17 Methods That Helped Young People Make a Fortune – Do you ever feel like there’s too much “month” left at the end of your paycheck? Where does it all go anyway? Well, if your money is having a hard time finding its way into your savings account,then looks like you should…
1. Tell your money where to go
It’s going somewhere, so you might as well decide where that is. Whether you use a spreadsheet like Excel or jot it down by hand, budgeting is essential. Make a list of all of your expenses in one column and how much you earn in another. Sort your expenses into categories (rent/utilities, groceries/personal expenses, and fun extra stuff), and make cuts where you can. Most banks these days have an app with budgeting tips and categorized records of your purchases– that’ll help too!
2. Track your money daily
It’s great if you make a monthly budget – it’s not great if you only look at it once a month. Set aside a specific time each day to check your transactions and see if you’re on track. It doesn’t have to be an inconveniently long time – 60 seconds is enough. You can call it your Midday Money Minute!
3. Eat at home
The average American spends $230 a month just on eating out! Fast food may seem cheap, but cooking at home is way more wallet-friendly. The internet is full of recipes for all kinds of tastes and diets: gluten-free, vegan, keto– the list goes on and on! Plan your meals and make grocery lists based on needed ingredients. When you go grocery shopping, stick to your list, and don’t make unnecessary purchases. Packing a lunch with the leftovers of last night’s dinner will also encourage you to kindly decline when your co-workers ask, “Wanna get take-out?”
4. Stay up with sales
Whether it’s groceries or clothing, the Sunday paper advertises when there’s a good sale going on. Purchase more expensive foods like meat at a discounted price, and plan your menu around that. Buy in bulk when you can. Don’t eat meat? Fruit and veggies go on sale at different times of the year too! And don’t be shy about cutting coupons if you’re looking to save – that’s what they’re for anyway!
5. Go thrifting
If your brain is already on Sales Mode, then kick the savings up by hitting some thrift stores at the right time. Look for sales at popular thrift shops on their site or posted up in their stores. Holidays are also ideal for discounts. If you’re not ready to buy second-hand, off-price department stores like Marshall’s sell new name-brand clothing with huge mark-downs. I’d recommend getting items that last forever, such as denim jeans, jackets, and shorts!
6. …But always shop alone
I know, sounds boring! But think of it this way: have you ever gone shopping with a friend, and they say, “Oh,that looks great on you!You should get it. ”Although, you really aren’t a huge fan of how those jeans make your tush look, and you probably would’ve talked yourself out of getting them had you been alone. But you feel good about the compliment, so in the cart they go!
7. Spend your cash and keep the change
Instead of going to the store with your debit card in hand, try withdrawing cash in the exact amount you budgeted to spend. This will keep you in check if you’re tempted to make an impulse purchase. If you don’t have the cash on hand for certain products, they don’t go home with you. Likewise, if you get change back, start putting it in a jar. Setting aside loose change quickly adds up. When the jar is full, you can decide what to do with it – either save or spend it on a special project!
8. Cut the cable
The average person spends about $85 a month on cable. Satellite owners spend a bit more, topping off at $100 per month. This could be part of the reason why streaming services like Netflix have skyrocketed. Now similar sites like the 6-bucks-a-month Hulu are adding competition and driving price seven lower!Other perks include being able to watch episodes from your favorite shows on demand. If you’re in college, many of these sites even have special discounts for you!
9. Never buy new
You should go second-hand with your car too. A brand-new vehicle loses 10% of its value during the first month of ownership, beginning immediately after you drive it off the lot. On average, it’ll continue to decrease between 15-20% annually. Let’s say you purchase a new car for $30,000. After the first month, its value is down to $27,000. After the first year, it’s sitting at $24,000. In short, most people end up owing more than what the vehicle is actually worth. Buying a used car is a nice way to prevent that, even when it’s on the newer end of used!
10. Be smart with credit cards
If you have to use a credit card, get one that pays you. Look for a card that offers cash back rewards. For example, some offer the following deal: for every $100 you spend, you get $1 back. Work towards paying off the balance each month and maintain that 1% back on every purchase. As long as you pay off what you spend every month, you won’t accumulate any interest what so ever. Instead of losing money, you actually get money…as long as you’re responsible!
11. Have an emergency savings fund
With all the extra money you’ll soon be saving, you can put the surplus towards an emergency savings fund. The minimum amount for this account should be $1,000. This works as a safety net when unplanned things happen. Instead of swiftly swiping a credit card when your car breaks down and accumulating more debt, dip into your emergency savings fund. That’s what it’s there for. When the crisis is behind you, rinse and repeat, working your way back up to that $1,000 base amount.
12. Pay off debt
According to financial guru Dave Ramsey, once you have an emergency savings fund, you can begin paying off debt. The “debt snowball” refers to paying off your smallest debt first. For example, if you have a student loan in the amount of $6,000 and a remaining credit card balance of $12,000, start by knocking out the student loan debt. Once that’s done (say you were contributing $300 a month towards paying it off), you can roll that 300 towards your remaining credit balance. This helps you see progress faster, which then motivates you even more!
13. Give monthly towards your holiday savings
Don’t let December and all the holiday parties sneak up on you! Decide how much you want to spend per person at the beginning of the year. Let’s say there are 4 people in your family, and you’d like to get them each a gift valued at $50 or less. In order to have $200 to spend, you only need to save about $16 a month. You can do that! If your list is longer or you want to start shopping sooner, adjust accordingly. You can do the same with summer vacations.
14. Set specific savings goals
Going off those last two tips, did you notice I used specific examples with hard numbers? That’s because you’ll never save money if your goal is to simply “save money”. You need an exact step-by-step plan to work towards. You have X amount of student debt, you want to pay it off by Y time, so you’ll set aside Z dollars to achieve that goal. There’s no room left for uncertainty or excuses, only action!
15. Accept hand-me-downs
There’s no greater bargain than receiving a whole new wardrobe for free, without having to step foot in a retail store! If certain hand-me-downs don’t work for you, simply pass them along. Those formerly white t-shirts? Yeah, you don’t have to keep those, but thanks for offering!
16. Live with your parents
Before you gasp, hear me out. You’d be in good company, as roughly 23% of young adults currently live at home with their parents. Many of them are moving back in after college. Remember the whole thing about paying off debt? Living with your folks can also help you save money for the future, whatever your plans might be. Owning your own home, traveling and seeing the world, it’s up to you!
17. Take advantage of your local library
And other free services! A receipt from the Wichita Public Library recently went viral, showing a total savings of $7,078. 76 for a family of 6 that visited the library weekly. The library kept track from the moment they started checking out books. Many other libraries use the same system, thus encouraging more people to visit. Museums and zoos typically have community days or nights, when their entrances are FREE. Check their social media pages for those days and details. Pretty cool huh?