If you’re like me, you’re always looking for a way to put a little extra money aside. Especially since the current crisis, inflation and rising prices make it a great idea: but where do you start to save money quickly? And, even better, how do you build an emergency fund (i.e., save money for a rainy day)? Want to know how to save money smartly on a daily basis? Did you know that there are simple tips to save money easily? And we don’t necessarily think about it… How -LEVMAG has selected 44 tips that will finally allow you to reduce your expenses and save money.
Ground rules Keep your yellow coins. Here’s a great little calculation:
set aside $2 every day.
In a single year, that’s almost 40% of a $3500 emergency fund! It’s a great way to put money away, without too much strain.
Monitor your purchases
At least once a month, take the time to sit down and carefully review your bank statements. Analyze all your purchases to see if they are REALLY necessary. Then ask yourself, “Were all these purchases really necessary? Or could some of them have gone into an emergency fund?”
Wait 2 days before making a major purchase.
To prevent shopping for useless things, wait 48 hours before making the purchase. This is a good tip to avoid having regrets. And, instead of making a useless purchase, why not add to an emergency fund?
Prevent credit card fees.
If you use a credit card, limit your purchases to what you can pay off by the end of the month. This prevents you from having to pay exorbitant interest rates. If you use a bank card, your bank will probably allow you to have an overdraft. It’s convenient for emergency purposes, of course. But get out of the bad habit of depending on that overdraft. It will prevent you from paying agios. These fees are preventable and would be better spent on an emergency fund, right?
Create a budget.
Looking for an effective way to budget? Here’s how: save ALL your receipts for 1 full month. At the end of the month, analyze your purchases. This will give you an immediate overview of your purchases! And you’ll be able to save money on your budget more easily.
Go to the dentist regularly.
Personally, I go to the dentist twice a year, for simple scaling and cleaning of my teeth. These regular visits provide an early warning of cavities and prevent more expensive treatment. Indeed, a crown is not cheap!
Watch your purchases.
Most people don’t watch their purchases at all. The result? Well, they spend more than their budget provides. Ouch! Here’s the solution to keeping a close eye on your purchases: simple envelopes! Set a budget for each of your purchases: transportation, shopping, entertainment, etc. Then put the money you need for each purchase into envelopes. This is a safe and practical way to prevent overspending! Plus, it provides a way to save the money you haven’t spent at the end of the month. This method provides maximum savings.
Assess whether you can afford a purchase.
Here’s a great way to determine if you can really afford a “treat”. Set aside the amount of money you usually spend on a small pleasure. Case in point: you buy something you enjoy (1 pack of cigarettes, 1 bottle of wine, or 1 pack of beer). Put aside (in a jar, for example) exactly the same amount of money you spent on this purchase. If you can’t afford the “jar amount”, chances are you can’t afford that nice bottle of Bordeaux you’ve been eyeing! Simple as that.
Price things in hourly wages.
Take the price of an item you are interested in and divide it by your hourly wage. For example, a pair of shoes costs $60 and you earn $ 10 per hour. Are those shoes really worth 6 long hours of your labor? That puts things in perspective right away, doesn’t it?
Focus on short-term savings.
You’re more likely to succeed in saving money if your goal is short-term. It makes sense: putting aside $10 a week immediately seems easier than putting aside $500 a year, right?
Shop in bulk on the Internet.
Many suppliers and online stores offer free shipping if the order exceeds a certain amount. Take advantage of this offer by ordering promo items and non-perishable items. It saves time AND money!
Take your coffee home.
Over the course of a year, the $2 paid each day for 1 espresso easily funds a $500 relief fund. Just take your coffee home!
Bring your lunch box to work.
A lunch bought at the canteen or during the lunch break costs $5 (and still…). Preparing a lunch box at home costs only $2.50. In 1 year, that easily creates a $500 emergency fund. The same goes for eating out: instead of purchasing $25 from a restaurant, preparing a small dish at home costs only $5. At that rate, that’s a $500 emergency fund EVERY MONTH!
Prepare a shopping list before you go to the supermarket.
The bottom line is to STICK to the list. People who prepare a shopping list (and stick to it) spend less than those who decide on the spot what to shop for at the supermarket. Over the course of a year, the savings can be counted in HUNDREDS of dollars!
Prevent bad checks and overdrafts.
20 to $30 fine for bad checks and overdrafts! The monthly savings on these fines are considerable. They provide almost complete funding for a $500 emergency fund.
Pay off your credit card payments on time.
Paying off your credit card installments prevents $30 to $40 in collection fees per month. Over the course of a year, that’s a large portion of a $500 emergency fund.
Withdraw money only at your bank’s ATMs.
Check with your bank – withdrawing money from another bank’s ATMs can cost you up to $3 per withdrawal. That’s up to $150 a year!
Make a comparison before renewing your insurance.
Before renewing your home or auto insurance, take the time to compare the market. Also, suggest to your insurer to increase the insurance premium (the insurance premium is the price that the policyholder has to pay in order to benefit from the insurance coverage in case of a claim). For example, if your premium is $100 and you increase it to $500, it will significantly reduce your monthly payments.
If your children are no longer dependent on you or if your spouse is employed, it is wise to re-evaluate your life insurance coverage. Typically, the savings on a more suitable life insurance policy can FULLY fund a $500 emergency fund.
Seriously consider getting rid of your credit insurance on a loan. Most borrowers don’t need credit insurance! Their financial assets are sufficient to protect them in case of death, disability, or unemployment. Eliminating this insurance can reduce financing rates by 3% – a savings of almost $1,000 on a $20,000, 4-year loan!
