There is no get quick-rich scheme to save money. It takes discipline and hard work to reach your financial goals. Whether you’re saving up for a house deposit, a car or a holiday trip, there are ways to help you budget effectively so you can stop living paycheque-to-paycheque.
According to a study conducted by UBank last year, it was found that 86% of the study participants did not know how much they were spending. Peter Foley, Financial director of Thridview mentioned that people felt overwhelmed by the idea of saving and found it difficult to do.
The thought of saving doesn’t have to be scary. In fact, it could make you a happier person. To become a better saver, knowing what you earn and how much outgoing expenses you have to pay for is a good starting point. Skillstalk shares some of the top tips to help you feel in control of your spending habits and encourage you to save towards your future goals.
Automate your savings
Before you start paying off your bills, put away some of your paycheque to a high-interest savings account, or your superannuation fund. Putting your savings on autopilot can encourage you to not touch the money since you have found purpose for it. Some high-interest savings account even discourage you from taking money out as you will lose the bonus interest applied to the amount you’ve saved. A good tip is to label your savings account, so you know what your end goal is. If it is a house deposit, name your savings account as that so you’re more motivated to add to that account and refrain taking money from it.
Domino your debts
Whether it’s a mortgage, car loan or credit card debt, it’s important that you try and tackle any balance owing to avoid interest. Make a list of your current debts and put them in order where the top debt is the one with the highest interest rate. Start by tackling that debt first and move on to the next balance owing. This is known as the “stack method” and in a way, works like dominoes - once you knock back one debt, it’s possible to knock out the rest.
Get yourself a side hustle
If you’re a cross-skilled professional who is able to write, manage social content or simply have excellent customer service skills, you may have time to pick up a side hustle and earn a bit of extra cash on the side. A side hustle is the perfect way to boost your savings and can even be an opportunity for you to start a small business on the side aligned with your passion and interests. The income you earn from it can motivate you towards your savings goals while also working across interesting projects in your spare time. Just make sure your side hustle does not interrupt your day job and refrain taking calls from your clients within your scheduled work hours.
Give your money purpose
In a Forbes Article, one effective way of saving money is to find out the “why” of your savings. It is an empowering move to give your money purpose because it helps you adapt stronger habits and can even encourage you to minimise spending. If you know that you’re paying for a gym membership and you rarely use all the extras included, downsize to just a basic one. Not using Netflix as much anymore? Cancel your subscription. Being strategic in your approach can help you cut your spending in half if you just track what money is being taken out of your account. By giving each expense a purpose could help you adapt a more frugal mindset when it comes to your spending.
Start meal prepping for work
Bringing lunch to work can save you about $50 a week. By meal prepping, you can put away that cash to savings instead of splurging it on the “cheap” lunch deal you managed to snag during your work break. Not only is this better for your wallet but it can also improve your overall health too. You also save yourself time by not heading out of the office and queueing up for your meal at the food court, giving you the opportunity to socialise with your colleagues in the break room instead. If you’re pressed for time and don’t want to think about what to make, check out some of these healthy, quick and easy lunch recipes here.
Give yourself a reward if you reach a particular milestone
Whether you’ve just paid off a large chunk of debt, or reached a milestone in your savings, there is no harm in treating yourself. However, be careful not to splurge on big-ticket items that could put you into debt again. Rewarding yourself doesn’t have to be expensive. It could even be as simple as eating out for lunch because you brought food from home the entire month at work. If you really do want to treat yourself in a big way without biting into your budget, open up a separate savings account and put away some money until you reach the goal amount of your purchase and buy that item guilt-free.
Want to boost your savings even more?
Did you know the best way you could boost your savings is to either get a promotion for work or move on to a role that has a higher salary bracket? If you’re currently in a job where there is no room for growth and have the desire to further develop your skills to benefit your career, check out the courses offered here at Upskilled.
With the courses being delivered online, you can study at your own pace in the comfort of your own home, making it possible for you to balance your job and other life commitments. Upskilled offers courses in project management, administration and business, events and more, meaning you are spoiled for choice in terms of the qualifications you can achieve. This could then help you accomplish both your career and savings goals at the same time.