50 Things to Know to Save Money

50 Things to Know to Save MoneyOne thing that many people struggle with is learning how to get out of debt.  If you are drowning in your monthly bills and do not know how you will ever get out of debt then you need help.  The only way that you can help yourself is to figure out how to stop spending and how you can get out of debt fast.

Debt can be one of the hardest things on any relationship and more marriages fail because of issues with finances than any other reason.  This is because finances can be a major struggle and can easily cause you to have a lot of headaches with constant phone calls and letters in the mail.  Not being able to get out of debt is one of the worst feelings that anyone will ever have.

Instead of stressing about getting out of debt all of the time it is possible for you to learn the secrets you need to know to have your own financial security.  It starts with you learning how to examine things in your life and figuring out what is necessary and what is extra and something that you do not really need.    By learning these things you will be able to finally put yourself on the road to financial freedom.

1.  Use Cash to Make Purchases

One of the best suggestions to anyone struggling with debt and trying to save money is to work on a cash system.  There are many ways to do this but the best is to leave credit and debit cards at home.  Take just enough cash to get what you plan on purchasing and never purchase anything that is not on your list.

2.  Learn Mark Down Days and Make Those Shopping Days

Grocery stores have mark down days where they will discount fresh produce and meats.  Some grocery stores mark down every day and others mark down on certain days of the week.  Make a mark down day your shopping day.  Watch expiration dates as many time these products need to be cooked in a day or two.

3.  Do Not Spend More than You Earn

Make a budget and watch it closely.  Do not spend more than you earn so that you do not go over your budget.  Leave a little wiggle room with your bills so that you can have enough money to spare.

4.  Know a Good Percentage to Save

You need to be aware of the amount of money that you should be saving.  This means that once you no longer have debt you should be saving 50-60% of your income so that you have a secure financial future.  Saving less than this might sound more appealing at the time but if you were to lose your job or want to retire early this would be a great way to get there.

5. Know How Much You Owe

Sit down with a notebook and keep track of how much you owe on each debt.  Keep track of what you owe so that you can make sure that you are getting out of debt with your payments.  Watch debts and work hard to pay them off as quickly as possible starting with the smallest debt and working your way up to where you only have one debt.

6. Keep Debt to Less than 25% of Your Income

You should attempt to have debt payments for loans and credit cards to less than 25% of your monthly income so that you can easily work to pay them off each month.  This will help you by cutting interest payments that you make.  Plus with just one loan and one credit card you can more easily climb out of debt.

7. Build an Emergency Account

You need to create an emergency fund that is equal to 6 months of your income when you have additional money come in.  This is a great way to be able to have security in a job market that is not very secure.  In addition an emergency account is great to have if you get ill or have a sudden emergency that leaves you out of work.

8. Cut Up Credit Cards

Get rid of all of your credit cards but one.  Cut them up and call to close the accounts.  By doing this you will increase the amount of money that you save and you will not be tempted to use the accounts even without the cards.

9. Talk to a Credit Counselor

While it should be a last measure, if you have no other way to get out of debt or feel too overwhelmed a credit counselor can help you get your debts in control.  The reason you should wait and use this only if you have no other options is that while it will not affect your FICO score it will show up.  This would show to borrowers that you have had credit issues in the past.

10. Never Rely on Credit Cards for Necessities

While it is tempting to put yourself in debt to live outside your means it is never a good idea.  Necessities should be budgeted so that you are never required to borrow money for them.  If you have to borrow money for the basics then you will never be able to get out of debt.

11. Do Not Eat Out

Eating out is one of the most wasteful ways that you can spend your money.  Instead of eating out all of the time pick 1 or 2 nights a month or possibly even 1 night a week when you can eat out.  This is going to decrease the amount of money that you spend on things and will help you to get your budget under control.

12. Choose Entertainment that is Free

If you need some type of entertainment there are plenty of things that you can do.  Instead of spending money on entertainment find ways that you can be entertained for free.  Choose options that allow for you to be easily entertained and will not cost you anything.  Family game night with frozen pizzas or family movie night with popcorn are both great ideas.  Date night could include a bottle of wine and back massages.  There are many options and ones that everyone can plan with a little creativity.

13. Never Use the Emergency Account to Pay Off Your Credit Cards

An emergency account is something that you need.  Do not pay off credit cards with the money that is in these accounts.  The credit cards should be paid from your regular budget so you never have to worry.

14. Plan for Future Expenses

Think about things that you would like to do or have money to purchase in the future and plan for them.  If you plan well for future expenses you will not end up going into debt for them.  This can help you save a considerable amount of money over time.

15. Make Sure You are On the Same Page with Your Spouse/Partner

Everyone who is part of a household should be on the same page.  It is important to be in agreement about spending money and to know where every dollar is going.  By doing this you will be able to save money over time and you really will be happier.

To read all 50 Tips please read 50 Things to Know to Save Money: Get Out of Debt and Start Saving by Amanda Walton.  I encourage you to borrow the book for free with Amazon Prime

50 Things to Know to Save Money