(Featured photo provided by vacu.org)
Whether you’re just trying to save up a few extra bucks, or if you’re saving up some big event, it’s not going to be easy. You may feel like no matter how much you try to save, there are always new expenses that arise and you just don’t have anything leftover. However, there are some proven and effective ways that you can apply to your day-to-day life to save money easier.
- Cut back on groceries:
Most people would think that they don’t spend much money on groceries, but it’s estimated that an average American family of four spends around $928 per month or about $11,136 annually just on groceries. Probably one of the biggest reasons why this is is impulse buys, the little things you add along the way in the store. Sure, that bag of chips or extra soda might seem like chump change, but over time those purchases can really add up. One way is to check what food you have in your kitchen/pantry before going out so you don’t accidentally buy extra, and also bring a list so you can make sure that you can stick to the list. If you still don’t trust yourself from the temptation of impulse purchases, many grocery stores offer a pickup or delivery service so you don’t have to step foot into a store, which can save a lot of money. Lastly, try buying fewer name-brand products as there might be some generic store-brand products available that offer the same quality but at a lower price.
- Avoid buying that daily cup of Joe:
Many Americans might buy a cup of coffee from a local coffee shop semi-daily or even daily, but while that might not seem like much, again, it can really add up over time. According to CNN, an American will on average spend around $8.43 every time they visit a coffee shop, and if a person were to only go every other day, that would still be a total of around $126.45 a month just on coffee. One very easy way to solve this is just to simply brew your own coffee at home using a coffee maker. So instead of buying a coffee every other day, you can just buy some coffee beans in bulk every once in a while and really save money.
- Cancel expensive subscription services:
Many Americans nowadays are subscribed to multiple subscription services such as Netflix, Amazon Prime, and perhaps even a gym membership. One thing you should immediately do is unsubscribe from any services that you don’t use regularly because otherwise, they’re just burning a hole in your pocket. Sure, maybe you might use it a lot more sometime in the future, but there’s no guarantee, and you shouldn’t be holding on to so many services when you might never get the chance to use them. When purchasing a subscription, you should also be careful to turn off auto-renew so you’ll be able to control exactly when you want to cancel/renew your subscription.
- Limit yourself from eating out:
Every once in a while, you might feel like eating out in a fancy restaurant or cheap fast food joint, but have you ever considered the real cost of eating out frequently? For example, you might order a burger and fries once every week for about $7, however, that can add up to over $350 a year! In America, the average household spends about $3,526 on food outside of home when you could be saving a lot more money. One very simple way to solve this is to pack/make your own lunch at home. Oftentimes, a meal or two at a restaurant is equivalent to a week’s worth of groceries. So why bother having to pay for expensive meals when you can just make it your own for much cheaper and often much bigger proportions.
- Stop expensive habits:
Many Americans might have expensive habits which might not be necessary or helpful, one example of this is smoking. If you were to smoke a pack and a half every day, you lose nearly $3000 every year when it’s an unnecessary habit. Not only is it bad for your wallet, but it’s also bad for your health as it can lead to serious problems such as lung disease or even death.
Hopefully, you can apply at least one of these methods into your day-to-day life and just see how much money you can really save.