5 easy tips for saving money right away
Saving money can be easy when you have a plan and a couple of tips to follow. Not a lot of effort and actual results.
1) The meal plan🥘
If you take a look at the amount of money you spend on groceries, you’ll probably be surprised and wonder “how is this happening?”. It’s a pretty common thing, so you’re not alone. That’s because it's (a bit too) easy to walk around and grab things that you don’t necessarily need, but they look good and they’re affordable so...what could the damage be? Once in a while, close to none, but you can actually save quite a bit in the long run.
One golden rule to help with overspending at the grocery store is: never shop hungry. Now that we got that out of the way, there’s more you can do to insure your groceries budget is under control. Meal planning! I know, it sounds like a fair bit of work, but when looking to save more without changing your lifestyle or compromising on something else, this easy tip can make a big difference. Start with the ingredients that are already in your pantry (yay for no food waste!), and design a couple of yummy dishes from there on. Meal planning doesn’t only mean that you’ll head to the store with a list that you should follow - and not get distracted from. It also means that you’ll probably end up eating healthier. Double score!
2) The endless subscriptions📺
Let’s face it, we’re all guilty of having one too many subscriptions that we probably don’t need anymore, but simply never canceled. If you’re paying monthly for Netflix, Amazon Prime and HBO, but really just spend 90% of your time on Netflix, it may be time to say goodbye to the other 2. This applies to everything, of course. Make sure you have an easy overview of all your recurring payments, so you can easily sort what should stay and what should go. If you’re a bunq user, you can already find them all under Subscriptions, on your Home screen.
Here’s another tip: never select “auto-renew” when signing up for something, to make sure you don’t get stuck with things you completely forgot about. If it turns out that it’s a service you’d like to keep, go ahead and make that choice later. Not able to start a subscription without auto-renewal on? Simply set a reminder for yourself to decide if you actually want to pay for another month or year.
3) The automated savings🤑
We all want to have some money saved, either for fun things we love or for emergencies - ideally, for both. Saving a specific amount every time you get paid is a great way to ensure you’re on the right track, but sometimes it can be tricky. There’s months where you feel like you could make an exception, or months where you may be tempted to put aside less than you actually planned. Bottom line, it’s psychologically easier not to save than to spend your savings. That’s why automating the process is an important piece of the puzzle. There are many apps that can help with this, and if you’re a bunq user, there are 2 features that will make sure you’re successful in achieving your financial goals.
First, automatically sort your salary when you get paid, so you can put money aside in a different account that doesn’t have to do with your daily spending. Second, you can activate Auto Save, and the app will round up every payment to the next EUR, making sure the remaining amount goes into your savings account. That’s a pretty easy way of saving every day without even thinking about it.
4) The better deals🙌
Taking small steps is easy and a great way to start, but if you take a look at your annual banking statement you’ll probably notice that a lot of money goes towards large recurring expenses. Those can be mortgages, paying off debt, bills or insurances. Doing some research about who offers the best offers on the market for things like this may not be your ideal fun day, but it can truly save you hundreds throughout the year. If you’ve been with a company for a long time, chances are you don’t know about their cheaper plans or better deals for new clients. Give them a call and ask about your options, or simply cancel and restart some of these contracts.
Thankfully, nowadays there are plenty of comparison platforms that give you a quick overview of the market and what’s out there for you. You can also check out the Deals section in the bunq app and see if there’s a discount for you in there!
5) The spending tracker💸
At the end of the day, no matter how many smart tricks you use to save money, one thing is key: you have to always know where your money goes in order to know when and how to save. Having all your money in one account makes this pretty difficult. You can keep track of your monthly expenses in many ways, from colorful Excel sheets to apps that help you categorize. bunq users get 25 sub-accounts to split their money for every need, and all their payments get automatically categorized too.
Not sure how much you’re supposed to be spending on things anyway? Check out the 50/30/20 method. Plan 50% of your incoming money for needs: groceries, rent or mortgages, bills, insurance. The 30% goes on wants, things that make you happy: spa days, drinks with friends, movie nights. Save the remaining 20% straight away for the future, so you don’t get tempted throughout the month. Here’s a calculator that puts this in actual numbers for you really quick.
There we go! 5 easy tips for saving money right away.🌈
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