You may be looking at your progressively empty wallet throughout the week and realizing that…there isn’t really that much left by the end of it. If you want to be able to set something aside, you need to cut back on your expenses and put together a weekly budget. Here’s how to do it!
You spend the most money on groceries when you shop unprepared, and when you shop hungry, because you end up just throwing everything in the cart – and there goes your weekly budget. You’ll just have to eat ramen for the rest of the week. If you want to stick to your budget plan, make a meal plan and a list and shop smart – that means buying in bulk when you can (that makes it cheaper!) and buying when there are sales and offers.
That Starbucks habit is slowly killing all of us (and making the nice people at Starbucks very rich), not only because of how much sugar there is in their drinks, but also because that’s some expensive coffee. You can just as easily make coffee at home and take it to work in a thermos. Invest in a good one and it’ll keep your coffee hot for hours. You’ll be shocked at how much you save.
Of course it’s easier to just be lazy and order in – and it’s still ok, from time to time – but those expenses add up. Something you will find in any list with money saving tips is to just start cooking at home. It’s not that hard, it’s fun, and it’s infinitely tastier and healthier than getting take-out. You can even turn it into a fun activity with your spouse or friends!
If you like to travel, here’s a hack for getting things cheaper – everything is available at a lower price, as long as you book in advance. It’s off-season, the interest for these things is lower, and hotels and airlines are looking to make a buck by offering you a sweet deal. So, if you’re planning your summer vacation, start making your bookings now, and save hundreds. You may even be able to afford a more expensive vacation than you normally would have been able to.
Look, having a car is extremely convenient, but it’s also killing our planet, your waistline, and your budget. Maintaining a car is expensive, between gas, parking, and all the associated costs, so why not make a healthy choice and take your bike to work, or walk, if it’s close enough? Fresh air will do you good in the morning!
A lot of people are horrified at the thought of using coupons, but it’s basically free money you’re leaving on the table. All you have to do is check out the paper or the online website and see if there’s anything you’re interested in. We’re not saying you should turn into one of those ladies from Extreme Couponing, but if you can save $1 on your favorite cereal, why not?
A great way to stick to your weekly budget, short of creating a budget worksheet, is to always check out deals online. Why pay full-price, when there’s always some deal going on, or a huge discount? The money you save really adds up, and you may become eligible to get a mortgage or some other major purchase you want. You’ll need to check your credit score with credit score providers such as Identity Force, AnnualCreditReport.com, Identity Guard, Experian, or MyFICO, and then start saving for that down payment.
If you’re having trouble keeping track of your expenses and a weekly budget isn’t helping, then perhaps a budget app is what you need. That way, your expenses will be automatically tracked and you’ll be forced to see just how much you impulse-buy. The total will horrify you, and that’s precisely the point.
As you can see, committing to a weekly budget isn’t that hard. You just need some smart tips and a little determination!