How to Save $2600 in 12 months!
Trying to save money can be one of the hardest things a person can do when money is tight. So many of us are living paycheck to paycheck and can barely find the money to buy a $20 meal with friends.
When you think of having $2600 in your savings account in one years time, how does that make you feel? Pretty damn good huh?
It isn’t as hard to do as it sounds. I know money can be tight with your current lifestyle, but by making these 10 small changes you can easily save $50 a week and make this goal a reality.
1. Switch expensive nights out for free entertainment
As a 20-something most of my social invitations include nights out at a bar and expensive dinners with friends. We are social creatures and our need for interaction with other humans is real, we just need to find ways to satisfy it with less of an impact on our wallets.
Some of the most fun nights I’ve had with my friends were game nights, we sit around for hours playing silly games like Blokus!
There is so much opportunity for arguments and laughs and that’s the main thing my friends and family love.
Another option for a free evening of fun can be a potluck instead of an expensive dinner out.
Getting all of your friends to come over with different dishes and watching movies can be a great way to bond over different foods from different countries all while having a good laugh with your friends.
Finally, although it may sound really lame, my absolute favourite thing to do with my boyfriend is to go for a nice walk down by some kind of water.
Luckily for us, we live right by a river that’s a major border crossing between the US and Canada and it’s absolutely beautiful weather by the water all year round.
We use this as a way to have uninterrupted conversations for an hour at a time without any outside distractions like phones. It’s amazing and one of the reasons why I think we’re so close.
2. Drop unnecessary expenses
We live in a time of subscription boxes and online streaming services, but how many of these services do you really need to survive? The answer is ZERO.
Now, I’ll admit that I have a Netflix subscription but this is because I don’t have regular cable and it’s my only monthly subscription that I don’t pause each month or have turned off.
If you currently have cable you should really decide if it’s worth the 100+ dollars a month that you’re probably spending. Is it possible to get smaller online packages that will add up to less than the whole deal?
If you currently pay $100 a month for cable, just cutting this service could bring you $1200 in a year of savings, pretty crazy stuff huh?
If you have any other online subscription services (i.e., JustFab, Audible, etc) it is always possible to either pause the subscription or skip the month. I have a JustFab membership because I love shoes, but I skip anywhere from 7-10 months a year. I use it for a pair of boots and a nice pair of sandals each year.
I have a JustFab membership because I love shoes, but I skip anywhere from 7-10 months a year. I use it for a pair of boots and a nice pair of sandals each year.
3. Plan your meals ahead of time and keep them simple
Meal planning can be key to keeping your grocery bills down. The more you plan, the less you’ll spend on groceries and eating out.
Going to the grocery store with a list that is specific and easy to execute will stop you from impulse buying and junk food!
Meal planning will also help you to bring meals to work for lunches which can save you anywhere from 5-20 dollars a day!
4. Make your savings a bill
A really popular personal finance quote is “Do not save what is left after spending, but spend what is left after saving”. This is a really great thing to live by. So many of us go through our lives thinking we don’t have the money to be able to build up a savings account because we have too many expenses but frankly that just isn’t true.
In order to keep yourself consistent with your savings efforts, you’re going to want to throw an automatic payment to a separate bank account into the mix.
If you’re paid every other Friday, you’ll set up an automatic payment for $100 every two weeks and this will be money you won’t even see.
Random expenses are going to come up throughout that two week period, but they should never come out of your savings unless it’s an absolute emergency.
5.Shop at dollar and discount stores first
Being in our 20s is a time where a lot of people are focused on brand names and don’t think that shopping at dollar stores is “cool”. Saving money isn’t “cool”, it never will be. But I’m here to make it cool because it’s going to help to build your future!
Dollar stores have a lot of decent brands of cheap stuff that you can get for half the price you’d pay at a regular store.
You can get cleaning supplies, kitchen stuff, and so many other things for a dollar instead of $5 at a regular store.
6. Make your morning coffee at home
I understand a person’s need to caffeinate in the morning. There are some days where I swear I wouldn’t be able to get out of bed without caffeinating.
What I will never understand is the need to spend 5+ dollars at a speciality coffee shop when you can make decent coffee at home for under a dollar a cup.
All you’re going to need for this tip is a decent thermal mug and either a coffee maker or a french press. This may seem like a big investment but in the long run, it will save you hundreds.
7. Cut out junk food
Ahhhhh the dreaded cutting out of things that make us feel good. This is one of the few tips that’s going to manage to save you money as well as save some inches around your waistline.
Junk food is some of the most expensive food you can buy for the nutrients you actually get when eating it. A big bag of chips can be upwards of $5 and is only going to fill a void in your life for a short period of time.
Cutting this out is going to make you feel better physically as well as increase your money money money.
I’m guilty of often using junky foods as a way of rewarding myself when I do good, or forgiving myself when I do something wrong. It’s a crutch and it’s something that I’m really working on.
8. Use Ebates to earn cash back when shopping
Sometimes shopping can be unavoidable. We need things. We want things. We had a bad day and need to buy a new outfit for that party this weekend. I don’t blame you. Everybody has slip-ups.
The best way to go about shopping online is to earn some cash back when you do it. Ebates is the perfect way to do so! Ebates offers insane percentages off your purchase as cash back and can add up to some serious cash over the course of 12 months.
9. Buy generic items whenever possible
This goes along with shopping at dollar stores. Anything you can’t find in a dollar store will have some kind of generic brand at a grocery store. You can get the same quality butter, cheese, bread, etc without having to spend that brand name mark up and can add up to tons of money in time.
10. Save on heating costs
Put. On. Sweaters. I grew up in a house where the heat didn’t get turned on until the absolute last bearable minute. The house was 100 years old and the heating costs were astronomical.
My mom never let us turn on the heat so I’ve gotten used to just throwing on a sweater, an extra pair of socks and snuggling under a blanket just to stay sane!
In addition, shivering burns calories!!!!
I really hope these 10 easy tips will help you to save $50 a week and have $2600 in a savings account by the end of a year.
As always, if you have any questions, comments, or concerns feel free to reach out through my contact page and I’ll answer quickly!
Have a great week, and keep killing it