Personal finance is difficult to pay attention to if you think that saving some of your money is going to deprive you of something you really want. Unlike other personal finance tips, the following are painless ways to save a little bit more of your money without feeling like you have to deprive yourself in order to save.
Pack one suitcase inside of another. Almost every traveler comes home with more stuff than they left with. Whether souvenirs for friends and family or a shopping trip to take advantage of a good exchange rate, it can be difficult to get everything back home. Consider packing your belongings in a small suitcase, then put that suitcase into a larger one. This way you only pay for one bag on your trip out, and have the convenience of bringing two back when you return.
Avoid thinking that you cannot afford to save up for an emergency fund because you barely have enough to meet daily expenses. The truth is that you cannot afford not to have one. An emergency fund can save you if you ever lose your current source of income. Even saving a little every month for emergencies can add up to a helpful amount when you need it.
If you live close to work, consider biking or walking to reduce gas expenditure, which will improve your personal finances a little. With fuel prices on the continuous rise, anytime that you can avoid using the car you will save. While some trips are necessary in the car, the shorter routes you can walk are often the ones you have the most stop and go. Cut the car out of the equation on these and watch your balance rise.
Make big purchases a goal. Instead of putting a large item purchase on a credit card and paying for it later, make it a goal for the future. Start putting aside money each week until you have saved enough to buy it outright. You will appreciate the purchase more, and not be drowning in debt because of it.
To save on college costs, strongly consider enrollment at a local community college for the first two years and then transfer to a four-year institution for your last two years. With annual tuition cost savings of 50% or more over traditional four-year universities, going to a community college for your first two years can make a whole lot of sense. Many community colleges have direct transfer programs to four-year institutions that ensure the relevance of the credits you have earned towards your degree. You will get the exact same diploma and credentials at the end of the four years, as your classmates who attended the four-year university straight-through, but your costs (and possible debt) will be so much less.
A sale at the grocery store is not a good deal if you buy more than you can use. Groceries go bad relatively quickly and buying more than you can realistically use is foolish. Do not go overboard, then you will be able to enjoy a sale.
When you have to go to the store, try to walk or ride your bike there. It’ll save you money two fold. You won’t have to pay high gas prices to keep refilling your car, for one. Also, while you’re at the store, you’ll know you have to carry whatever you buy home and it’ll keep you from buying things you don’t need.
Use a flexible spending account. Flexible spending accounts can help reduce your medical or childcare expenses. These accounts let you set aside a specific amount of pretax dollars for these expenses. Consult a tax professional to find out what kind of expenses qualify for this account.
If one is looking for an easy and profitable way to get some extra money they might want to consider selling bottles of water. Cases of water can be bought at very reasonable prices and one can then sell individual bottles of water for low prices such as a dollar and make a surprising amount if selling in the right locations.
The above tips illustrate lots of little ways we can each save money without making ourselves feel like we are deprived. Many times people don’t stick with things that make them feel deprived so these tips should help individuals save for the long term rather than just saving some money in crisis moments.