When someone tells you that saving money is simple or you read a story about how to save $5,000 in one year, you’re right to be a little skeptical.
You might look at yourself at wonder how you’re not able to do that, since of course you have the pieces of the puzzle right here in front of you.
You have an income, you know your expenses and your budget is written out long hand on a piece of notebook paper or kept nicely in a more modern spreadsheet, but that just won’t suffice if you’re truly trying to save money as a result of having all of those aforementioned ducks in that row.
Having a budget isn’t about just the black and white, just the obvious or those numbers going around your head that are steadfast and easy to spot, such as paying for a vehicle every month or making sure you pay your utility bills.
The majority of the population doesn’t have money saved, so you’d think two things are happening: They’re living beyond their means and making bad decisions or their budget leave a lot to be desired.
Saving money and doing so easily rests on those two points. The bad decisions lead to wasted money and can be avoided without much work. Think about overdraft fees or other bank fees (such as ATM charges) that can save you hundreds if you follow two easy rules: use your bank’s ATM all the time and link a savings account to a checking account or have some sort of backup if you forget about a charge and your account goes negative.
And when you think about saving money, you’d assume that free is better than having to pay for things. So if you brew your own coffee at home and bring it with you, that might save you $5 per day on coffee at a more expensive place while you’re out and about, and the same goes for bottled water at $1.50 per day versus filling up a plastic container before you leave the house. These small, up front costs don’t seem like much, but they add up to the tune of thousands of dollars in your pocket because you’ve simply adjusted how you get what you want without paying for it twice (water bill, water at home versus buying bottled).
No one is going to argue that some aspects of saving money are difficult, but the majority of what you do when it comes to putting cash aside should center on the day to day decisions and if you’re ultimately making the right ones.
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