The new year is fast approaching and you may have made some resolutions where your finances are concerned. I know I have. Although 2012 was a relatively frugal year for me, I know there were a lot more corners I could have cut and things I could have done without.
With this in mind, I decided to share five tips for saving more green in 2013. Each is a suggestion that I plan on putting to good use myself. If you have some money saving tips that you want to share with our readers, feel free to comment on this post.
Here are a few ways to help you keep more money in your bank account:
- Use a website like Mint.com to see where every dollar you make is going. Despite every attempt to stick to my budget, charges still manage to creep up on me from time to time. I plan on using the free tools available from Mint.com to keep an eagle eye on my finances. I like the site because it also has an app which gives you 24 hour access to your account.
- Come up with a list of items that you will eventually need in the future and start shopping for them now. Don’t wait until your washer finally gives out or your best pair of jeans gets a hole in them. Start looking for sales now while you have the option to buy used or at least deeply discounted. This will allow you to get the most bang from your buck. Search yard sales, thrift stores, dent and scratch stores, consignment shops, and auctions for the things you need. Keep a list of your spouse’s and children’s sizes so you can pick up items as you find them.
- Stop living paycheck to paycheck. This is often easier said than done. Instead of spending every penny of your earnings, automatically get into the habit of saving. Pay yourself first even if it’s only $20. Put the money away for a rainy day and forget about it. After getting into this practice, you’ll see a considerable difference in how you spend. You’ll want to save more so you’ll find yourself weighing every purchase to determine its importance in your life.
- Keep holidays and celebrations under control. Birthdays, anniversaries, and holidays can add up if you have a large family and circle of friends. Rather than go all out each and every time there’s something to celebrate, decide ahead of time how much you plan to spend and what type of arrangements you need to make. Consult websites like Pinterest.com and Craftster.org for inspiration. A lot of gifts, decorations, and favors can be made by hand. Don’t forget to check out our list of Birthday Freebies. The gift of a free meal out is one that many people appreciate.
- Invest in yourself. Check out books from the library or download free ebooks online that teach you a new skill. Sign up for free workshops, classes, and seminars online and in your community. Become a sponge. Soak up knowledge wherever you go. You never know when these skills will be useful.
Start the new year out right with more money in your pocket. Put these five tips to use and start saving big. Your budget will go a lot further with a little thought and advance preparation.
Charissa is into frugal living and saving money.