Transcript: 20+ Money-Saving Ideas
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Hello my friends! In today’s Career & Money video theme, I’ll share a bunch of ideas that will save you money.
20 of those ideas are in this video, 25 more are available exclusively for my beloved email subscribers. If you’re not getting my weekly email but would like to, you can sign up right now and get access to all the private content that’s been sent so far, so that includes the 25 money-saving tips that were emailed this morning.
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OK, so everyone knows that it's smart to save money. Many of us have difficulty doing it though, so here are 20 tips:
#1. Always over-estimate your expenses — this is something I do consistently. If a bill might be 120, I estimate and plan as if it would be 130. I budget accordingly and when I have money leftover, I stash that money away. Never over-estimate the income though; if nothing else, under-estimate it. Under-estimate the income, over-estimate the expenses.
#2. Know your budgets. I’ve created an excel spreadsheet that outlines all of my bills and expenses, how much they amount to and when they’re due. Then I know what I have to work with for the month. Many times we spend out of ignorance, because we don’t know exactly how much we have available to spend.
#3. On a piece of cardboard or a board, create a debt-tracking bar. On one end you have the amount of debt you currently have, that’s your staring point, and on the other end you have 0 aka being debt-free. This is a great visual reminder of why you want to save money and it will serve as an incentive to be smarter with your money on a consistent basis. Each time you pay down a little bit of your debt with money that you’ve saved, fill in closer toward the 0.
#4. Instead of spending it, save your loose change. I typically end up with about $300 in loose coins at the end of the year. Make sure that you don’t get to that money before year end though. One of my girlfriends uses a piggy bank that she glues shut so she’s not tempted to open it and get money out. An alternative would be to deposit that money into the bank at the end of every week.
#5. A trick I do, is whenever I pay in cash, every time I get a $5 bill back, I stash it away. Ones are harder because you kinda need the change, so I found that 5 works best. Adapt this idea to fit your lifestyle and currency, but I promise you’ll see results.
#6. Keep track of your spending. I use an app called toshl finance, I mentioned it in one of my January videos, but I’ll link it again for you below (please see here). In a nutshell, every time I buy something, I log it in. We can make weekly small purchases that we think are insignificant, but that add up at the end of the month and then we wonder where our money went. With this app I can also add the budget that I have a month for spending, so after every purchase I can see in a second how much money I have left for the rest of the month, so there’s no margin for error. I’ll know if I can afford to buy something or not.
Use finance apps, keep your receipts or use notebooks for hand-written logs – whatever works, just keep track of your spending. You may be surprised to find out how much money you spend on purchases that are not necessary + you’ll avoid buying things you don’t need, and that money that you save on unnecessary purchases can go toward savings.
#7. If you want to buy something, take the price of that item and compare it to how much money you make an hour. So if you make let’s say $15 an hour and want to buy shoes that are 100 bucks, ask yourself if that purchase is worth almost 7 hours of work. They may or may not be worth it, but if you do that ever time with every purchase impulse, you’ll develop financially conscious habits that will help keep spending in perspective.
#8. Success comes in the form of short-term savings goals. In other words, you’ll be far more successful focusing on saving $20 per week as opposed to $1,080 per year. You can even feel the difference between the two, right? Your success rate will increase if you approach saving in smaller increments.
#9. Bring lunch to work. If buying lunch costs $7, but making lunch at home costs $3, then if you bring lunch a few times a week, in a year, you could have over $500 saved up just from lunch money.
#10. Eat out fewer times each month. Same concept. If it costs you $25 to eat out, but only $5 to eat in, then the $20 you save each time you stay in per month, will yield hundreds in savings at the end of the year, and that’s just from staying in a couple of times a month that you’d normally go out. You have to make sure you stash that money right away though, so you don’t end up spending it on something else you don’t need.
#11. Another budgeting idea is to only bring cash with you at the restaurant. It’s a gutsy move, but if you want to see savings, you gotta get aggressive. Know exactly how much cash you have, factor in the taxes and the tip as well, and then order accordingly. I think that’s a great tip, because it’s easy to get carried away at restaurants and order extra drinks and stuff. This keeps us in check.
Also, you can invite friends over instead of going out. You’ll save money every time you do that. Have a cookout or a potluck at the house, listen to music, play some games, you can make it fun!
Now, if you hang out with friends that typically piss money away, I recommend not only formulating a list of pre-thought-out excuses as to why you can’t go out, but also rethinking your circle of friends.
#12. Keep up-to-speed with the community events. Most towns and cities have online event calendars listing upcoming events in the area. Keeping an eye out on that calendar could help you enjoy free or discounted events.
#13. Don’t laugh, but another thing I used to do when I was single and was going out a lot, I used to occasionally bring with me a mini flask. Some places charge $15 for a drink. So I used to pay for a club soda then spike it myself. Disclaimer!!! NEVER drink and drive, EVER!
#14. When shopping for food, always go with a list of things you need and stick to it. Going in without a scope leads to unnecessary spending. Typically, people with shopping lists will spend less money than those who go without one. Multiply that by the amount of times you go grocery shopping in one month and you’ll see significant savings each year that can be in the hundreds.
#15. Ask your physician to consider prescribing generic drugs. I’ve worked in the healthcare industry before and learned that as long as the active ingredients are the same in the pharmacy brand as opposed to the big name brand, the only significant difference is the price you pay for marketing. Typically, store brand medications can cost anywhere between 20-40% less than the brands and that can result in hundreds saved.
It’s also important to find the most affordable place to purchase prescription drugs as well. So check out not only your local pharmacy but supermarkets, discount centers and mail-order pharmacies as well. Here in the US, Costco and Walmart are great options.
#16. Keep your car engine tuned and the tires at the proper pressure. Doing these 2 things will save you money in gas.
Keeping the air filter clean in the car can also improve gas mileage by as much as 10%. I linked an article to good housekeeping below, with tips on how to save money on gas. (please see here).
#17. Turn off the lights and TV when you're not around and be aware of “vampire” electronics that consume power even when turned off. So if you’re leaving for a couple of days unplug stuff, or use smart power strips, that cut electricity to devices in standby mode.
#18. Borrow books instead of purchasing them. In the email I sent the morning of this video launch I shared a service I found for swapping books, DVDs and music, that’s one good alternative to buying. You can also read magazines at local libraries too, so you don’t have to buy them. If you’re a consistent magazine reader, something simple like this can again, save you hundreds a year.
#19. Take advantage of YouTube for free exercise classes. YogaYak.com also offers free online yoga classes. Nike Training Club is an app that offers more than 100 different workouts created by their master trainers, etc. – things like that you can save money on gym memberships. All these resources by the way I’ve linked below, to make it easy. (please see here).
#20. Plan gift-giving in advance. That gives you time to not only think of thoughtful gift ideas, but also time to look for sales. Typically, right after a holiday, is the best time to discount shop.
For themed gifts, you can totally get them a year in advance. For example, you can get next year’s Mother’s Day gifts, cards and wrapping paper after this year’s Mother’s Day. Might seem silly, but when you do that throughout the year, the savings can be very significant.
It’s also not a bad idea to do some of your own DIY gifts. I have a Pinterest board with some ideas if you wanna check it out, it’s linked below (please see here), and you can also give the gift of a service instead of an actual item. For example, you can give a friend the gift of babysitting or pet sitting for one night, or week end. Sometimes a gift like that will be more needed and appreciated than any –thing- one could get.
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I love you for watching, good luck and all the best to you today and everyday, take care and I’ll see you soon!
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