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!

Are Car Repair Costs Driving You Into Debt?

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Owning a car can be expensive enough without having to then pay for constant repairs on top. Many car owners will spend more money in repairs and servicing than they did buying the car initially. Fortunately there are many ways to bring these costs down and prevent yourself from heading into debt. Here are just a few ways to bring down these expenses.

Know when to make a claim

Third party car insurance won’t offer you any compensation. It’s worth upgrading to fire and theft or comprehensive cover as these could help you pay for damage done to your vehicle by others. When making a claim, it’s important to contact your insurer as soon as possible after the damage has occurred. Some insurers will only allow you to make a claim if you notify them within 48 hours. You don’t have to go through the claim process there and then, but you should let them know. Don’t get repairs until your insurer has accepted your claim and paid out (although it could be beneficial to spend this time getting quotes for repair services).

Similarly you may be able to make a legal claim if you have been injured in a car accident. Some of this money could help to go towards car repairs. Personal injury solicitors can help you to make a claim. Some will operate on a ‘no win no fee’ basis, meaning that you won’t have to pay these solicitors unless you win your claim.

Shop around for repair services

It’s worth getting multiple quotes from different repair centres in your area, especially when repairing major damage. Occasionally, you may be able to get loyalty rates by staying with one mechanic, however this shouldn’t stop you still shopping around for quotes to check that there isn’t anything cheaper out there.

Be wary of repair centres that are charging very cheap rates – they could be making up for a bad reputation. Many repair centres will have reviews online from users. Check these so that you know what you’re getting yourself into.

Negotiate

Once you’ve collected quotes from different repair centres, consider negotiating the price down. Not all repair centres will be open to negotiation as some may have fixed rates. In most cases, you’ll generally have to speak to the manager. Some mechanics may have an option of paying in instalments, which could make it more manageable to pay.

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Source your own parts

Repair centres will look to make a profit on any replacement parts they need to buy. You can sometimes save money by sourcing your own parts online. Second-hand parts will be cheaper, but could be partially damaged – meaning that they’re prone to breaking sooner in the future. Buy these parts from a trusted parts dealer. If you do decide to buy from an independent seller, make sure that photos are supplied so that you can guage an idea of the condition or buy locally so that you can go and inspect the part in person before buying. Be aware that legal requirements on the condition of parts varies from country to country. For example, when buying partially worn tyres from another country, be aware that the tread depth of those tyres may not be legal in your country.

Phone a friend

Do you have a friend or relative that’s handy beneath the bonnet of a car? If you trust that they are proficient enough, you could go to them for repairs for a discounted rate. Alternatively, there may be some repairs that you yourself feel confident enough to take on. There are Youtube tutorials and online how-to-guide on most car repairs. It could be worth visiting a mechanic afterwards simply to check that your work is up to standard, most mechanics will be able to check over your vehicle for free.

Take preventative measures

The temptation may be to only fix things that need immediate repairing. However, quite often you can save money in the long run by investing in preventative repairs. A worn brake pad could be causing you to apply more pressure on the brake pedal, putting more strain on other parts. It could be wear down your tyre too. Replace this part early and you could delay other parts having to be fixed. Preventative repairs may even prevent accidents in some cases.

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Keep fluids topped up

You’ll be amazed how many faults are the result of allowing fluid to run dry. Don’t wait until your oil levels are dangerously low – the oil keeps all your parts lubricated, stopping them from grinding against one another and prolonging their lifespan. Engine coolant, brake fluid, power steering fluid and washer fluid are other liquids to keep on top. Whilst obvious, you should also keep fuel regularly topped up. Try not to let your tank run almost to empty each time as you could be putting a greater strain on your engine.

Do you really need a hire car?

When getting your car repaired, consider whether you really need a hire car in the meantime. Car hire costs are usually very expensive. It could be worth going without a car for a couple weeks and catching a lift from a friend or using public transport. Be aware that some insurance policies may pay for a hire car.

Is it time to sell/scrap your vehicle?

There may come a point when you’ve spent too much on repairs and it’s time to call it quits and buy a new vehicle. You can sell damaged vehicles but must specify this damage – there may be some buyers who still want to take it off your hands and pay for the repairs. Alternatively, when it comes to serious damage, it may be better to simply scrap the vehicle. You’ll get a small amount of money for scrapping – it won’t be enough to pay for a new car but it will at least give you some money to put towards a new vehicle.  

40 Tips To Avoid (And Manage) Being In Debt

40 Tips To Avoid (And Manage) Being In Debt - debt prison image

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If you find yourself in debt, or are heading in that direction – it’s not a nice feeling. The stress of debt can have a huge impact on your daily life and how you live it.

