It’s time to talk about everybody’s favorite subject on the planet – money. It’s not even fun to think about sometimes, am I right? Setting a budget can be hard, and keeping your budget can be even harder. Especially when life keeps getting more and more expensive, but you’re not making any more money.
A few months ago I decided to sign up for a Mint account and it was such a great decision. Actually, it was kinda terrible at first because once you connect your accounts and credit cards, you have to go through and categorize your transactions and that was… not very fun. It was very eye opening. And very not fun. Turns out I was going to Chick-Fil-A way more often than I realized, haha! But once I saw what my spending looked like and set a realistic budget, I was excited and motivated to save save SAVE!
I made a list of practical ways that I could save money to meet my financial goals, and I wanted to share some of the easiest ones with you all!
BRING YOUR LUNCH! There is nothing more expensive that buying your lunch at work. Especially if you work downtown in a big city and don’t drive to work, so your only food options are the expensive ones you can walk to. It really adds up to spend $10-15 every day just for lunch alone, so bring it as often as you can!
COOK AT HOME! The same thing goes for dinner – it really adds up with you just hit the drive thru on the way home. You might not think about it, but the cost certainly adds up. Cooking at home is such an easy way to save (and probably eat a lot healthier, too!)
GIVE UP CABLE! This might be a hard one for some people, but giving up cable can save a ton of money every month. Most of the shows you’re wanting to watch are probably available to view online.
GIVE UP NETFLIX! Why not take it a step further?!? Giving up your streaming service can save you an extra $10-ish a month and that can really add up in a positive way! Plus all the movies and TV shows can be rented for free at your local library!
RENT BOOKS! Speaking of the library… it’s so awesome!! Renting books instead of buying them new will save so much money if you’re a big reader! I can even put my name on waiting lists for books that are about to be released, so I can still read them right away!
SIGN UP FOR EMAILS! For the discounts, duh. If you are going to be shopping, you might as well be saving while doing it.
WORKOUT AT HOME! There are so many awesome boutique fitness places out there, and they are so expensive. SO expensive. Even the run-of-the-mill gyms can cost a lot every month. There are so many great fitness resources online and most of them are either completely free or pretty cheap!
SKIP STARBUCKS! This one might be hard for you, especially since it’s PSL season and all, but it is so much cheaper to make your coffee at home or wait till you get to work! Thankfully my office provides free coffee and there are tons of flavors to choose from. That wasn’t the case at my last office, and I definitely spent a pretty penny at Starbucks.
DRINK MORE WATER! This is great because not only will you be more hydrated, but you will also be saving money! Not buying soda or alcohol to drink at home will make your grocery bill a lot cheaper, and not drinking soda or especially not drinking alcohol while out to dinner will make your bill SIGNIFICANTLY cheaper.
SIGN UP FOR MINT! Or a similar service! Seriously – it has been so helpful to keep a detailed track of my spending and where I can be saving more each month. You’ll thank me, I promise!