If you could save $100 a month without sacrificing your lifestyle wouldn’t you do it? Of course you would. We’re showing you how to save money habitually so it never feels like a chore.
Awareness of overspending is the first step toward saving — Start by taking a snapshot of your expenses. Most credit and debit cards offer personalized reports that breakdown your monthly spending, so try using one card for all purchases for an entire month. This way you can see your expenses all in one place.
But what if you suck at budgeting? Here are some effortless tips to saving:
- Link your paycheck to a savings account — If you get two paychecks a month, have your bank automatically transfer $50 per check to a savings account. You won’t even miss the money, and it’s an easy way to make $100 bucks.
- Increase your income tax withholdings — Increase your withholdings, just slightly. When you file your tax returns you’ll get a bigger refund. It’s easy—just ask your H.R. person for help. Again, you don’t even have to think about it. There are many more tricks for saving. Don’t hesitate to get creative.
- Go cash-only — This is great for daily out-of-pocket expenses like lunch; you can’t overspend what you don’t have.
- Start a piggy bank — Deposit your pocket change in a jar every night. Cash in the contents every month and you can probably skip an A.T.M. withdrawal. Meanwhile, your stash will regenerate. Even if it only nets out to $5 a week that’s still $20 a month closer to your goal.
- Keep a guilty pleasure fund so you don’t zing your credit card on a getaway. Put a dollar in every time for every time you do indulge.( I think it’s important not to deprive yourself, which could lead to spontaneous overspending. Instead, set some money aside for fun activities. One way to build this up is to put a dollar in a jar every time you swear, or throw $5 in a jar every pay day. When a concert or trip comes up, use this money to guide your budget.