Are you looking for some simple ways to save more money? Chances are, there are areas in your life where you’re overspending, so it’s probably time to take a closer look at your budget to see where you can afford to cut costs. Find out how a more mindful approach to your finances can save you time, money and even lessen your impact on the environment – all without affecting your quality of life.
We all have to eat, but often times our eyes are bigger than our stomachs. That’s why nearly 30% of the food purchased in the U.S. gets thrown away, wasting both food and money. Even a few dollars’ worth of fruits or vegetables a week adds up fast.
If you don’t like eating the same thing two days in a row, freeze your leftovers so they last longer. Before grocery shopping, take inventory of what you have already so you don’t double up on perishables. Freeze fruits and vegetables that are about to go to waste for use later. Optimize your shopping list, buy only what you need for the week and prioritize the foods you need to use next by keeping them on their own shelf to avoid missing your window of opportunity.
Wasting energy is another big cash-drain. Leaving the fridge open while you make your selection, leaving windows open when the A/C is running, and leaving lights on when you leave a room are all little ways you rob your home of its energy-efficiency, and rob yourself of a little extra money every month. You can always reach for the help of a payday loan in Manning, Santee, and Walterboro to cover a utility bill in a pinch, but there are lots of ways you can save energy and money when you put your mind to it.
Cooking bigger portions and freezing your leftovers can save on both food costs and your power bill. Covering your pots and pans helps you cook faster so that the heat being generated by your stove goes to good use. You can also limit how much you use your HVAC unit by throwing on a sweater or a blanket when you’re home instead of turning up the heat, and turning off the A/C when you’re not home. A little discipline can go a long way in lowering your electric bill.
Owning too much car can be just as expensive as owning too much house. Consider what your needs really are. If you’re single and living in a metropolitan area, chances are you really don’t need an SUV. Before buying, leasing, or even renting a new set of wheels, make sure it’s the best match for your true driving needs. Perhaps taxis and public transportation will be cheaper in the long-run, especially if you’re considering a big gas-guzzler or high-end vehicle that requires premium gas and costly maintenance.
If you absolutely do need a car, try to drive only when necessary and carpool, cycle or walk whenever possible. Avoid driving all over town every other day by running all your errands once a week, and try to stop for gas on the way home instead of having to make another trip later in the week. Lastly, avoid costly repairs when you’re short on cash by doing routine maintenance on your vehicle – if you take better care of it, it will take better care of you.
Are you prone to impulse buys or over-shopping when you see sales that seem too good to pass up? When it does come to shopping, try to be more mindful of how your money is being spent. If you buy clothes to relax and unwind, or just for thrill of the hunt, chances are you’re giving yourself unnecessary clutter and debt to deal with later.
A payday loan could help you recover from your spending habit, but before you hit the mall, go through what you already have and repair, reuse, or repurpose whenever you aren’t using. If all else fails, get rid of it. Gently used clothing is always welcome at thrift shops and consignment stores, and clothes that are worse for wear might as well go in the trash rather than take up precious space.
We’ve all heard the saying, “time is money”, so how are you spending your free time? If you sleep 7 hours a night, that leaves you 17 more hours or the day to work with. Subtract 8 hours for your work day and an hour or so for commute time, and that leaves you 8 hours of downtime. Maybe you could use 4 hours to cook and clean and find a side-hustle for the other 4?
Budget your time so it’s not wasted on TV and procrastination. Making extra money with your free time may help you reach your financial goals that much faster. The best part is that time can be used to make your life easier instead of going to waste. Are you making the most of your time? See how much you can save with a more mindful take on your time and money.