I think budgeting needs to be taught at a much younger age, so that a person has time to really grasp it before it`s become necessary to life.
It would have helped me in my earlier adult years than many other things I learned in middle school and high school.
I`ve met a lot of people in my life who don`t have, or follow a budget, and I think every individual knows best for themselves. Personally, I do budget things, and I do follow a budget on a regular basis.
I`m very discipline and strict with money, but I`ve also been paying for my younger adult spending mishaps for quite some time.
Throughout life, there have been many times when my husband and I need to `tighten up our budget` as I call it, simply meaning to not spend any more than needed.
Needs of course change, but during the times when we`re looking to cut back on expenses, our needs shift.
We start meal planning to save on groceries and we buy ONLY what we need when we grocery shop.
Having a plan/list BEFORE you grocery shop can save you a lot of money, and it takes a lot of the `guess-work` out of the shopping. Meal planning can definitely take up a chunk of your time, and I have heard that this is why many don`t do it, but if you CAN find the time, meal planning is usually very beneficial.
Buy IN-SEASON produce is another way to save on groceries.
When you buy IN-SEASON, they tend to be less expensive. In Canada, in-season produce in October includes, cranberries, apples, pears, cabbage, carrots, cauliflower, pumpkin, potatoes, and much more. Find a larger list over here.
Look closely at your cell-phone bill next time you receive it.
This can be another way to save money. In the past I have found charges that didn`t make sense, and didn`t belong there. I have also found things that I was being charged for that I really had no need for. For example, extensive long distance plans, internet usage, etc.) Understanding exactly what you are paying for can be very eye-opening and help you see where you can save money.
Cable is another area that you can change/cancel in order to save money.
You can look into different plans and service providers, or you can just cut it out of your budget completely.
Internet is something that I do find would be difficult to live without, but the cost of it is ASTOUNDING. When we have to save some money, we have down-graded our plan, but then of course our wireless devices slow down, so that one we try to not do.
Another area to save money in is hydro/heat. Making it a habit to turn lights off that you don`t need on, and unplugging appliances when they are not being used are simply ways to cut costs. You can also lower your thermostat even just 1-2 degrees and use an extra blanket to see a difference in your heating costs.
Collect rain water from eavestroughs to use to water your lawn and gardens.
Doing this can save you money on your water bill.
Cover your windows and check your door cracks for drafts. Doing this can help keep the warm air inside, saving you on heating costs.
If you are able, buy what you actually want, rather than buying 10 bottles of something cheaper in hopes of finding one that works.
Buy the stuff that works for you, your hair, your body, etc, so that you don`t need to continously be trying new products. While it may seem to cost more up front, it will save you in the longer run.
Checking your account statement for automatic debits can be a great way to understand where your money is going.
Doing this can help you narrow doing which expenses can be eliminated. For example, magazine subscriptions, gym memberships, box subscriptions, etc.
Look at your bank account and what type you have.
If you are paying for depositing cheques every month, and that is not a feature you need, then maybe look into changing account types. From my experience some account packages charge for e-transfers, deposits, withdrawals, etc. Make sure you aren`t paying for a whole bunch of features you don`t ever use.
Be cautious of all the extra coffees you purchase as well.
All those small expenses add up, and they can lead to total that is very surprising.
Though I`ve never gotten into couponing, I`ve read and heard that many people save a ton of money doing this. It`s been on my list of things to learn for a long time.
Shopping second-hand can save you money too.
You can often find clothes, toys, books, etc. This is better for your wallet and for the world.
Making money is hard, and keeping it is even harder.
Life costs a lot of money, and it constantly feels like you can`t get ahead, or at least that`s how it feels for me.
I`ve made plenty of mistakes, and I`ve learnt so much. These are just a few tips I`ve picked up along the way.
What are your best money-saving tips?
Love Always N
P.S. – Did you read yesterdays` post when I wrote about autumn poetry that I love?