- Change The Way You Think
The first step to saving money is changing the way you think of money. If you’re used to buying anything you want, whenever you want – a takeaway cup of coffee every day, a new pair of shoes every month – you need to start changing your habits and changing any habit starts in the mind. So stop spending on unnecessary things and make some sacrifices. Get your priorities right and decide if you want to spend the money now on something you don’t need or spend it on something bigger and more worthy later.
It may not sound like much but when you go to the supermarket and only buy what you want, you’ll end up saving money. So make a list of what you’re going to cook/eat each week and only buy the ingredients you need. And, if you want to save further, pack a lunch to work every day, instead of eating out.
It’s not just ‘aunties’ who get the best bargains, now you can get them too! When you see a good deal for, say, household products, buy in bulk instead of just one item. You’re going to have to buy them again anyway, so why not get them at the lowest price?
The rationale here is, if you don’t have the money to pay for it now, you shouldn’t be buying it. Putting everything on credit is a dangerous habit so avoid it if you can, nobody should be paying those exorbitant interest rates if they don’t have to. So unless you’re clearing your credit card bills in full every single month, pay everything with cash.
If you’re paying your mobile phone bill every month without noticing how much you’re actually using, it’s time to pay attention. Getting a pre-paid plan will make you track your usage better because you will need to pay more to get more talktime. And, to save on data usage – and therefore not incurring any extra costs – use public wifi whenever it’s available. It might not sound like much but it all adds up in the long run.
Make a note of what you save and what you spend every week or month. That way, you’ll know exactly how much money is coming in and where your money is going so it’s easy to decide where to cut down. Keep track of your expenses. There are always going to be times when you need ’emergency’ money, and this will make it easy for you to know where to tighten your belt so you can get this extra cash.
Start a new bank account solely for the purpose of saving. Put a small sum in it every month. Even if it’s just $50, you’ll end up with $600 at the end of the year – that’s money for a holiday that you didn’t even have to make much of an effort to save up for. And, once you get into the habit of setting aside some money, you won’t even notice that it’s ‘gone’ so you won’t miss it.
The beauty of living in the 21st century is that information is always at our fingertips. So why should you pay a higher price than necessary when it’s so easy to find better deals? Use price comparison websites like Price Panda or Price Me and grab some bargains.
Text: Balvinder Sandhu/HerWorld Plus
Additional Reporting: Atika Lim