens of thousands of dollars in debt see a bankruptcy trustee. It may make sense to clear your debts, get rid of collections calls and start anew. Now just because you declared bankruptcy doesn’t mean that you’re in the clear forever. A lot of times bad habits are hard to break and can cause multiple bankruptcies. Some of our remaining tips will help ensure that you avoid having to do it again. As your credit goes down with every bankruptcy you want to avoid doing this again as it just makes the hole you have to climb out even deeper the next time. Once out of debt, build a reserve fund. The law of averages means that emergencies will happen. This reserve fund you build will help you avoid borrowing in the future with credit cards or expensive payday loan business.
Our Six Easy Ways for You to Save Money
1. Little Things Add Up!
How many people stop to grab a morning coffee at Tim Horton’s on the way to work or the doing their errands? Making coffee at home and taking it in a reusable coffee mug saves you a lot of money over the course of a year. Grabbing one extra large coffee a day at $2.10 times 5 days equals $10.50 a week, $42.00 a month or $504.00 a year. If you buy one can of coffee, you can have several cups a month and save money. Buying one can of Maxwell House Coffee for around $6, you get approximately 60 pots per tin or 120 XL Tim Horton’s coffees which works out to $252.00 compared to the $6. This is a savings of $246.00 which could be put away for an emergency fund. That also doesn’t include the wasted gas waiting in the drive thru line which also saves time and money. You also need to think about the time you spend in line at Tim Horton’s. Often morning line ups are from our experience about 7-9 minutes. At 7 minutes times about 240 working days a year that’s 28 hours a year for just the morning coffee. At minimum wage of $11.40 per hour that’s an extra $319.20 in lost working time.
2. Save on Food
An easy way to save money is to go through the grocery flyers. Make sure you try to purchase items when they are on sale and price match items your family use. Plan your meals ahead of time to avoid impulse shopping at the store. Create a shopping list on your smartphone using the Flipp app. This app is also very helpful to use for price matching the sales at the other supermarkets. Price matching also saves you time and gas money, so you don’t have to go to all the stores selling the food your family eats on sale. I also have found that making leftovers for lunches and another dinner is also helpful and cost efficient instead of grabbing fast food on the way home. Taking your own lunch to work or school is also cheaper and healthier. Taking your lunch also allows you to plan your meals ahead of time, pick healthier, inexpensive food to avoid obesity thereby reducing the time needed at the gym, and also live within your budget.
3. Avoid Buying Luxuries on a Loan.
One idiot I know bought a BMX bike with a payday loan because he wanted a bike to do stunts with. Stunts increase your risk of getting hurt, which could seriously hurt your ability to make money. Eight weeks with a broken arm isn’t fun for you or any employer. Such careless actions cause financial hardship on not just yourself, but to others who depend on you. Never purchase luxuries on credit. This is an example of money being spent foolishly.
4. Why you Need to Budget.
It sounds like a buzz kill, but budgeting is essential to be financially successful. Always pay the bills before spending on the hobbies or wants. Don’t leave so little money in your bank account that you can’t pay the service fee because this just puts you behind and ruins your relationship with your bank. One budget blower I heard purchased so many Yu-Gi-Oh game cards that they didn’t leave enough money to enter and play in the tournament. Buying all the cards and not being enter the tournament to have fun with them seems rather senseless. This is an example of planning and budgeting to be successful in your hobby. Living within your budget allows you to plan ahead for the adventures or holidays you really have dreamed about taking, or just taking the time off of work to enjoy some relaxation at home without the worry about how the bills will be paid.
5. Saving on Broadband and Cable TV Costs.
Download frequently viewed YouTube videos instead of streaming them repeatedly. You will be amazed how quickly the kids repeatedly watching a streaming video can use up your data limit. Use a smart TV in combination with a Netflix subscription and YouTube to have more programming options and maybe downgrade your cable package.
6. Two Ways to Save on Travel.
For many people on fixed incomes, they depend on public transit to get around. It is much cheaper to take the city bus or walk to the grocery store than to use taxis. If you go to the local mall, you can purchase a small grocery cart and if packed properly you can fill with groceries for a week or two and board the bus back home or walk home if you live within walking distance. You also get free exercise to boot. Taxi cabs cost almost triple the cost of the bus and to me it seems like an awful waste of money.
This all seems to be pretty self explanatory, but when you actually sit down with the receipts, document each purchase you can see where so much money is wasted and many people are surprised when they do this. I am not saying that treating yourself every so often isn’t ok to do, but doing it within reason is the important key to a better financially secure future.
I would suggest to start by downsizing the services, multiple trips to trips to Tim Horton’s and see how much you can save in a month. I believe that once you see the bank account growing you will continue saving for a debt free future.