Most people are constantly thinking of how to save money, but not very effectively. There are some very simple ways to save money in your everyday life; although they may seem like small steps, they definitely add up!
- Don't eat out. Of course, every once in a while won't hurt you, but many people eat out more than they cook at home, which adds up quickly. This doesn't only apply to cooking dinner at home, but also packing lunches instead of eating out during workdays. Another subcategory that many people forget about is buying their daily coffee. Think about the latte factor that has been in the news and buy a coffee maker or an espresso machine - it is easy to calculate the immense savings that can come of preparing food and beverages at home.
- Avoid bank fees. Never pay for checking! Most banks provide free checking if you sign up for direct deposit or keep a minimum balance in your account. Make sure that you don't pay overdraft fees, either by balancing your checkbook carefully or linking a credit card to your account. In addition, make sure you use your own bank's ATMs so that you don't get charged ATM fees.
- Cut down on your phone lines. If you can get away with just using a cell phone, do so because it will save money! You definitely don't need to pay for long distance on your landline nowadays; use a service like Skype or your cell phone instead!
- Use the library. New books are expensive, especially when they are hardcover. Getting a library membership can save quite a bit of money! If you can't find a book in the library, try buying it used on Half or eBay.
- Avoid buying water. Did you know that tap water in most parts of the United States actually has to meet higher standards than bottled water? Save your money and fill up a thermos or your own bottle.
- Don't buy new cars. The best deal is to buy used cars with low mileage. New cars depreciate quickly and leasing a car is the worst idea of all! Try to save money by making your car last as long as possible by performing regular maintenance on it, and bike or walk when you are able! This will help your car last and save you money on gas!
- Plan your grocery shopping. Everyone knows the rule about not shopping while hungry. However, impulse buys can happen even if you are not hungry. Make a list - make it carefully - and stick to that list! This will definitely help you save money.
- Consolidate your debt. Even if you need to see a credit counselor, try to consolidate all of your debt at a low interest rate. Get on a payment plan and stick to it so that you are not wasting your money on interest. Avoid incurring any new debt if possible.
- Pay all bills on time. Paying late fees for credit cards and other bills is just like throwing your money away. These late fees can be very expensive, so don't pay them! Pay your bills on time, using an online bill pay service if needed.
- Comparison shop. If you are in the market for electronics, appliances, or any major purchase, shop around. It is easy to check pricing online, but you can also go to physical stores in order to ask questions and see if the prices are negotiable. Many items can be found cheaper online.
Trying to save money in your everyday life does take some thought and effort. However, you will see the savings add up quickly if you are diligent about these money-saving tips!