Transportation Have your car serviced on time.
Change the oil in your car’s engine regularly. Don’t forget to check your tire pressure. Over 1 year, these 2 maintenances can save up to 100 $ in fuel.
Compare fuel prices.
Take the time to compare fuel prices at gas stations in your city. Check your car’s owner’s manual to see what kind of gas you should use. Over time, you’ll save hundreds of dollars in fuel and repair costs.
When driving, prevent frequent acceleration and braking. In the long run, this saves you a bottom dollar in fuel and increases engine life.
Take a cab as little as possible.
Taking public transport instead of cabs saves €5 to €10 per trip. If you take a cab often, that’s a saving that FULLY finances your $ 500 emergency fund.
When planning a trip, it is bottom to consult specialized sites that compare airline prices for you. This can save you hundreds of $.
Don’t pay for space you don’t need.
Do you really need that extra square footage? Evaluate your space needs. Also, consider reorganizing your house or apartment to use less space. Sort out your home and keep only the essentials. This will provide you with less space to rent or shop – and save money!
Try to live within a reasonable distance of your workplace.
Of course, this isn’t easy for everyone. But if you can do it, you can save a lot of money on transportation costs. It is estimated that reducing your car trips by 5,000 km per year saves over $1,000!
Renegotiate your mortgage.
Renegotiation provides either a shorter loan term or lower repayment charges. One last piece of advice, don’t go directly to your banker. It is better to go and see a competitor and then ask your bank to align itself with the proposed conditions.
Choose service providers with caution.
Choose plumbers, locksmiths, carpenters, etc. recommended by your friends and family. Ask for an estimate before you sign for the service. Make sure that the estimate is at a price that is fixed in advance and that must not be exceeded. And most importantly: don’t pay in full until the work is completely finished (and you are happy with it, of course)!
Ask for an energy assessment of your home.
Ask your energy supplier for more information. It’s very likely that they will offer a home energy audit – for free! The assessment is a cost-effective way to reduce your energy consumption. The savings can be counted in HUNDREDS of $ per year! Of course, it may be that the assessment proposes more bottom investments. Remember that a return on investment in 3-5 years saves you a lot of money in the long run.
Protect your home from the elements.
Seal all holes and cracks in your home. These cracks lose warm air in the winter and cool air in the summer. Just stop by a home improvement store. The salespeople will be happy to advise you on what products to use – which are usually affordable.
Use your shutters.
The old-timers understood the purpose of shutters. And no, contrary to what my son says, they weren’t designed for sleeping in. It’s a very simple and effective way to save energy. In the summer, close the shutters to keep the house cool. In winter, open them to take advantage of the sun’s warmth (and close them at night to insulate the windows). These small actions can provide you with over $100 in annual savings.
Take advantage of sales in factory outlets.
Do you know factory outlets? They are also called brand centers. They sell the manufacturer’s products directly (but be careful, I’m talking about the big brands, here!) at unbeatable prices. Take the time to do a search to see if there are any in your area. The price difference is mind-blowing. Check out the tip here.
Shop for second-hand clothes.
I often stop by my local thrift store to check out the new arrivals. It’s definitely worth it. I’ve been known to find designer clothes in great condition and at a more than reasonable price. Check out the tip here.
Don’t overlook quality.
When evaluating a potential clothing purchase, don’t forget the quality criteria. A cheap shirt or coat is a bad buy if the item is going to be worn out after just one year. To evaluate the quality of the garment, look closely at the quality of the fabric, seams, and textile care labeling.
Pay attention to the cleaning purchases.
Do your own laundry and ironing. If your clothes need dry cleaning, take the time to compare prices at several dry cleaners. For example, a difference of $0.50 for a shirt represents as much as $100 if you do the math on a yearly basis.
Telephony Delete your fixed line.
Telephony has evolved enormously in recent years. As a result, many consumers do not realize that they are paying for packages that are no longer adapted to their needs. For example, are you still paying for a fixed line? What’s the use of it when mobile packages offer unlimited subscriptions for less than 20 $? Personally, I chose to receive all my calls on my mobile number. It makes my life easier AND it saves me my landline costs.
Look for cheap or free entertainment.
A quick search in a newspaper and on the web can pay off very quickly. In my area, I can enjoy theme parks, museums, art openings, movie theaters, and sporting events – all at great prices. It provides the family with a good time, without excessive purchases.
Cancel your satellite TV subscription.
Calculate your yearly satellite TV purchase. Compare this amount to the cost of renting 1 movie once a week. The savings are quite significant, aren’t they?
Borrow books from the media library.
Instead of shopping for your books, why not take advantage of your media library? Borrowing books and magazines can save you hundreds of dollars per year.
Family and friends
Plan gifts well in advance.
This should provide you with a gift that will really please the person you are giving it to. Not only is it less expensive, but it makes for a unique and thoughtful gift. And if your gift needs to be shopped, you’ll have more time to find a good deal if you plan your gifts ahead of time.
Set a spending limit for gifts in your family.
Before you give your brother or father a gift, agree with him on the maximum price you will purchase. This way, you both prevent too many purchases. This is a good idea for families on a tight budget.
Organize meals at home.
It’s always nice to get together for a meal with friends and family. But it doesn’t have to be at the expense of your wallet. Why meet at a restaurant? Instead, arrange a standard hostel for a fun and inexpensive atmosphere!
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