How to start saving money (at any age!) - The Dime Turner

Official blog of Refresh Financial

Tips and Tricks For Beginner Savers

Saving money. It sounds easy. Just collect it and don’t spend it, right? Well, not quite. As simple as it sounds, it is often dependent on what is happening around us. Things get forgotten, unexpected expenses come up or we just plain lose steam and stop saving. So, how do we ensure success when we set out to start saving money? What are the secrets of successful savers? Here are a few steps to success if you are asking yourself how to start saving money:

How to start saving money tip # 1: Prioritize Your Expenses

The very first thing you should do is prioritize your expenses. Are there some you can lower or even eliminate? Ask yourself, when considering what you can live without, “is this more important to me right now, than financial security is in my future?”. If there are sacrifices you can make, make them! They are not forever. The more you sacrifice now, the less you will have to sacrifice in the future. Do you eat out too much? Do you drive when you could walk, ride your bike, or take transit? Do you need your second car or can you live without it? Once you know where you can cut down, you can calculate how much money you are no longer going to be spending and plan to use that to start your savings.

How to start saving money tip # 2: Get Rid of High-Interest Debts

Next, you want to get rid of your high-interest debts. Pay them down as quickly as you possibly can, because the longer you carry these debts, the more they are going to cost you. You will then be saving yourself hundreds and thousands in future interest. Bringing your debts down is going to enable you to start putting away the money you would be using to pay the huge minimum payments, as well. The best way to do this, so that you keep up momentum and avoid getting discouraged, is to set up automatic payments that are as big as you can manage. This way, you don’t have to remember.

How to start saving money tip # 3: Start High-Interest Savings

Once your debts are being paid down, you can then find yourself a high-interest savings account. Research the different savings accounts that are available to you in your area, taking into consideration things such as monthly fees, transaction fees, interest rate, minimum balance, and the reputation of the institution. Look for an account that will help your money work for you.

How to start saving money tip # 4: Automatic Transfers

Once you’ve set up your high-interest savings account, you should set up an automatic transfer each month. Set it at the amount you think you can save each month, and make it happen without you having to remember. Make sure this transfer comes out on payday, so you don’t even have enough time with the money to consider spending it on anything else. If you set this up, your money in your savings account will grow quickly, without you really paying much attention.

How to start saving money tip # 5: New Income

Now, just because you’ve set up your automatic transfers to your savings account, doesn’t mean that’s the fastest you can save. Rather, you need to start to look at every new source of money as an opportunity to see your savings grow faster. You can also sift through your life and pinpoint places where you might be able to make extra cash. You could sell big ticket items you don’t really use much anymore, or you could find yourself a secondary income. Whether you’re a hobbyist who can sell your wares at a weekend flea market, or you start a successful YouTube channel, there are plenty of ways to earn a secondary source of income without it interfering with your day job. All this extra money is gravy, meaning you can live without it. So put it all in your savings and watch your net worth soar.

How to start saving money tip # 6: Daily Check Ups

The next part is probably the hardest part, to be honest. You need to look at the state of your finances every day. Login to your bank and credit card accounts and look at your balances. You need to know, every single day, where you stand down to the very last cent. Looking at these things every day makes it a lot harder to just ignore, and it tends to force people to be more responsible with their money. Further, you’re going to see your debt falling, your savings growing and that just fuels the desire to save more and pay off more. It gets you excited about heading in the right direction when you get to see it every single day. If you have a slip-up, it’s even more important to face the facts and look at your accounts so you can’t just shrug it off. Looking at it and seeing it will make you want to correct it. Set a reminder on your smartphone for the same time every day, to check your balances everywhere. You can’t be in control of your finances if you don’t even know what they are.

How to start saving money tip # 7: Wait and See

Finally, when you’re about to spend money on something, whether it’s an expensive item, a costly trip, or even just a dinner out at a fancy restaurant, give yourself a day or two to think about it first. You’d be surprised how even just twenty-four hours of reflection can make you see that you do not need this item, and you would so much rather have a secure financial future. A lot of where we go wrong with spending money comes from a desire for instant gratification. It’s the ability to put that gratification off until a later date that separates the self-made wealthy people from people who continue to struggle with their finances every day. If you can master this skill, you will have wealth in your lifetime.

What are some of the methods you use to help you save money? Let us know in the comments!

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