We all need to save money these days. Whether you are saving with a specific aim or goal in mind or you just want to be smarter with your money, there are many different ways that you can positively impact on your finances. If you are struggling to get started when it comes to finances, you will find that you can save money with these smart tips.
Use cash instead
In the modern world, there are many ways in which you can buy items or pay for services and you no longer need to have cash in your wallet or your pocket. Contactless payment options make it easier than ever before to buy items, which is good because it is convenient but is it really the best option for you if you are looking to save money?
If you don’t stop to hand over cash, you probably don’t recognise the money being spent as much as you would if there was a physical hand over of the money. There will no doubt be studies taking place which prove that people who use cards or pay in a contactless fashion don’t psychologically consider themselves as spending money in the same manner that they would if they were handing money over.
If you have the option, take cash out and then make sure that you only use cash for your purchases and you should find that you keep a closer eye on your spending when you do.
List and record everything
The reason that use cash gives you a better chance of saving money is that you see what you are spending and this will help you to be better informed on your spending, which means you can stick to your limits more easily.
In this modern day and age, it may be difficult for some people to only use cash, so if you are going to use your card or contactless payment options, record everything you spend money on. You will find that recording your transactions, on a sheet of paper on a spreadsheet, reinforces what you are spending and this will help you to keep on track with what you are spending.
One of the problems is that many people don’t actually realise how much money they spend or what level of money drips from their account. When you have everything in front of you in black and white, you may be a little bit shocked about your spending, and this is a great reason to record everything that you spend money on.
Review your bank account
Of course, you don’t have to physically hand over cash or make a transaction to spend money, you may have Direct Debits or Standing Orders on your account that means money leaves your account on a very regular basis. If you are getting the benefit of these payments, by all means, stick with them. However, we often sign up for accounts and then stop using them or we stop getting the true benefits from them.
If you have DDs or SOs on your bank account that you don’t use or get the benefit from, stop them. If you have a gym membership but no longer go, either start going or stop the payments. If you sponsor a wildlife animal, either commit to enjoying the help you provide or stop the payments.
Taking the time to review your account will give you a starting point in being more in control of your finances.
Aside from this, there are many other ways you can save money, and a lot of what you can do depends on your lifestyle and what you currently do. If you buy a coffee every morning and then pick up lunch, this is a lot of money being spent each week. If you can cut down your habit and have home-made coffee or food a few days a week, you’ll make a small saving each week and over the course of a year, you’ll make a good sized saving. If you can apply this thinking to a number of different aspects, you should find that you can positively impact on your finances.
There will be times when a helping hand dealing with bills or a one-off payment is of benefit but on the whole, you want to take greater control of your finances. If you do this, you will be well on your way to being smarter with money.
The first step in moving forward with your finances comes with being proactive, so think about your finances and start taking action.
Author Bio: Andrew Reilly is a freelance writer with a focus on news stories and consumer interest articles. He has been writing professionally for 9 years but has been writing for as long as he can care to remember. When Andrew isn’t sat behind a laptop or researching a story, he will be found watching a gig or a game of football.