Many people find it difficult to make savings these days. And that is completely understandable.
As of December, inflation was still rising at 3.4% annually. And many expenses, from housing to groceries, are still being raised. Since these aren’t expenses you can easily deduct — you’ve got to eat, and you need a roof over your head — it’s easy to see why your savings account balance might be stuck in the same place.
However, there are some steps you can take to be more successful in the savings department. Here are three to consider.
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1. Get on board with budgeting
Many people insist that they are Will. No. Budget. They say it’s hard, boring, time consuming…you name it. And really, if your financial situation is stable and you’re always saving money, then there’s no need to force yourself to stick to a budget if it’s not something you want to do.
But if your money-saving efforts aren’t panning out, try budgeting before writing the idea off completely. You may find that seeing your expenses mapped out for you and getting a better understanding of what your various bills entail will help you make better choices. .
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If you don’t want to use a budgeting spreadsheet, find a budgeting app that you’re comfortable using. You may find that the process is less annoying this way.
2. Join the gig economy
Committing to a side gig may not be something you want to do. But the great thing about the gig economy is that you don’t have to make a huge commitment. You can find a side job that is flexible and can easily fit into your schedule. And from there, you can work more when it’s possible, and stick to your main job when life gets busy.
Some gigs that can lend a lot of flexibility include:
- Sit at home
- Pet sitting
- Grocery delivery
- Rideshare Driving
- Data entry
- Telemarketing (yup, it’s still a thing)
Remember, any money you make from a side gig is extra. So if you have a month you can put in a couple of hours and bring home an extra $50 — well, it’s $50 more than before.
3. Reevaluate your entertainment spending
You tend to spend more money on wants than necessities, such as streaming services, takeout meals, and non-work attire. It’s totally OK to do this. If you work hard, you deserve to enjoy some of your earnings. But if you’re struggling to save money, think about the things you’re buying that aren’t considered necessities, and make sure they’re really worth it.
For example, you might pay $15 per month for a streaming service. But are you tired of it? Do you only watch it once a month? If that’s the case, it might be something to consider canceling.
Similarly, you can make a habit of dining at a high-end restaurant once a month with friends. If you care about the company but not so much about the food, why continue to blow $75 on a meal? Instead, suggest cheaper ways you can spend quality time together, like hosting a potluck dinner or meeting for a picnic lunch.
It’s hard to save money at a time when expenses are still high. But these tips may help give your savings the boost you’re looking for.
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