We could all use a bit of extra money in the bank at the end of the month, but unfortunately sometimes saving money can be really hard. There are some tried and true ways you can save money, but most of them require A TON of effort and a lot of thinking and planning.
My favourite ways to save money are the ways that don’t require me to think much, or that save me money while it doesn’t feel like I’m saving money. That’s why I’ve spent so much time finding my favourite money hacks and websites/apps that can help me save a ton of money on autopilot.
How to Trick Yourself into Saving Money
Do a Savings Challenge
Some people just really need a goal to work towards that’s small and manageable in order to be able to save money. That’s where savings challenges come into play.
There are so many kinds of money saving challenges out there, so it can be complicated to figure out which one will work best for you. That’s why we wrote an article with the 10 Best Money Savings Challenges You Need to Try, just to make the process a bit easier for ya!
Use Acorns to Invest Your Spare Change
This is genuinely the definition of tricking yourself into saving money. Acorns invests your spare change without you ever having to think about it, or do anything except sign up! Seriously guys, this app is amazing if you hate putting in effort to save money.
Acorns automatically invest your spare change. How do they do this? Well, they connect to your bank account and round up any purchase you make to the nearest dollar. So, if you spend $2.50 on a coffee, they’ll invest the other 50 cents.
If you sign up for Acorns using our exclusive link, you can get a free $5 BONUS just for signing up! It’s a win-win!
Set Up Automatic Bill Payments
What’s the worst way to spend your money? Late fees.
The best thing you can do to trick yourself into saving money is to put all of your bill payments on auto-pay so that you never miss a payment.
Not only will this increase your credit score because you’ll be consistent and never miss a payment, it’ll also make sure you’re never paying late fees on any of your accounts! woot!
Use Digit to Save The Best Amount
A lot of the time, saving money is hard because we aren’t sure what a safe amount of money is for us to put into our savings account. You never want to put your last $20 in your savings and then realize you can’t afford to eat tonight.
That’s why I love Digit! Digit will analyze your spending habits and bill payments and find out the perfect amount of money for you to save that’s entirely personalized to you.
Digit also lets you set specific goals to save for, and if you have more than one goal, you can work towards both at once! Digit learns how you spend so that you don’t have to really do much work, or change your lifestyle.
Know Your Why
No matter what we’re talking about when it comes to money, I’m going to tell you to know your why. Why? Because if you don’t understand why you’re working towards something, you’re never going to be able to work hard toward something consistently.
There are a ton of different reasons why you could be trying to save more money. You could be working towards paying off debt, saving for a down payment on a car or house, or just trying to create a cushion for emergencies.
How does this trick you into saving money? Well, understanding your why helps you by always keeping the thought of what you’re working for at the front of your mind which forces you to think twice before making any unnecessary purchases!
Therefore, you essentially trick yourself into saving money every single day by just knowing and understand what you’re working toward.
Use Paribus for Price Adjustments
You know that horrible feeling that happens when you finally buy something online that you’ve been looking at forever only to see that the price dropped the next day or a few days later? Yeah, I feel that often and it sucks. I used to hate this feeling so much because there was nothing I could do about it… until now!
Paribus is a free service that connects to your email to scan your receipts and confirmation emails to notify you if there’s a price drop on anything you’ve recently purchased. Paribus will even do the work for you and get you that money refunded insanely fast. I don’t even understand how they do it, it’s like magic. Harry potter, who?
Have a Budget
Budgeting is my favourite way to save myself some money because it gives you a plan for every dollar, which makes sure you won’t make any silly impulse purchases!
Budgeting also helps you to reach your financial goals faster and be able to invest more money or pay off your debt quicker which just means you’ll have more money to work with anyway!
I suggest you start out with the Zero-Based Budgeting Method because it’s simple, and easy to use.
Tell Yourself You Have NO Money
If you’re anything like me, you probably have a problem where when you get paid you have that money burning a hole in your pocket for a few days and you just have an intense need to spend it.
This is not going to be a great way to save money if you have an urge to overspend! This is why it’s a great idea to act like you have no money even when you do. Leave your wallet at home. Only bring the money you need for your necessary purchases and don’t bring your credit cards. Your money is there for you to cover expenses and saving, and that is all!
But please, don’t use the word broke. It’s actually been shown that calling yourself broke convinces you that you’ll never get out of that cycle and you’ll actually be broke longer.
Not only does having a meal plan make your life easier but it also forces you to save money because you don’t waste nearly as much food as you do when you don’t have a plan. My favourite website for meal planning is called $5 Meal Plan, they send you a meal plan and a detailed grocery list each week for only $5 a month.
If you sign up using our exclusive link, you can get your first two weeks free!
Get Cash Back Online
When we do need to buy things, it’s really important to make sure you’re getting cash back anywhere you can because leaving this money on the table is just silly! That’s why I’m obsessed with Ebates.
Ebates is the best cash back website for all your online purchases, you can get up to 10% cash back on any purchase you make after clicking through from their links. There’s even a browser extension that will pop up whenever you’re on an ebates affiliate websites (like amazon or sephora).
Get Cashback on Groceries
One of the only things we can’t avoid buying is groceries, so why not make the most of grocery buying by getting some cash back? There’s an app for that!
Checkout 51 can help trick yourself into saving money because they give you cash back on purchases you’re already going to make. All you have to do is to take a photo of your grocery receipt and you’ll get cash back on different products each week. Try it out for free!
Think of Prices as Time Worked
When I was in college I had a lot of wants but not a ton of needs and really needed to trick myself into saving money in a ton of small ways and this was definitely one of them.
Every time I would find something I thought I wanted I would take a few seconds in my head to figure out exactly how long I would have to work at my crappy coffee shop job to be able to afford it.
Usually, the item cost at least $100 which at $12.85 an hour (I was a supervisor with 5 years seniority, not a typical wage for most workers) would take way too long to pay for so I would put it back and just go home.
This saved me hundreds of dollars over the few years I was in college and it’s a great way to slow yourself down and really think about whether or not you need to make a purchase.
Increase Your Credit
Most people don’t understand just how important credit scores are and just how much money a good credit score can save you. When you have a good credit score you get lower interest rates on just about everything which can save you a ton of money in the long run.
If you’ve experienced a recent credit score drop you should really find out why it decreased and work hard to get it back up before trying to borrow any more credit so you can save money in the long run!
Only Use Cash
Paying for all of your purchases with cash will convince your brain to buy less because you aren’t able to go over the limit of what’s in your wallet! It’s the oldest trick in the book.
Every big money blogger will tell you that using cash is one of the best ways to save money without really having to put that much effort into it.
Bonus Tip: Let Yourself Live
I know that it seems like when you’re saving money you don’t get to have a life anymore, but that doesn’t have to be the case. You don’t have to put yourself in jail just because you need to cut costs. Let yourself live. Treat yourself once in a while. Have a life because life is short.
Having extra money in the bank at the end of the month is a really great thought and it can be easy if you do these small tricks to make yourself save money.
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