Saving On Your Daily Basics

We all want to set a good example for our kids, and the best way to do that is through the doing itself. So, we need to cut back a little on our spending, but still comfortably live whilst a good amount of our income gets filed away into a savings account for use later. And the best place to tackle is the money that goes into what we buy everyday to keep our household full of goods! Here’s some ideas on cutting back on the daily basics we don’t actually need that much of.

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Understand Where Your Money Goes

Every week we use our finances to take care of multiple parts of life, so working out where your money goes and the percentage each time is the first step. So, this is a lifeline for people who are already looking into visiting debtconsolidation.co, as paying off any debt we already have is key to keeping our money flowing properly.

So your bills are taken care of and any debt you have you know you’ll be able to manage; that’s an incredibly secure place to be! Once we know we’re in the clear, it’s time to plan out what goes into what. Does your money all drain away into a savings fund? Or maybe you’re overbuying from the supermarket whenever you go out to it? Or maybe you have no clue what your finances are doing, and you’re just on a monitoring schedule. Consider your usual week and then go from there.

Tackle Food First

Food is a big money suck, and that’s because we need it to live! It can probably get pretty annoying that the peppers you bought only a couple of days ago are already pruning up, so that means we need a little reevaluation on what we buy. If you know you’re not going to use it, immediately put it back.

Make some meal plans for the family, and try to churn them out at the beginning of each week. If you know what to buy and absolutely know you’re going to use it, your meals will be more delicious and the fruit and vegetables that cost a little more than the microwavable packet burger will be worth the investment.

The long and short of it is: know what food you have in your cupboards and your fridge, and keep the basics stocked up, and plan your meals out in advance to cut back on any waste.

Then Cut Out the Little Luxuries

It’s good to have a treat from time to time, we deserve it for working so hard after all! Yet, once a week is a pretty good schedule for them, and more regularly might be where you’re going wrong. Don’t cut out the nights out with your friends, but make sure they’re more of an occasion!

You can easily buy lower priced treats, such as bath bombs for your own spa night, and movies to watch at home. Don’t overspend on basics!

Learning about Money- the Financial A, B, Cs

When it comes to learning about money there is so much information that it is challenging to know where to start. That is no excuse however for burying your head in the sand and making money someone else’s responsibility.

This simple guide outlines a few essential money principals.

Learning the financial abcs of money - chalkboard image

A is for Awareness

Typically people know how much they earn. Whether it’s by the week, month or hour, you know how much you earn and notice when something is different. But what about the other side of the equation? Do you know how much you spend?

Lack of awareness of spending can lead you to run out of cash, go overdrawn or rely on credit cards. Each of these has financial consequences. Being in charge of your money gives you a sense of wellbeing and control. A good place to start is by checking your bank statement, either online or a paper version. Go through line by line, can you identify each item? Many people find things they do not recognise or regular payments which they had forgotten about such as subscriptions. Maybe you accepted a trial offer which now is being charged?

Another example of awareness is being conscious over small regular amounts which you might spend every day. If you spent for example £5 a day on lunch, that may equate to over £1000 during a year. Would it be worth making a sandwich or salad at home and have £1000 for a holiday or other purpose?

B is for Budget

For many, Budget is a four letter word, but it need not be a negative. Taking a few minutes to plan what you are going to spend is a great step to putting you in control of your money and not the other way around. You can set a budget for any area of your life including fun and socialising. Many people find that by setting aside money for fun purposes means they can enjoy it more and be free of any guilt that they should be saving or spending the money elsewhere.

Setting a budget is a really simple task. Take a few minutes to list all the areas in which you spend money, then put your best estimate of the amount you currently spend next to it. When you add up the figures hopefully the total will be less than you earn. If not you will need to adjust the spending until it does. While you are feeling virtuous why not include a category for saving and reward yourself with a fun or play budget which you have to spend each month.

C is for Compound Interest

Einstein described compound interest as the eighth wonder of the world. The trouble is that it can work for you or against you. If you are paying interest on loans or credit cards the power of compound interest is increasing the debt and draining your current and future income.

If you have an outstanding balance on a credit card and just pay the minimum percentage each month it may take over 20 years to clear the debt! If you are only able to pay a fraction each month, make sure you are paying a fixed money amount rather than the percentage sometimes offered when you take out the card.

With interest so low at the time of writing there may seem like little incentive to save. This may be true in terms of financial gain from the savings alone, but the accumulated money saved can eventually be invested and grow at a better rate. The habit of saving money and living on less than 100% of your income is the important financial gain.

