Money. The root of all evil, am I right? Between student loans and credit card debt and wanting more than we (and I mean we generally) have, money always seems to cause problems. Today I want to share with you 5 ways you can save money each month – and bonus – they’re things I actually do! No random mumble jumble, haha.
1. Get rid of cable.
I know, I know. What? It’s doable, I promise. And it will save you a big chunk of change each month. Kyle and I haven’t had cable in almost 3 years, and we love it (even if he misses his ESPN). What do we do instead? Well, we pay $8 a month for Netflix, and we also went out and purchased a cheap antenna so we can watch over-the-air channels (that way I can get my Bachelor fix). Another option is purchasing Sling TV for $20/month if you want some additional channels. We purchase this at different times during the year for a month or two, depending on the sports season. That way Kyle can watch the games he wants to watch and I can take advantage of having HGTV and ABC Family (ahem…. Freeform) for a while.
2. Plan and stick to a budget.
This is probably one of the hardest things to do, you have to be so disciplined, but also flexible, to stick to a budget. What do I mean by that? Well, you have to be disciplined and not by ALL THE THINGS even though they’re on sale in order to make your budget work. But you also have to be flexible to be able to re-assess monthly if your budget is working. Always going over on a certain necessary expense? Maybe you need to up that budget while cutting down on another less necessary expense, etc., etc.
3. Pay with cash.
Going along with #2, paying with cash is a GREAT way to stick to a budget. Basically, you withdraw cash for each expense category, and once it’s gone, it’s gone. This is especially good for groceries, fast food, dates, and personal expenses. It’s so easy to just swipe your card and not actually realize how much money is being drained from your bank account (or added to your credit card!), so carrying actual cash will make you more aware of how much you’re spending.
4. Meal plan and stop eating out.
I’m going to be posting about how I meal plan a bit later, but suffice it to say that by planning meals and preparing them at home, you can save so much money! Especially when it comes to fast food. And if you meal plan and shop with a list, you’ll save so much money by not buying random food and impulse buying.
5. Get a credit card with rewards.
I know, what? Isn’t using a credit card the opposite of saving money? It can be, but it doesn’t have to be. If you utilize your credit card like a debit card and pay it off each month, you will not only be building credit, but you will be able to earn rewards. Kyle and I have the Amazon credit card and the Southwest credit card. With our Amazon one we are able to earn points that convert into a balance to use on Amazon purchases. We often use those points to buy Christmas and birthday presents! And with our Southwest card we earn miles, so we can use them to visit family — we’re currently saving to fly to Florida for free to visit my dad! I know there are many others out there, so research them and find one or two that work for your family and your needs.
So there you go! 5 ways to save money! It’s nothing too crazy, but I hope it helped and gave you an idea of where to stop spending and start saving. If you have any ideas, throw that at me in the comments below so other readers and I can get some more great ideas!