Keep track of your money

The first and foremost money saving tip have to be this. Keeping track of all your outgoings and incomings is the first step of controlling your finances. Ask yourself these two simple questions, to begin with:

Do I know how much money is left at the end of the month in my account?

Do I know where all my money goes every month?

If you don’t know the answer to any one of these questions, you really need to get your finances in order. Hop on to a money saving mission with us.

In this day and age, we are not spending money in cash alone. There are many ways we are spending our money like debit cards, credit cards and online direct debits, so it is absolutely vital to have a digital tool that can capture all these spendings. It would be good to have all this information in one place. There are loads of self-help tracking tools available that can do this job for you. One such tool is this budget tracker. Take your last three months of spending and group them into large categories like food, housing, bills etc. You can also download free sample budget sheets that can be quite useful for beginners. Once you know where all your money is going, you will have an idea of the kind of money you are left or not left with at the end of the month.

Budget

Now that you know where all your money is going, you have to set yourself a budget. Is your money going where it is really supposed to go?  At this stage, you have to break down your expenses and argue with yourself.  Are all the outgoings sensible?

Can you still live well without a certain expense? It will be really difficult for you to decide, so you can also set up a priority list. A priority list is basically a list you create with all your expenses in the order of precedence. Anything that falls at the bottom of the list is something that you can get on without. This is a very tricky step and requires a lot of self-talk and motivation. It all boils down to ‘How desperately you want to take control of your life and start saving money?’ Once you have made your mind up, unsubscribe and make calls for ending direct debits straight away. You don’t want to change your mind, so it is important that you do it straight away.

Remind yourself

‘Just because you can buy it, doesn’t mean you should’

The greatest test of your life is now. Although you have budgeted and you know where to spend, the hardest part is sticking to it. It requires a lot of determination. You don’t have to keep talking o yourself all the time. There will be times when you are out at the mall and you like something, remind yourself of your budget and tell yourself that you will soon buy it but not now.

When you are out and about, develop a distaste for star bucks.I swear the amount of money that goes into buying coffee every year for some people is unbelievable.

One of the most important things to do when trying to stick with a budget is taking cash money out of the bank. Take the money out that you have set aside for spending. When you run out, you have no more to spend. Using bank cards, swiping and ever worse, tapping, just makes it easy for you to spend and difficult for you to save.

Don’t Waste

We sometimes develop weird habits of wasting stuff and end up spending more from our monthly budget. There are a lot of examples and I will just share a few to give you an idea.

Smoking

Buying brand names

Buying snacks at gas stations

Taking expiry dates too seriously

TV channel packages

Energy drinks

Saving old clothes

Not carrying plastic bags with you or a list

Buying pre-sliced fruits and vegetables

Can you think of any more?

Set a Savings Goal

Goals are important in life I don’t know how people can live without goals. Having a goal and setting down dates of accomplishment makes your mission more concrete. Having goals in life shows how independent and efficient you are. These also make those high mountains that you see ahead, look like little hills that are more trek-able. So, you must set yourself a money-saving goal for each month which is reasonable. It will all depend on how much you are likely to have left at the end of each month and how much are you planning to save at the end of the year. There are various calculators available for free online that you can use to set yourself a savings goal.

Read here for how to set life goals.

I always find this quote inspiring

“Once you really accept that spending money doesn’t equal happiness, you have half the battle won.” Ernest Callenbach

Seek help

You could be someone who is neck deep in debt and read this article to seek some advice.If you have already missed credit card deadline, find some free debt advice charities straight away. Please remember that these situations do come up sometimes in our lives where we do not see any solution. It is not the end of all. Let me assure you, there will always be ways to come out of it, maybe you cannot see it. Seek help so you can get professional advice.

The following link will take you to a website that locates free debt advice in your local area.

https://www.moneyadviceservice.org.uk/en/tools/debt-advice-locator

 

 

About The Author

mm

A Science Teacher in a Mainstream School in the U.K | MCA | B.Sc (Physics) | PGCE (QTS) |A Writer and Blogger

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