You have come to the right place if you are looking for ways to save money!
It may be the case that you are already using some of these ways to save money, but finding out about a few more could help to improve your finances. Improving your finances will lead you to live the life that you want and give you more options.
Learning about many different ways to save money can help you change areas in your life such as:
- Getting out of debt
- Building an emergency fund
- Starting to invest for the future
- Retiring Early
- Live your dream life and go on holiday when and where you want
Bring Your Lunch To Work
I have been doing this for over 7 years now and estimate that so far I have saved myself over $4,000. My packed lunch costs on average around $2 per day and I could easily spend over $5 per day if I were to buy my own. A coffee and some food from somewhere like Starbucks or Costa (other coffee shops are available!) would tip you over $5 with very little effort. My normal lunch consists of a salad, with some form of protein (Poultry, meat, fish, etc) and some fruit.
A change to your lunch habits like this will be one of the healthiest ways to save money. You will save hundreds, if not thousands each year.
Cancel Your TV Subscription And Get Freeview
According to the Telegraph, the average TV and phone package in Canada is just under $50. This excludes the cost of other TV subscription services such as Amazon Prime and Netflix. I can sacrifice anything temporarily if it allows me to do something like paying off debt. Get rid of these popular TV subscription services as well as your Sky, BT, or Virgin Media package. This will allow you to save money and maybe you can read a book or a blog instead!
Give Up Bottled Water
Thames Water states that its tap water costs around 0.097p per liter (<10% of a penny!). Whereas bottled water costs you 500 times more and upwards of 50p a liter. There are some savings to be made considering the average person will spend $25,000 on bottled water in their lifetime. Instead of buying bottled water try to drink tap water or even buy a filter to improve the quality and taste of the water. Of course, there may be some parts of the country where the water is not clean or palatable enough to drink.
Use Airbnb for your next holiday
Normally I like to stay in hotels, if I am traveling in a larger group then Airbnb can be perfect. If you just prefer your privacy, I recommend you use a website such as Airbnb (this will give you a $25 off Airbnb coupon code for your next stay). It is a great way to find affordable accommodation or even host guests with your property. Airbnb holiday home rates are usually on par with or are cheaper than a hotel. You get more privacy, more room and usually a kitchen if you want to do your cooking. It generally works out cheaper when you have many people going on holiday with you. You can split the cost of a house vs getting a hotel room for everyone. This is especially good for families with children.
Do a Savings Challenge
There are many savings challenges available as ways to save money such as the $20 (or $20) savings challenge promoted by Michelle at Making Sense of Cents. By saving $20 per week, you will accumulate $1,040 at the end of the year. Ricky at Skint Dad recommends the 1p saving challenge where you save an increasing amount each day for the 365 days of the year. 1p on day one, 2p on day 2, 3p on day 3 etc.
I prefer the $1 challenge and the idea is that you save an increasing amount each week for every week of the year. The first few weeks are the easiest requiring you to put away a small amount of money. Therefore in week one, you save $1, in week two you save $2, and in the last four weeks of the year, you are saving $49, $50, $51, and $52 respectively. In total for the year, you will have saved $1,378, not bad.
Automate your money
The popular personal finance author David Bach writes in his book – The Automatic Millionaire – that to become a millionaire you need to automate your life. Set up direct debits for your bill payments and standing orders to save money into a separate account. He also says that by keeping an hour a day of your pay and always paying yourself first you can save and invest enough money to become a millionaire.
Check Your Credit Score
I am not a fan of taking out unnecessary debt or credit accounts just to maintain your credit score. To be honest, I do not care about my credit score, although it is excellent, it just happens to be a by-product of the way I handle my finances. However, I do believe that you should check your credit score at least once a year. You can pay the credit reference agencies a fee or Make sure your report is accurate and there are no defaults on there. This is important because a bad credit score can cause you to have a higher interest rate on your debt.
Think Before You Buy
My wife thinks I take too long before I purchase most things! The truth is I like to do my homework first, especially if it is a reasonably large purchase. You know that feeling you get after making a very large purchase, which makes you question whether you did the right thing? That is known as post-purchase cognitive dissonance (aka buyer’s remorse). I hate that feeling but I eliminate it by doing my research. Before making a big purchase ask yourself a few questions:
Can I afford this item?
How will I feel about the purchase in 1 year and 5 years from now?
Is it a need or want?
There are other questions you can ask yourself but these get you to think a bit deeper about your purchases. If you are buying a hamburger you shouldn’t spend more than 20 seconds thinking about it. But if you are about to spend $20,000 on a car, you should think about it for a little longer than that!
Reduce your number of holidays
This will not be one of the most popular ways to save money, but you could cut down on the number of holidays you have each year. My wife and I have 1-2 holidays abroad each year, most of our friends have somewhere between 4-6. That’s fine if you have the money, but if you want to save some money, halve the number of holidays you have each year. If you only have one holiday a year, cut the cost in half.
Plan your meals
Using the same principle as point number 1, plan your meals. It will allow you to eat healthier and waste less food. This is what we do every week, if we do not plan our meals we end up eating a lot of fast food takeaway meals. Which not only costs us more but is generally more unhealthy. While we are at the supermarket, we match the number of days we will be eating together with the number of meals we need. Sometimes I am away on Business Trips which reduces the amount of food required. If we have 5 meals chosen for the week, we then eat whichever has the shortest date first. This has worked for us for the past 7 years or so. Meal planning even in its simplest form will change your life if you do not already do this.
Most of these 10 ways to save money should allow you to have some quick wins with saving money. If you can make tasks like these simple enough, they can become habitual as we are all creatures of habit. I enjoy living a relatively frugal life and so use most of these ways to save money as part of my normal behavior. I hope you can use at least one of these to save yourself some money.
What other ways to save money do you know?
How much money do you manage to save each month?