8 Smart Tips on How to save Money ...

How to Save Money is a question many people are asking. Everyone needs a holiday, a better house or a new car, but how do you achieve these goals? Want to know the best ways of save money? It’s no great secret, it’s mostly common sense. With a few simple ideas, you can easily start saving money. The tips here concentrate on how you can start saving, monitoring your spending and how to save money by cutting costs which will hopefully help you to maximize savings. Here are 8 smart tips on how to save money.

1. Start a New Savings Account

A great way to start saving money is to set aside a small sum of money from your income. Decide on a small amount to begin with, an amount that you won’t miss. Set up an entirely new savings account so that the money is separated from your other income and monthly outgoings. Set up a direct debit for the day that your salary hits your account. Try this for several months and if you can afford it try increasing the amount by $10-15 dollars each week. You’ll be surprised how quickly your money will start to stack up and how quickly you can save money.

2. Motivation

Stay motivated with your savings. Log on regularly and watch your savings account build up. If you are saving for a holiday or house, put a photo up on your wall so that you can visualize your goal. Motivation is key when you want to learn how to save money the smart way.

3. Look for Alternatives

In order to save money you need to see where you are spending and where you can afford to make cut backs. Start a spreadsheet of your monthly outgoings, note down all the monthly bills such as rent, insurance and phone bill, etc. Over the month write down anything you additionally spend money on – nights out, a take away or meal out at a restaurant. You’ll probably quickly see where all your money goes and how to save through the course of the month. Start by cutting out something like that night out at a restaurant and instead choose a great recipe and cook that at home. Rather than going for a night out every week, opt to stay home and invite a few friends over. If you do decide to go out, have a few drinks at home first or better still find a bar that has a happy hour so you can take advantage of 2 for 1 drink offers.

4. Make Cutbacks

If you really want to know how to save money, look at the spreadsheet you have created with your outgoings. What are the monthly outgoings you can do without? Do you really need that expensive gym membership? How often do you really go anyway, once maybe twice a month? Enlist a friend who is motivated to get fit and get out in your local park, go jogging, cycling or walking together. Chances are you will enjoy it more than forcing yourself into a sweaty gym and the best part – it’s free!

5. Combine Your Bills

Re-evaluate how to save money by combining bills. Often you can package your home phone, internet and mobile phone with one company. If you ask to be put through to the cancellation department of these companies, they will often fall over backwards to give you the best possible deal in order to retain you as a customer. Often post-pay mobile plans offer limitless free phone calls – remember to use your free minutes rather than adding to your costs and making calls from your landline. That said, some companies offer great free deals on calls from your home phone -- if you are only an occasional mobile phone user do you really need a mobile phone plan? If your contract has expired then consider the option of a pay as you go plan, you may be surprised how much money you can save. If you call your local insurance company they too may be able to demonstrate how to save by combining home, contents and car insurance.

6. Lose the Luxuries

It may sound obvious but cut back on some of the more luxurious items in your shopping basket. Don’t be pretentious about a supermarket's own brand. Do you realize how you can save money on the simplest grocery items? For instance, there are probably about 30 different brands of milk available in the local supermarket. How different can these products be, milk is milk surely? Consider buying the home brand version and you can save as much as $2.50 per 2 litre carton depending on where you shop. That will really start to add up over the course of the year, so it's great when you're learning how to save money.

7. Get Rid of Superfluous Stuff

Have a clear out of your wardrobe and under your bed. Firstly, you’ll be surprised at how many items of clothing you have never even worn. Even if you only make a few dollars by selling it somewhere like eBay, as least you are making money and not spending money. Next time you are shopping, reconsider buying that top that seems like a bargain and consider how it might save you money to occasionally deny yourself that treat.

8. Moderate Your Alcohol Use

Try to cut down on drinking – keep a record of how many units you consume per week and then try cutting out at least a third of these drinks. Not only will you save money but you may also find that you start to lose some weight. It's easy to learn how to save money and improve your lifestyle!

I hope some of these 8 smart tips on how to save money have made you realize it might be easier than you think. They will help bring you one step closer to achieving your saving goals. Remember, learning how to save money isn't hard at all, it just takes time, effort, and discipline. What would be your top tip to colleagues and friends on how to save money?

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