I know a lot of people considered “To save more money this year” as their resolution for 2010.
A month and a half into the year, how has it been? I hope you’re doing fine with your plan.
To inspire and give you some tips, here is Raine, our guest blogger for today, telling you her story on how she started saving.
Below, she shares her three strategies on how she was able to curb her spending and kept the money flowing into her savings. Let’s now read her story.
I used to be a reckless spender, with no budget and mountains of debt. It’s taken me a long time, but I’ve finally gotten better at saving money. Here are three things that helped me save better and get back on track.
At the top of the list, I paid myself first.
That means that I took 10% off the top of every paycheck and put it into a savings account. You have to do it right away; if it’s left to your discretion, or done a few days after you’re paid, you’ll never stick with it and you won’t save like you need to.
I know it seems counterintuitive to start with less money every pay period, but trust me: After a while, you won’t miss it. Plan your monthly budget using the 90% of your check that you keep, and everything will work out.
It’s important that the saved 10% go into a savings account and not just a supplementary checking account. The point is to ignore the money and put it toward the future, when you’ll need it for something you don’t even know about yet.
Second, I reduced my discretionary spending (things like DVDs and music purchases) and put the cash toward paying down debt.
I never realized how much I was spending on needless junk until I started using the money for something productive. My advice: Tackle the smallest debt first, and then move onto larger ones in a “snowball method”.
Third, I budgeted.
I made a list of every income source and every expenditure or bill for the month, and realized I could no longer go on living check-to-check with such a thin margin between what I made and what I spent.
I realized that, while an occasional night on the town was fun and could provide a nice break, I didn’t need to keep going to restaurants and bars when I could stay in. You’d be amazed at how easy it is to be fulfilled by spending less.
Those are three things that worked for me, but there are more ways out there to save a few dollars and cut down on your spending. With a little hard work, you can start saving and see some real financial growth
Do you have your own story to tell? Then why not share them here.
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