Sometimes the most challenging thing about saving money is getting started. This guide to saving money can help you step-by-step to develop a realistic and straightforward strategy so that you can save for all of your short-term and long-term savings goals.
Record your expenses
The first step in starting to save money is determining how much you are spending. Keep track of all your expenses; That means every cup of coffee, household item, and cash tip.
Once you have the information, organize the numbers by categories, such as gas, grocery shopping, and mortgage, and get the total for each. Use your bank and credit card statements to ensure everything is correct and that you didn’t forget anything.
Tip: Get a free-spending monitor to help you get started. Choosing a digital program or an app can help automate part of this task. Bank of America customers can use the Spending and Budgeting tool, automatically categorizing their transactions to make budgeting easier on the mobile app or online.
If you are saving for retirement or your children’s education, consider putting that money in an investment account, such as an Individual Retirement Account (IRA) or a 529 plan. Although investments come with risks and can lose money, too They present the opportunity to grow when the market grows, and they might be convenient if you plan for an event well in advance. See step no. 6 for details.
Tip: Set a small, achievable, short-term goal for something fun and big enough that you don’t have the cash to pay for, like a new smartphone or holiday gifts. Reaching smaller goals, and enjoying the nice reward you’ve saved for, can give you a psychological boost that makes the rewarding feeling of saving more immediate and strengthens the habit.
Budget for savings
Once you have an idea of how much you spend in a month, you can begin to organize the expenses you recorded and establish a budget that you can live with. Your budget should give you an idea of how your expenses compare to your income to plan for your expenses and limit overspending. Be sure to consider expenses that occur regularly, but not every month, such as car maintenance.
Tip: Include a savings category, and try to save 10-15 percent of your income.
Find ways to cut your expenses.
If your expenses are so high that you can’t save as much as you’d like, it may be time to cut back. Identify nonessential categories that you can spend less on, like entertainment and eating out. Find ways to save on your monthly fixed expenses like television and cell phone expenses, too.
Recycling is a perfect way to save money and contribute to the care of the planet. By reusing containers at home, taking your bags to the supermarket, or reusing the water to water the plants, you are helping your pocket and the environment.
Do it yourself
From decorations for a birthday to remodeling a room, you can do countless activities on your own and that do not require a high degree of technique. You can even find tutorials on the internet that will surely help you save in a fun and different way.
Try to keep track of the things you buy daily and identify which expenses are worthwhile. Sometimes we think that coffee or candy does not affect our pocket; But if we are in the habit of making small expenses every day, we will hurt our savings.
Saving not only allows you to achieve your personal and family goals; also, it is a way to secure your future and be prepared for any unforeseen event. Sometimes when we think about saving, we imagine complex actions that require enormous effort to obtain the results we expect. The truth is that it is possible to save money every day with simple techniques that will allow us to achieve our goals faster. Each person has a different method that adapts to their lifestyle, and Banco Pichincha offers alternatives such as creating a programmed savings account. You can choose a monthly amount that the Bank will save for you for as long as possible until you reach your objective.