Luckily, there are plenty of tips that you can add to your lifestyle that will prevent this from happening. Some may be better suited to you than others, so have a read through and see what works best for you.

  1. Use cash for all your purchases instead of your credit card. Leave that to pay for your house and your car.
  2. When you get paid every month, put away 60% of your earnings into a savings account, and keep the 40% to do with what you wish.
  3. Make a proper spreadsheet with all your monthly payments including your bills, grocery shopping, interest amounts, etc., and make a total of all your balance. Then you can see exactly what you owe, what you have, and what you need.

Update it every month as you start paying off more and more.

  1. Every time you get a little extra money coming in, put it into your emergency fund so you can use it to pay off debt.
  2. Speak to a credit counselor and look at websites like DebtSolutionsReviewed’s review for more information and advice. You may learn how to make a plan of action (and stick to it!)
  3. Don’t use your credit card to get through the next month’s paycheck. If you do this, you will just get further into debt.
  4. Don’t pay off too much of your debt at one time. Make sure that you still have enough for your weekly expenses without starving yourself.
  5. Don’t eat out in fancy restaurants, or order takeout. Cook your own meals with the food that’s in your cupboards, fridge, and freezer.
  6. If you’re bored, invite friends over or go to their house and entertain yourself that way. You don’t have to splash the cash on nights out to have fun.
  7. Don’t ever use your emergency account to pay off your credit cards – that defeats the whole point of having one. – Pretend like it’s not there.

 

  1. If you know you have expenses coming up in the near future, make a note of them on a calendar so you won’t be surprised when you need to pay for them.
  2. Give yourself a budget to live off every week. Try your best at paying the absolute minimum on everything you purchase, like the brand of chips you by – get the stores own instead.
  3. If you’re living with your other half, make sure you’re both on the same page when it comes to money.
  4. If you know you have bad spending habits, find a way to manage them. Don’t go cold turkey – that will most likely make you splurge even harder. Instead, give yourself a limit.
  5. Stay focused, no one said it was going to be easy. Paying off debt is very stressful, especially when you realize it isn’t going to happen overnight. But as long as you know that it won’t last forever, and pay attention to the number going down – you will get through it.

 

  1. Stop it! If you find a good enough excuse to buy the new iPhone, even if the phone you have now works perfectly fine, and you’re $30,000 in debt – question what your goal really is.
  2. If one technique isn’t working for you, don’t use that as an excuse to give up – find a new technique! There are so many out there.
  3. Change your behavior and attitude if you know that it is the thing causing you to overspend. One way to do this is to distract yourself by something other than spending – like playing music or working out.
  4. If you’ve been in debt for the last three years, be realistic when it comes to paying it all off. It will most likely take you longer than three years to pay it all back.
  5. Although you need to budget your lifestyle, it is still important to have a social life and get out of the house once in a while to decompress a little. You don’t want to end up not enjoying life just because of your financial situation.
  6. What is necessary? Do you need the sports channel? Do you need all that data on your cell phone? Do you have to buy the expensive brand of ice cream?

If it’s not a necessity – get rid of it for now. You’re just wasting precious money.

  1. Get creative when it comes to doing things around the house and in your personal life. If you feel like you need some new clothes for the summer for example, don’t go out and buy a new wardrobe, instead find creative ways to cut up and sew your clothes, turning them into something awesome.
  2. Don’t keep borrowing money – that’s how you got in this situation to begin with. Stop the credit cards, stop the car loans, stop the home equity lines, and so on. If you know you can’t afford something with the cash that you have in your wallet – you can’t afford it at all.
  3. If there’s something that you really want, save up the money like everyone has to do, and when you have it, buy it with cash. By the time you have actually saved up for what you wanted, it will feel so much more gratifying when you buy it. Or, you may not even want it anymore.
  4. Use an app or download a software specifically designed to track your spendings, and split everything up into different categories. Not only is this efficient, but it will make it easier to see where your problem areas are.
  5. Give yourself some wiggle room, as you never know what life is going to throw at you. Always be prepared for the minor setbacks.
  6. Unsubscribe from all the alerts and notifications you get sent about your favorite online stores. They will only persuade you to pay for things you don’t need – all while making you think it’s okay because it’s on offer. – Don’t fall for it.