Monthly Budgeting Plans: Teach Your Kids The Importance

It can be challenging to budget each month and still have cash left to enjoy, and save, especially in a busy family home. However, for a young family to thrive, and maintain financial wellbeing and security; it’s a skill that parents need to be adept at, and pass on to their children. Young minds are impressionable, and like little sponges; therefore, the life skills you show them, will sink in and help them in their future adult lives. The sooner you teach your little ones skills with budgeting and saving their money, the better they’ll become with financial skills.

Consumerism is only growing stronger, and there are more ways to shop and spend money than ever before. Therefore, you’ll want to equip your kids with as many money skills as possible before they head out, to study, work, and take on adult responsibilities. The following are some tips and ideas on how to begin influencing your children and their long-term financial choices, so they too can enjoy a secure and comfortable future.

Monthly Budgeting Plans: Teach Your Kids The Importance - cute kid image

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Lead By Example

The best way to influence your little ones is to lead by example. Your kids will constantly be soaking up what you do and mirroring their parent’s behaviour, even if they don’t realise it, so become a great financial role model for them. Explain how your household bills work, and the reasons that you go out to work; ensure that they can grasp the idea of generating an income so that you have the means to pay for life’s essentials.

You may have taken out a loan for your home, or still be juggling student debts; you can check out sites like cashloans.co for ideas and information on working out the correct repayment plan for your family. You can pass on the knowledge about budgeting your monthly outgoings to older children and teens, so they understand how all borrowed money has to be paid back. Educating your kids on how and why adults spend their income, will ensure they’re financially savvy when it comes to leaving the family home and setting out into the big wide world.

Give Them An Income

A great way for your kids and teens to learn how to budget is to let them put it into practice while they still live at home. Providing weekly pocket money, or a monthly allowance, in exchange for jobs and chores will reiterate how they can earn in the future. If they want to buy something in particular; encourage them to save their own cash so that they can buy it themselves. Working towards something they want, saving successfully, and eventually going to buy it will give them plenty of positive associations with saving money, and ensure they continue their good habits into adulthood.

Set up a bank account for your kids and go through their monthly statements with them. Children and teens will soon get to grips with how and income, savings, interest, and spending will work on a larger scale in the future. Providing your kids with enough information regarding finance will make sure they make smart decisions when it comes to cash in the future, and won’t be coming back to mum and dad (all the time) for handouts and loans.

Living A Champagne Lifestyle On A Lemonade Budget

We all want to live a champagne lifestyle, but if we don’t have the 5-star budget that is needed to fund it, there is no way it’s going to be possible. Don’t think you will be able to increase your finances anytime soon to pay for a deluxe life? No problem! There are actually some ways you can make your lemonade budget stretch to cover all those champagne life choices, whether you are based in the UK or US. Read on to find out more!

Living A Champagne Lifestyle On A Lemonade Budget - champagne glass image

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Always Go With The Budget Alternative

 No matter what you buy to treat yourself, there is going to be a wide range of products for you to choose from. For instance, if you love indulging in a few glasses of wine on a Friday night, you will always see that there are a few different bottles to choose from in UK supermarkets at different prices. But don’t just go for the most expensive option. Otherwise, your finances will quickly drain away, and you won’t be able to splash out on other things. So, if you are going to treat yourself with something luxe, it’s always a good idea to go with the cheapest option.

Consider Relocating

Did you know that there are some neighborhoods that can impact on your finances? This is especially the case in the UK and US. Those areas and boroughs that are often considered quite high-class and posh often feature exclusive supermarkets while the cheapest grocery stores are located in areas that aren’t so well off. So, take a look at current property for sale in the UK and the US to see if you could move to a cheaper location. Once you’ve paid for all the initial moving costs, you will find that life works out a lot cheaper over the long run!

Search Coupon Websites

If you have your eye on something that is slightly above your budget, don’t fear – there might be a very simple way to make it a lot more affordable. And that solution is to take a look at coupon websites. Most UK and US coupon and voucher sites feature deals and discounts for fashion stores and big name brands. If you are lucky, you might even find some designer names on there as well! Most vouchers and coupons can be used online or in-store.

 Cut The Fat

It’s a good idea to sit down and take a look at all your receipts from the past month. Did you buy anything that you don’t really need? Or maybe you still have a direct debit leaving your account each month for a service that you haven’t used in a while. If so, you need to cut down on these purchases. That way, you can cut the fat, and will find that you have a lot more money left over to spend on luxury items. Plus, managing your money in this way will make you a lot more responsible with your finances.

