Thinking of new ways that you can save money? These 10 financial tips can help you live frugally and save money:
1. Get Organized.There are many free and inexpensive programs that are designed to help you become more aware of your financial health. Mint.com is a FREE option that will help you see where your money is going, allowing you to create a budget that will hold you accountable. Quicken is an inexpensive product that is similar to Mint.com, but includes added features such as saving your receipts electronically.
2. Stay Aware. Many financial institutions offer e-Alerts for their members. This simple tool is a “must have” in personal finance. e-Alerts can help make sure that you never overdraft again. You can set up your e-Alerts to text you when your balances are low, or to notify you when a large purchase has been made.
3. Pay Conveniently. Spread out your bills to be paid throughout the entire month. If every bill is paid from the same paycheck you will have less money for month-long expenses, such as groceries, increasing your chances of over drafting on your account. Spread bills out, pay them early, and try to have them paid equally between both paychecks if you get paid biweekly.
4. Shop Annually. Shop around for competitive auto insurance rates annually. There might be better plans now compared to when you first enrolled. Doing some research and doing a simple update could go a long way in saving you some money.
5. Transfer Balances. Why pay 18% interest on your credit card when you can transfer that balance to a credit card with a lower rate? A lower rate means you will pay off your credit card faster and pay less interest in the process. Take advantage of balance transfer promotions to find the best rate.
6. Find Alternatives. Instead of spending money on entertainment, like going to the movies or going out to eat, take advantage of the free alternatives like having a picnic or going on a hike.
7. Save Small. Saving often and in small amounts not only develops the habit of saving, but it can also produce great results when continued for the long haul. You might be surprised what $5 a week will add up to.
8. Limit Purchases. If you’re going to spend over $50 on something you may want to take a few minutes to consider if you truly need it. Is the video game really necessary or can I wait 6 months for it to drop in price? Is that restaurant too expensive? Can I do without it? Decrease those impulsive purchases, especially for items over $50.
9.Establish Needs. We buy things we want and then struggle to purchase those things we need. We could minimize our credit card purchases if we just asked the needs vs. wants question: Is this item a need or is this item a want? This simple question catches even the best of us in mismanagement. One of the most important things you can do is evaluate your next purchase.
10. Value Relationship. Financial security is often tied to who you know. You would be amazed when you look back through life at how many financial blessings, opportunities, and careers were initiated because of a relationship you developed during your educational years. Don’t forget to invest in others, because you may be glad you did later in life.