Saving money isn’t just about finding bargains. It is also about cutting costs and doing more with what you earn. Think about this. Say you trim $300 from your budget every month. Over a year that is $3600. Over 10 years it is $36,000. Over 30 years that is $108,000. And this is all before compounding and putting this money into investment vehicles.
What this all means is saving a little bit matters. For some, cutting costs and investing your money can have the same financial impact as having a part-time job or getting a raise. While this scenario doesn’t take into account all of life’s bumps and hiccups that could interfere with you saving—and how the market performs—it means you should all the more be serious about saving money early and consistently.
The following is a list of things you can painlessly cut to help get you that extra $300/month:
1) Learn to cook! Making your meals at home is a huge cost-savings opportunity. This is not just about what you spend eating out, but includes gratuity, interest charges on credit cards, the money you could be saving buying in bulk, and how much you are going to over eat by going out.
2) Be a better shopper: With e-deals from Groupon, email lists offered by stores, or going to Costco, being a deal seeker doesn’t have to mean changing your lifestyle. Though you do need to be more cognizant of what you buy and why, you can easily purchase most of the things you want, just cheaper.
3) Be energy efficient: If this means buying energy efficient appliances, looking at the insulation in your house, or having an automatic thermostat, these are all huge savings that add up during the cold winter months and sweltering summers.
Over the long-term, regaining these savings can really bump your income and help you make the most out of your savings. Also remember to reduce investment fees and seek out more competitive interest rates on savings accounts. Both financial strategies over the long run can determine if you reach your financial milestones. Thinking you can rely on the market is nice, but the real source of your wealth comes from your income and what you save.