This is a guest post by Tina Roth, a financial blogger at ProFinance Blog. Check out her blog for some excellent financial information.
7 Surefire Saving Strategies to Follow in 2016
Surveys done on Americans have revealed that most of them lack the habit of saving. In a time when the economy is on the path of recovering, we should all learn how to lower spending and increase saving.
In this article, I’ll discuss some useful tips, which can lower your expenses and amplify your savings.
List daily spending
When aiming for this, you are bound to face a number of difficulties. The first is tracking your everyday spending. It’s not easy to list down how much money you are spending each day. The transport expenses, the grocery brill, shopping, leisure and entertainment activities all make up your daily spending worksheet. Use daily expenditure tracking apps to get an idea of daily outflow of money.
Cut down on it
Don’t overdo it. Use simple methods to reduce the money that’s going out of your wallet each day. For example, don’t drink expensive wine when cheaper alternatives are out there, and taste good too. Buy a Calvino Analog watch instead of a digital watch from Tommy Hilfiger.
Buy ramen noodles from your local Chinese market and steer them at home than to dine in an Italian restaurant. A consumer expert called Nicole Lapin offered a feasible solution. Her advice is to create a support group, so each can observe and monitor how another’s daily spending.
A lot of self-proclaimed experts suggest not using the credit or debit card. I am not saying you should dump them, but I am insisting you to use cash more. Simply put, don’t go on a cash-only mode, go on a cash-priority mode. All retail outlets in the country accept cash, but how many of us pay via cash? Very few. My advice, use a credit card only when you are running out of cash. Or else, cash.
Now what’s the benefit of using cash instead of cards? Firstly, your wallet will scream its lungs out when it’ll lose its weight and secondly, there will be less outstanding balance on your card.
Don’t just save
Interest rates on savings accounts have always been low in the United States. Hence, don’t expect your savings to lay eggs, which you could scramble and eat in the breakfast. For the same reason, don’t stash all the money in the deposit account. I advise you to look for avenues other than saving.
Investment is a viable option. You can invest in stocks. Stock market is not as complicated as it appears. For a start, you can check these stocks as they might yield a good return for you. Hence, the idea is to put your money to work, not simply stash it in the bank, which is not so productive.
Bargain before you buy
Among all the bad habits that we Americans have, one is buying without bargaining. Russell Peter, the standup comedian once said when a Chinese tries to sell something to an Indian, the bargain continues for an hour because the Chinese never stops pursuing and the Indian keeps asking for a lower price. The bottomline is negotiating with a seller can save you some bucks.
Having said that, if the stuff you are purchasing is of high quality, then don’t go for too much bargaining. A little of bit of negotiation is good, but overdoing it may not be so. Negotiation gets you the best value for your money.
Newfound money to debt
Eight out of ten people don’t know how to make use of newfound money. They spend it in just a few days. Don’t ever do that. Instead, relate any money that you were not expecting to your existing debt. When you pay down the debt by breaking your savings account, your savings get affected.
By connecting all money that’s outside of your monthly savings worksheet to your debt, you kill two birds in just one stone. The burden of debt gets reduced while your savings remains fully intact.
If you are in a 9 to 5 job, earning extra is difficult. But you can still make it possible. Be an insurance agent, work for part time, handle online data entry jobs. Very simply put, opportunities for earning extra are always there, you just have to find them.
As you earn extra, your savings swells and in turn, gives you a break from many worries, which are currently giving you trouble. Aside from that, when you earn extra, you acquire new skills, which benefit you in so many ways.
2016 is here
Charting out new strategies right in the beginning of the year helps you take a sigh of relief in the late quarters. So don’t delay it, start following all these strategies today onwards.
What do you think of the saving strategies shared here? Do you have any strategy of your own? Let us know by posting a comment below.
Tina Roth is the Founder and Editor of the ProFinanceBlog – a personal finance blog for people to explore more on frugal living and especially, to help craft a financial secure life. When she is not writing, you can find her busy with her kids and cooking.