Things don’t always go according to plan financially. No matter how carefully you save, there’s always a chance that you could find yourself facing trouble if you suddenly lose your job or have to pay for a massive repair.
If you didn’t have a great deal of cash to put aside for extra expenses, to begin with, you might be wondering how you can save even more money when times are particularly tough. The good news is that it isn’t impossible – you simply need to think about how you can make a few careful compromises.
In this article, we’ll be looking at a few of the ways you can turn up your saving strategy when money is tight.
1. Start with your Food Bill
One of the biggest areas most of us over-spend on is food. It’s easy to get carried away buying enough food for the whole family, and we tell ourselves that it’s okay to spend money in this area because food is essential. However, most of the time, you probably find yourself throwing tins and packages away that you never had a chance to use.
A good way to ensure that you stop over-spending and wasting excess food is to create a list of meals that you plan on eating throughout the week. If you know exactly what you’re going to eat every day, you can go to the supermarket knowing which ingredients you need. Remember, when you’re buying those items, stick to the own-brand stuff and avoid the popular labels.
2. Change Your Entertainment Strategy
There are countless people throughout the US today that pay every month for a package that includes television channels, telephone calls, and the Internet. If you’re one of those people, ask yourself how much of that package you actually use.
If you prefer to stream your television on Netflix and make calls through your cell phone, then you could be wasting a lot of extra cash each month. Consider getting rid of the “added extras” on your plan and simply focusing on your broadband instead. You can always add channels back later if you end up with extra cash.
3. Take Advantage of Deals
Are you a truly savvy spender? In other words, do you make sure that you compare prices online before you commit to any single deal? There are plenty of ways that you can cut costs if you’re willing to put a little more time into your product and service research.
Every time you’re about to make a purchase, take some time to check online for voucher or coupon codes first. If you’re shopping in-person, you can use your smartphone to compare the price of the product you want to buy in that store with prices elsewhere. You can also try following some of your favorite brands on social media for exclusive deals and sales. You’ll be saving extra in no time.
4. Compare Everything
While you’re using the internet to check for vouchers, codes, and upcoming sales, why not see whether you can get a better deal on monthly expenses by simply switching to a different vendor? You’d be surprised how many people stick with the same insurance provider year after year out of convenience alone.
These days, you compare the price of almost anything, including your loans. Comparing loan deals before you commit to getting capital from a single provider ensures that you get the best APR rate. The less you have to pay on interest each month, the more money you’ll have to spend elsewhere.
5. Cut Back Everywhere a Little Bit at a Time
When times are tough, and you’re looking for sources of extra cash, finding enough money for what you need in any one category can seem impossible. You might not be able to reduce your monthly food expenses by $100 straight away, but you could potentially cut back by $20, and then take another $20 out of your entertainment costs too.
Instead of trying to fix everything in one chunk, commit yourself to make small changes a little bit at a time. Not only will this be much easier, but you’ll also find that you have an easier time maintaining your budget changes after you’ve finished dealing with the event that caused you to start re-thinking your budget in the first place. If you don’t revert back to your old spending habits, you could end up with more cash to put into your savings instead!