If your family is like most families, there is never enough money at the end of the month to put into savings. Nothing feels better than watching that savings grow over time, but if you are currently feeling the burden of the less-than-ideal current economy then it probably feels like there is just enough money to live paycheck to paycheck. If you want to be able to afford vacations, medical bills, education and eventually retirement then you will need to take a closer look at your finances sooner rather than later.
If you follow any or all of these six suggestions, you will begin to notice a bit more leftover after each paycheck that you can tuck away in your savings account. Take half the savings and put them into your savings account before you pay other bills, paying yourself first.
This method ensures you save money, every month. Now we will identify things in your current lifestyle that can easily reduce expenses. With half of the cash put into a savings account, you take the other half to pay down on credit card debt. Since these savings are money you are already spending each month, your saving program should be painless.
Money Saving Idea One – Cut Down the Amount of Meals You Dine Out by Half
Regardless of how many or how few meals you eat out, commit to cutting that number in half. If you are also looking to stay fit, lose or even maintain your current weight, eating lightly at home will be good for health as well as your finances. Regardless of how you do it, cutting your meals eaten out in half will put cash in your pocket for your savings plan.
Money Saving Idea Two – Grow Your Own Vegetables
Take part of your backyard and convert it into a vegetable garden. Take organic waste from the kitchen and start a compost pile to use as fertilizer. Even if your thumb is far from green, you will have more produce than you can eat. It’s a great hobby to get into a will help put healthy, fresh food on the table.
Money Saving Idea Three – Cook in Volume and Freeze Excess
Cut your trips to the grocery store in half and try to make it no more than twice a month. Cook casseroles and other great dishes, keeping two days’ worth in the fridge and freezing the rest in meal size packets for the future. This is one way to save excess vegetables from your garden. You also won’t have to deal with buying produce and other perishables and seeing them go to waste before you can get to them.
Money Saving Idea Four – Cancel Cable and Land Line Telephones – Keep Internet
Watch movies streaming on the Internet and use VOIP phone services for free, or keep your cell phone and get a group discount on basic phone services. While this may not be ideal for avid TV watchers, it is in fact an expense you can live without.
Money Saving Idea Five – Use the Public Library
Get your fix of magazines, books and even DVD’s at the local public library. Why not, you already pay for it with your taxes? This will help cut down entertainment costs even further, and without having cable at the house, it might be nice to get out and read a book!
Money Saving Idea Six – Rent out a Room in Your Home
This instant extra cash can go direct into your savings account. Of course this may not be the ideal situation for everyone, but if you are located in a city where rent can be expensive and you have extra space, it might work out well to rent it out. Just of course be selective when it comes to choosing a tenant.
About the Author: Sam is a financial blogger and has learned most of what he writes about form personal experience. Over the years of his life he has had financial highs and lows and has even turned to Wonga.com to help make ends meet. He has now effectively been able to cut down his expenses and has started putting money aside for retirement.