17 actionable Money Saving Tips

By Monday, June 8, 2020 4 0

In this post, I’ll give you 17 money saving tips you can do this week. This list is optimized for your benefit to effort ratio. They give you the most bang for your buck. Let the money saving tips begin.

1. Money Saving Tips to Stay in Control Financially

Financial Success is all about balance

Your attitudes about money are formed very early on it. If you had parents that didn’t take money seriously then you might see that you have made some unwise financial moves yourselves. Here are some money saving tips for your financial attitude.

  • Take a few minutes to think about your relationship to money. Is it super important to you or do you take it lightly because you don’t want to feel greedy?
  • Assess the the shortcomings that your attitude about money has left you with you.
  • Ruminate on these thoughts the next time you are about to spend your money.

2. You Can be Generous and Responsible Simultaneously

Part of money is giving. There are valid reasons to give but lots of people give their money to those in “need” to the point that they actually become the people in need. Willie Nelson is an example of this. Southpark has even made a satire of it.

It’s ok to give some money if you are fully financially successful, but don’t be foolish about it. Here are some money saving tips to balance charity with financial responsibility.

  • Don’t try to influence people by tipping. Leave a standard 15% tip. It’s appropriate and kind.
  • Don’t give money to panhandlers. Numerous studies have shown giving people cash rarely solves their core problems. There are other ways to help.
  • If you choose to give to a person or a cause, keep it reasonable and rare. Even small amounts add up.

3. Money making Tips to Profit by Doing Nothing

If you own stock and it goes up you essentially made money by doing nothing. This isn’t literally as true as some people would have you believe because you actually did something, you risked your money. In any case, you can take action to get some of your money in the market today.

  • Get some money in the market by taking a careful look at your employer’s 401k plan.
  • Look into simple CD’s where you bank. They can make you much higher interest compared to a regular savings account.
  • Learn the basics of investing and become a novice investor through an application like acorns.

4. Prevent Money Waste by Planning it’s Use

When I first had some financial success and money to invest one of the first things I did was hire a financial planner. Financial planners get you to invest in things. It’s quite possible they are trying to get you to invest in something they have an interest in. What I really want to share with you is the gem of wisdom my financial planner told me. He said, “it’s easier to invest when you know what the money is for”. You don’t need to make wild investments to make good on this advice. You can apply it to this month’s expenses in the following ways.

  • Segment the money you have, possibly in different accounts
  • Start taking notes on your money and keep in mind what things are saving for in the long term and short term.
  • Hide your money from yourself so that don’t feel tempted to go out and blow on something that you want.

5. Plan your Money Management with your Spouse or significant other

Money is one of the biggest fights in cohabitating relationships. It typically stems from people having very different attitudes about money and it’s use. If your relationship is splintered on money it’s going to be very hard to do well financially. Conversely, if you have an open dialogue about money use your money will go a lot further.

Get on the same sheet of music for your money
  • Discuss your money goals with the people you live with and have a budget.
  • Prioritize the use of the money so when using it for enjoyment you aren’t worried about the new roof your house needs.
  • Don’t make excuses for a lack of financial discipline. If you break your ankle you need a cast. You don’t need a 77 inch Tv.

6. Get focused on your Money by Ditching your junk

so true!

People hang on to possessions for various reasons. Sometimes they have good reasons, but usually what you think is a good reason isn’t. By getting rid of clutter that doesn’t serve you anymore you will focus on using your money for more important goods and services. Try these steps.

  • Identify stuff you just do use anymore or serves you no purpose.
  • If you think it has some resale value consider selling it on Ebay or have a garage sale.
  • The stuff you own ends up owning you. After you get rid of some stuff think about how you feel about it. You might be less stressed and more prepared to make better decisions.

7. Do Better than Average by Being Better than Average

There is a huge force in human nature called social proof. Ostensibly this is a force to do what other people are doing. The key point is most people aren’t doing well. People are in debt and maybe one or two paychecks away from financial ruin. You can do better.

  • Don’t buy things because you see lots of other people buying them. These things include minivans, laptops, and cell phones.
  • Accept that different people are going to do different things. Some will have a good outcome, some will have a disastrous outcome.
  • Know that some people will have more money than you. Life is complicated and comparison is a happiness killer.
Don’t be a sheep. You can do better!

8. Save Money by Negotiating your Bills

A common thing that happens to people is they want to start saving money so they decide to cancel a service like cable tv. In a desperate move, the cable company tries to stop you from canceling by lowering the price. The lesson here is they could have lowered that price long ago. It also means you have to manage your costs and constantly try to get them to lower the price. Here is what you can do.

  • You can try negotiating with your service providers by threatening to quit or just going with their cheaper competitor on a promotion.
  • I really like BillShark. They do the negotiation for you and you pay them 40% of the savings. They have really delivered on my internet price and cell phone cost.
  • Some services you might not really need. Are you paying for lawn maintenance or pest control? You can probably handle these things for yourself.

9. Get to Know Yourself and Save a Fortune

Have you gotten into a hobby like golf? Did you buy a bunch of golf clubs and now they are collecting dust in the garage? You aren’t alone. Starting something is easy, becoming good at is another story. By analyzing your past behaviors you can get to know yourself and learn what you will and won’t stick with it. This will help spend your money wisely. Here is how you can take action.

  • Be aware of the trap of starting new things and abandoning them. It seems like fun at the time, but really it wastes your money if you are consistent with it.
  • Look at your hobbies you have been doing the longest. Put your continued time and effort into these things instead. Money doesn’t buy happiness, but things that make you happy will.
  • Only start a new hobby if you are serious about a long term commitment to it.

