Have you ever wondered what you could be doing different to help you save a little more money each month? I know I do.
Since I can remember I have been conscious of how much I spend. I still remember at 5 years old going to the bank with my dad and siblings to deposit money into our individual savings accounts.
You could say it all started then and there. I have been saving ever since. The need to save money is a part of me that I don’t ever see changing.
I believe my seemingly unconventional ways have helped me harness my money savings power, especially when it comes to bigger and more expensive items. By continuing these habits throughout my life I have been able to save little by little, which over time equated to a nice nest egg.
Here are 30 simple money habits that encourage big savings:
- Get a hobby (Refer to this list to find a cheap or free one)
- Make & keep a budget (here’s a free budget sheet)
- Avoid using the credit card if you can’t pay cash
- Set up automatic monthly money transfers from your checking to your savings account
- Order water at restaurants
- Don’t order appetizers or dessert with your meals
- Order one of the least expensive meals you’ll enjoy on the menu
- Order menu items a la carte instead of the whole meal
- Avoid alcohol
- Don’t smoke or abuse drugs
- Combine multiple errands in one trip
- Avoid drink soda
- Limit going to the grocery store to once a week or longer, if you don’t live near your grocer
- Meal plan (get your free weekly menu)
- Make a grocery list and stick to it
- Cut coupons for items you already use
- Eat at home
- Have meatless Mondays (our go to dinner is pancakes & eggs)
- Instead of eating out invite family & friends over for dinner or a pot luck
- DIY / Fix things yourself when appropriate
- Check Craigslist or local online swap meet groups before buying items new
- Sleep on Big purchases before you pull the trigger
- Buy “new” clothes at thrift stores
- Borrow movies, books, magazines from the library
- Only see movies in theater during matinee times
- Watch TV using a TV antenna
- Turn off the lights in your house when you’re not using them or in the room
- Unplug any small appliances not in use (cell phone charger, toaster, lamp, blender, computer or laptop, TV, etc.)
- Unplug larger appliances not in use (microwave & dryer) if you don’t use them too often
- Wash & detail your vehicle yourself as needed, instead of using a car wash
I know some of these sound weird and maybe they are, but if you adopt some of these habits as your own you may just see money sticking around when it wasn’t before.
Now some of these habits of mine may be harder than others, especially depending on the person. But remember not to let a challenge scare you from doing it. Also, there is nothing wrong with taking baby steps.
Start with one and move forward from there. Once the new habit becomes easier is when you know you’re ready for another.
True change takes time, so be patient with yourself as you journey to save money.
Comment below: What are some of your habits that save you money?
Tawnya is the founder of The Dancing Dollar, a blog about frugality & personal finance. She writes about how frugal living can help other individuals & families live [happily] below their means. She & her husband are on the path to pay off their home in less than half the time. Click here to learn more.