The way in which you start your January sets the tone for the rest of the year. Start 2022 off with these fantastic ways to save money. Though these are only minor changes to your day-to-day activities, you could save hundreds if not thousands of dollars in the long run. Apply these strategies today, you’ll be glad you did.
We’re not going to tell you that you must specifically designate 50% of your income for living expenses, 30% to your wants, and 20% to your savings or investments. We’re not going to push anything of the sort on you because, simply, everyone has a different life and different preferences.
And in the same vein, you should not push a hyper strict budget onto yourself either. A long-known psychological truth is that when individuals place unrealistic expectations onto themselves in terms of budgeting, dieting, exercise, or what have you, they virtually all fall short. Further, people sustaining these unattainable expectations are actually more likely to fail miserably and, for lack of a better term, relapse into their old, disorganized, and unhealthy ways.
Create a budget that you enjoy. Create a budget that is flexible. Create a budget that allows you to be human. What I see often in people trying to organize their finances is that they treat themselves like a tyrant who cannot step one foot out of line or even spend $1 on their life’s enjoyment. Be kind to yourself and construct a budget that works with who you are. This will save you money in the long run – because you are not relapsing as harshly into previous spending habits – and will save you from immense, unnecessary stress overall.
An age-old strategy of saving money is to make your own coffee and pack a lunch before going to work. This has been echoed so many times it seems to have lost its importance. Let’s crunch the numbers for a second:
With 5 coffees and 5 lunches a week, our poor Canadian friend here spends $71.10 a week. Over the course of a month that cost jumps to $284.40. And, with these convenience purchases, this Canadian spends a walloping $3,697.20 a year. Obviously, lunch – and arguably coffee – is a necessary cost of one’s day, but how could someone save their money here?
Say this Canadian still drinks coffee 5 times a week, however they brew it at home. The average cost of an at-home coffee is $0.25 a cup.
Also, say this Canadian packs their own lunch 5 times a week. By purchasing deli and grocery store ingredients, a viable packed lunched may cost $4.00.
This new-and-improved Canadian pays only $21.25 a week, $85.00 a month, and $1,105.00 a year.
By simply prepping your coffee and lunch at home, you can save over $2,500 a year. It’s as simple as that. Of course, any change to your daily routine will take effort, but if those minor changes can bring you an extra couple thousand dollars every year, it seems like a no brainer.
I’m not a betting man, but if I was, I would put money on having someone throughout my day complain about the price of gas. Gas Buddy and other similar apps try to relieve this problem. They match you with the closest gas stations that are boasting the most cost-efficient prices near you. I just did a quick search on their website and found a 10¢ discrepancy between local gas stations!
It may not seem like a big issue. However, when saving 7¢ a litre here and 10¢ a litre there it can truly add up. I’d highly recommend checking out apps and websites like this that connect you with the best gas prices. There’s nothing to lose, only money to save!
Online shopping shows no signs of slowing down, especially since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic. And the perk of online shopping is the great accessibility of coupons and discounts, primarily with apps that help you locate them. A great example is Honey. Honey is a browser add-on that, when at online checkout, automatically applies the best available discount for your purchase. Personally, I have saved over $200 in the past year due to having Honey. It’s free and incredibly easy to use.
If online shopping is a common occurrence in your life, give these coupon finder apps and add-ons a try. After saving on countless purchases, most of you will be satisfied with the results! Please reach out if you have any questions here.
I have a challenge for you. Sit down one month with others in your household, take out a pen and paper, and jot down all the subscriptions you currently pay for. Try and remember everything. Streaming services, music platforms, delivery services, even your newly purchased January gym membership (haha). After these are all laid out, have a discussion with your family about which subscriptions are currently being used sufficiently as well as which ones have fallen out of favour.
It may be painful to realize that, in this discussion, some of your subscriptions are not being used and only costing you money. But it’s important that you’re aware of this fact. Don’t try to rationalize or make excuses for services not used, just be honest here. When you have the time, feel free to downgrade or even cancel those you are not actively benefitting from. Depending on your circumstance, this could free up tens, hundreds, or thousands of dollars a year. Instead of remaining in the blissful ignorance of not knowing, you can healthily manage your subscriptions. Thus, you’ll have more available cash for that vacation you’ve always wanted, that house you’ve wished to own, or that retirement you deserve.
Overall, these 5 strategies can help you re-evaluate your current expenses and save greatly. From coffees, to gas, to online purchasing, with the smallest changes in our lives monumental benefits are in store.
We hope this blog post helps you take steps closer to reaching your ideal financial situation. As always, feel free to book a free meeting with us to discuss how to best position yourself for the future.
We’re only a phone call or email away, so don’t hesitate to reach out. Until next time, take care.