If you need to free up cash in your budget, there are a few simple changes that can save you $50 this month. People who cry broke at the end of the month often wonder where their money goes. This might be the million dollar question. However, putting cash back into their budget can be as simple as eliminating a few costly habits. Here are seven simple changes that can save you $50 this month.
1. Carpool a Few Days a Week
You might enjoy your quiet time to and from work each day, but if you're interested in changes that can save you $50 this month, consider carpooling with a coworker two or three days a week. You can save on gas, which results in fewer trips to the gas station.
2. Brew Your Own Coffee
Dunkin' Donuts or Starbucks might have your flavor of choice, but if you spend $3 a day on coffee, that's approximately $15 a week or $60 a month. It's certainly cheaper to buy your own coffee maker and brew your own coffee at home. And since gourmet coffee and delicious creamers are widely available, you don't have to skimp on flavor.
3. Take Your Lunch to Work
There's nothing wrong with the occasional lunch date with a coworker. If however, this becomes a habit, you can easily spend $50 to $100 a month just on lunch. If you’re looking to add $50 back into your monthly budget, start brown bagging your lunch.
4. Lose Your Gym Membership
Your gym membership might only cost $30 a month, but once you add in the additional cost of on-site childcare ($2-$3 per child) and fees for classes or personal training sessions, working out can cost you $50 (or more) a month. However, you can get the same results at home. Purchase a few workout DVDs, ride your bike or invest in a good pair of walking shoes. You can exercise at home or around your neighborhood for a fraction of the cost.
5. Get Rid of Cable
Between Hulu and Netflix, there is no reason to pay $50 or more a month for cable. Ditch your cable service to free up money in your budget, or downgrade to a cheaper plan with fewer stations.
6. Stop Smoking
It's a hard habit to break, but if you’re a heavy smoker who goes through at least three packs a week, you're probably spending over $50 a month on cigarettes. This addiction not only hits your pocket hard, it has a tremendous impact on your health, increasing your risk of heart disease and stroke. To break free, give nicotine gum or the patch a try, or experiment with electronic cigarettes. Electronic cigarettes contain nicotine, but not tobacco and other harmful chemicals.
7. Learn How to Cook
If you don't have the best cooking skills, you might prefer eating out during the week. This routine is fast and convenient, but it's not cheap. It’s definitely pricier to eat out daily. However, you can add $50 or more back into your budget by purchasing a cookbook or experimenting with different online recipes.
As you can see, adding money back into your budget isn’t a difficult task. It does require sacrifice and determination. However, any sacrifice is worth the result.
What simple steps have you taken to free up cash?