10. Save Money by Living on your Own Terms

What makes you happy is probably pretty unique. You were likely influenced by many factors from your youth. You should factor this sentiment into your spending and lifestyle. Don’t spend your money on things to fit in. Spend your money on the few things that bring you joy.

  • Don’t be pressured into buying things by not using any platforms with commercials.
  • Dedicate some time in your day to be alone and think about times when you were happy. It’s worth it
  • You are a person and you count just as much as anyone else.

11. Save Money with Purchasing Patterns

If a hat costs $10 do 5 hats cost $50? The answer to this seems obvious but actually the answer is no! The real world is not linear. If you buy in bulk you are likely to get a discount. This is the whole business model of purchasing clubs like Costco and BJs. You can use this to make your spending go much farther.

  • Consider joining a spending warehouse like Costco if it’s close to your home.
  • Starting scanning for rewards points or rebates. This is especially true for credit cards.
  • Forget about grocery coupons. They are usually for unhealthy food or things you rarely buy. You don’t need a stockpile of 25 toothbrushes and 10 boxes of popsicles. Stockpiling from extensive couponing is a form of hoarding.

12. Plan for Yourself and your Money Plan will be Automatic

Think about how much money you have wasted because you changed your mind or just didn’t have a firm plan. If you plan for yourself you’ll save a lot of money but you have to make an honest assessment of what you really want. Here’s is how you can use this mentality to your advantage.

  • Make a steady plan for your life that you can be consistent with. Think about where you want to live and what career you will have long term.
  • Know that your life will have seasons. Be aware of this and don’t let it disrupt your overarching plan.
  • Acknowledge your previous mistakes and commit to not repeating them. Don’t forget the maxim, “A mistake repeated is a choice”.

13. Make Money a Parameter of your Health

There are parameters of your health. The most obvious ones are your vitals. You know your vitals are things like blood pressure and respiration. Your financial health is not comparable to literally breathing but it is a parameter of your health and stability. You should treat it like that.

  • At least once a month assess your financial health. Are your bills being paid? Is there anything strange that might need to be contested
  • Check-in on your investments. Are they still sound? Is the performance about what you thought it should be.
  • Be sure your cash holding is growing every month. Your life is a business and needs to be profitable like any other business.

14. Beware of Scams and Ridiculous Money Strategies

Once you have some money you are more likely to spend. You are also more likely to buy into niche schemes to make more of it because it’s “what the cool kids are doing”. Don’t get scammed and watch for these traps and sales pitches.

  • Be wary of great money opportunity that happens to find you.
  • Be skeptical of any advice that starts with “one weird trick” or some similar wording.
  • The only way out of debt is to pay the bill or declare bankruptcy. Any service that sells itself as a way out of debt will likely cause you to take on more debt.

15. Learn the Most Basic Types of Investment

There are actually 3 options for your money.

The most basic investment is cash. That means you just don’t spend your money. If you can do this you are far ahead of most people. Beyond just saving your money you should try to learn more about investments. You don’t have to put your money where your mouth is, but you should consider learning more. Here are some money saving tips you can get started today.

  • You can invest in cash but make sure your bank is paying respectable interest rates. Online banks are more likely to pay a decent interest rate
  • Look at cd options where you bank. You can lock in a decent interest rate if you have money you know won’t use for awhile.
  • Take some time to extend your financial education. Learn about equities and fixed income markets. There are many ways to invest but get to know your risk preference because it will be the backbone of any investment.

16. Money Savings Tips to Self Insure

Everyone knows about insurance but insurance is a business and they could just end up denying your claim then you have to pay for your problem and pay insurance premiums. You can self insure by saving money for dedicated reasons where conventional insurance is unlikely to help you.

  • Consider self-insuring for your pet’s medical expenses. Most pet insurance is not worth the money. You can do better just saving for this dedicated reason.
  • Car repairs are another thing that should be in your mentality to self insure for.
  • If you own a home you can expect to pay at least 1% of the value of your house per year in maintenance. You can self insure for expensive home appliances like water heaters and AC units.

17. Find a Pattern of Success

Success comes steps. It rarely comes all at once

Don’t use a narrow time line to determine your success in your finances. Some things are out of your control and you might make more money in some months or spend more seasonally in others.

  • Try forecasting your savings every month but keep your finger on the pulse of it’s total in 6 month increments.
  • Remember a forecast is just an estimate. It’s better to overestimate your expenses and have a surplus rather than be disappointed by loss.
  • Benchmark where you are and see if you can do things to improve. Once you have some success in front of you it’s easier to be motivated and make improvements.

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4 Comments
  • Unwanted Life
    July 8, 2020

    I use to be terrible with money, due to having BPD and coming from a poor family, so I grow up not caring about money, although now I’m better with money, I just don’t have enough of it to be able to do anything useful with it.

    By the way. What’s are CDs in this context?

    “Look into simple CD’s where you bank” from tip 3

    Unwanted Life

  • Adam Wilson
    July 8, 2020

    Certificate of deposit. It’s a risk free way to invest your money. Check out your local bank to get started.

  • Kat Rucker
    August 8, 2020

    Thanks for sharing this fantastic list! I really like #5 because I am experiencing it for the first time myself. My boyfriend moved in with me back in March and it’s the first time that I’ve ever had to plan my long term finances with someone. I’m really glad that we tend to be on the same page, but you are so right about how it can splinter a relationship if you aren’t careful.

  • Bella Wanana
    August 9, 2020

    Thank you for the post! Your list has given me an opportunity to do some more self-reflection to identify the areas that I can do better at for my personal finance journey. The point about self-insurance is very interesting. It is definitely something that I should consider.

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