We all know saving money is one of the best things you can do for your future, but that doesn’t make it easy. If you’re one of those people who never actually manages to put any money away, it’s time to reconsider your financial approach.
Saving money is possible, but you have to be committed and prepared to make small sacrifices or simple swaps for the greater good. You just need to reevaluate your spending habits, plan your budget, and get to know your bank accounts inside out.
We’ve pulled together some top tips to get you started. Now, all you need to do is work out what you’re saving up for.
Avoid unnecessary expenses by minimising daily spending on things like artisan coffees, weekly takeaways or buying new clothes. There’s no need to go cold turkey and eliminate all the fun out of your life, you can be financially savvy about certain things. Whether it’s trading takeaways for fakeaways or bagging a bargain on second-hand clothes, you can still do the things you love while saving money.
Balance your budget
When setting a budget it can be all too easy to get carried away by underestimating your outgoings and overcommitting your saving ability. By restricting your budget too much, you leave yourself open to breaking your own rules. This is a slippery slope.
Instead, try to be flexible and realistic. Try adding up all of your essentials, such as rent, utilities and groceries; start a realistic savings goal and put money aside each month; and finally, don’t forget to allocate a bit of spending money.
If you don’t know where your money goes each month, try using autosaving apps like Chip, Plum, Squirrel and Yolt. These apps send notifications when you’ve overspent, break down spending into organised categories and use clever tech to work out what you can afford to save, automatically doing it for you. Some apps even let you invest your spare change and give you an analysis of your savings based on your daily checking account balance. Smart, huh? The idea is that you can squirrel away some of your cash without you even noticing – a lifesaver for those who find it difficult to put money aside or don’t know where to start when it comes to saving.
Score a financial goal
Whether short-term or long-term, goals help create a clear path towards a more secure financial future.
When goal setting, it’s important they are achievable, measurable and specific. Ask yourself: What am I saving for? How long will that take? What can help me stay on track? Who can hold me accountable?
Use these answers to help plan a route to help you reach your goal. Remember to set check-in moments to make sure you’re on track, and if you aren’t consider reassessing your plan rather than giving up completely. Always remain mindful of the reason you’re saving and all of the effort you’ve put into doing so.