 

  1. Downsize where you’re living. If it’s bigger than what you need, you may be paying more than you should, so move into somewhere smaller.
  2. Figure out what drives you to save up. This may be your children or your passion. Whatever it may be, think about that whenever times get hard to remind yourself of why you’re doing this.
  3. If you know you have a raise coming up, make a note of it and use all of the extra earnings to pay off your debt.
  4. Don’t see money as something that is for spending. For example, if you plan to buy a brand new flat screen tv, calculate how many hours it took you to work for the amount of money it is. You may realize that a tv isn’t worth all of that hard work you’ve been doing over the last few weeks.
  5. Learn about the alternatives instead of assuming that we have to pay the asking price – 90% of the time, it’s not the only option you have. Get a second-hand oven, shop at charity shops and cycle to work.
  6. Figure out whether you’re buying things because you actually need them, or if you’re just paying for them because everyone else is.
  7. Don’t think about your debt – think about your wealth. Don’t tell yourself you are trying to get out of debt. Instead, think of it as your current financial situation that is contributing to your overall wealth. Now you’ll see it as a positive, rather than a negative.
  8. Start by paying off the smallest debt first, that way you get the ball rolling, and it may be the ‘pick me up’ you need to show you that it is possible to do it.

 

  1. Understand that you will have to make sacrifices if you want to pay your debt off – it’s just part of the game. As long as you’re willing to do so, you will get through it.
  2. Write yourself a note that says “DO I ABSOLUTELY NEEEEED THIS???!!!!! And stick it in your wallet next to your cash.
  3. Get supermarket fliers with all the offers on, and use that to plan your weekly grocery shop. Look at all the things that are on promotion, and use them to make your meals.
  4. Plant seeds in your garden and use them to grow your own tomatoes, peas, potatoes, herbs and more. You will, in time, be able to use what you have to live a sustainable life. If you don’t have a garden, you can keep some pots by your windowsill in the kitchen.
  5. Just think about the feeling you will get when you have paid everything off. – Freedom! Just imagine it.

 

So as you can see, there are tons of tips and tricks to avoid, (or manage) being in debt. Put as many in use as you can, and see what works best for you. Keep trying until you find your ‘way’.

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/

Ways to Save on Daily Expenditure

Ways To Save on Daily Expenditure

Saving money is something that everyone could agree is a good idea. While not everyone has to rub pennies together to get by, a tighter budget might not necessarily be such a bad thing. There are many people who have seen the benefits of making their money stretch a little farther. If this is something that you too are interested in, you can find five quick tips to help you limit your spending without limiting yourself.

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Cut Out The Extras

You might be able to save quite a lot of money just from limiting the areas that are high cost with low usage. A great example of this would be your home phone (landline). It is easy to get caught in an idea that having a landline is great for emergency situations or to limit the use of your cell phone while you are at home. But given that nearly all wireless plans are now offering unlimited minutes for even the most basic of packages, you are adding an unnecessary bill each and every month.

Energy Efficiency

While it is certainly a noble effort to “go green” for the environment’s sake, being energy efficient for your wallet’s sake might inspire you a little bit more. There are a few ways that you can help cut your costs, and subsequent energy consumption.

  • Make sure that all of your windows and doors are sealed properly. Drafts through any season cost you money, as they require either your air conditioner or your furnace to work more than it should have to in providing the ideal temperature you have selected.
  • Ensure that your electronics are not just turned off, but completely unplugged if they are not being used for a while. Even something as simple as a phone charger can draw a lot of energy throughout a month just from being plugged in.
  • Cut your thermostat down a few degrees. A simple change like this could spell big savings for you, even if you have to wear a sweater some of the chilly nights.

Shop Around Online

The internet is a vast marketplace and a plethora of information. When you are utilizing the latter, you should appreciate the simplicity of your shopping experience and take full advantage of your ability to instantly shop around. Some websites are big on competitive pricing, without skimping on the quality of the products they offer, from foods, clothes, hobbies, entertainment, office supplies, home improvement and even travel, a vast choice for wants and needs are offered. A few great examples would be www.tkmaxx.com, www.sportsdirect.com and Glasses Direct. If you combine quality eCommerce experiences like these with the use of promo codes and coupons then you can really see some big savings.

Use Coupons and Price Matching

Printable coupons to use in physical stores are kind of dying out, but it isn’t gone completely yet. So as it stands right now, this is a suitable means of saving money. The trend that is taking over physical retail locations now is price matching, which most of the major stores are doing in an effort to stay competitive and promote customer loyalty. You only need to show your cashier a competitor ad featuring a cheaper price on the product you are buying, and you get it for that rate. It’s simple and it keeps you from having to drive all over town hunting good deals.

Consolidate Your Car Trips

The last point goes directly into the next way that you can save money on a tighter budget, and that is through consolidating your errands into a single trip when possible. You might not live all that far away from your local grocer, but that little bit of gas really will add up quickly when you are making several trips a week. Stock up, plan ahead, and consider all of the things that you need to do and attempt to make those all happen with as little wasted gasoline as possible.

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These are five quick tips (that are really easy to do) that can have you saving money this month. With just a few changes to your routine, and a few minor changes to your life, you can make a tight budget not feel quite so limiting.