As you can see, being able to afford the champagne lifestyle that you’ve always dreamed of shouldn’t be too difficult. It’s just about being more careful about how you look after your finances!

The Ultimate Guide To Spending Less

Extracted from The Ultimate Guide To Spending Less: 117 Tips! by Klaus Nymand.

Are you the type of person who wants to save money but isn’t about that spreadsheet life? You don’t live for crunching numbers and you don’t need an in-depth course in personal finance. This guide to money saving tips is exactly what you’ve been hoping for.

Use this guide on how to save money to pick up savings tips you like and skim over the rest. There is something in here for everyone. Remember that the smallest change can yield big results over time.

1. Use The Envelope Budgeting Method

This method works best for cash stashers. You have to have some willpower or the ability to not rob Peter to pay Paul. Work out your monthly expenses and assign an envelope for each. Deposit the correct amount of cash in each envelope each pay period to equal the amount due at month’s end.

2. Segment Your Money In Multiple Bank Accounts

These days, most of us need our income available in digital form. We pay bills online and that’s a challenge with the envelope method above.

Luckily, you can accomplish the same end by opening a second checking account. This second account is your master envelope. Put all of the correct apportioned amounts into that account each pay period.

When it’s time to pay your bills, all of the money is ready to send out from that account.

Paypal has a great prepaid debit card that you can use for this purpose if you can’t or don’t want a new bank account.

3. How To Use Prepaid Cards To Budget

In fact, prepaid debit cards can really help with budgeting! For starters, there are no overdraft fees to drain your already strained finances. If you play your budget to the razor’s edge, a prepaid card will give you some peace of mind. Use them to pay bills and shop online.

4. Why You Should Keep An Allowance In Cash

If the methods above sound like too much work, reverse engineer it! Figure out what your weekly bill figure is. Leave that amount in your bank account and take cash as your spending money.

Of course, if you prefer your spending money on a card, grab a prepaid debit and load it with your weekly allowance.

5. How To Earn More With A Side Gig

Depending on your talents, you may find a side job is a great way to budget since it creates more money to work with. Websites like Fiverr, Upwork, and People Per Hour make it relatively easy to pick up some digital side work you can do from home. You can even monetize your photos through platforms like Pixabay.

The Penny Hoarder is a great resource for learning about potential side hustles. Just be sure to research anything you find there before you jump into it.

6. Leverage Rounding In Your Budget

If you have some room in your budget after bills, try rounding all of your bills up a few dollars. If your electric bill is generally $37.50 a month, stash around $40. This will slowly pad your bill account for emergencies.

7. Remember To Pay Yourself First

When money is tight it’s so easy to scramble to pay your bills and forget to set any aside for a rainy day. Whether you invest in a retirement account or keep a meager savings, putting your own savings at the top of your bill list helps you actually save.

This tip covers matching your employer’s contributions to your retirement accounts if you can.

8. Eliminate A Luxury On A Rotating Basis To Save

Think of this tip like financial Lent. You’re going to look at your debit account and see where you spend the most money on a luxury. Hopefully, there is more than one so you can rotate your cuts. If not, you can go a week on and a week off.

Once you see where you are spending extra money, abstain from those purchases for a week. When the week is over, add that bonus back in and remove something else.

This way you never feel too depressed about skimping to save money.

9. Choose Accounts That Work For You

Bank of America’s Keep The Change program rounds up every purchase using your debit card and deposits the change in your savings account. This is a brilliant way to save if your problem is actually setting money aside.

If you can’t swing that kind of increase in your spending, look for new accounts you can open that give cash with sign up. This may be actual cash or in the form of a gift card.

Many online banks provide higher interest rates to their customers to entice them to sign up. If you are paid through direct deposit you can open a high-interest checking account at a bank like Allied Bank and earn more interest than most standard accounts.

10. Try Micro-Investing

The Stash app and others like it capitalize on the popular trend of micro-investing. Users invest as little as $5 in fractional shares. Buy as often or as rarely as you like. You can also combine this tip with skipping a luxury and invest the cash instead.

In addition to Stash, Acorns and Clink work similarly but with slightly different features.

To read more of Klaus Nymand’s excellent money saving tips (there are 117 in all) please visit 

https://moneybanker.com/us/blog/ultimate-guide-to-spending-less-117-tips/