You may think that things are too tight right now for you to be able to start saving money for the future. The truth is there are always ways to save money. Whether you contribute more money to a 401k or cut unneeded expenses, you can save money on a tight budget.
Up Your 401k Contribution
The money you contribute for a 401k comes out of your paycheck before your income is taxed. This means that, depending on your tax bracket, you may be able to contribute more money to the account and still bring home the same amount on your paycheck. Crunch the numbers and see how an increase in your contribution will affect your income.
Pay Off Debt
Debt is one of the largest money suckers there is. Instead of forking over a large percentage of your paycheck to debt for the rest of your life, work to get out of debt. Stop making charges to your credit cards and use the snowball method. Pay off the smallest debt and then put the extra money towards the next smallest debt until all your debts are paid off.
Cut Unneeded Expenses
Do you really need satellite service? No. There are so many things you can watch for free or at a much cheaper price. For example, there are tons of interesting videos on YouTube that can be watched for free. You can also get a media player so you can watch YouTube on your TV – if you don’t have a smart TV. You can also watch unlimited movies through Netflix and popular shows through Hulu. Both subscriptions cost less than $15 a month each. You can end up with at least $100 a month to put towards savings if you do this one small cut.
Round Up Purchases in Your Check Register
When you’re balancing your checkbook, round up all your purchases. It may not seem like much, but after a few years, you’ll have a lot more in your bank account than you thought. You can round up to the nearest dollar or the nearest increment of five – whatever works best for you.
Do a Savings Challenge
Last, but not least, don’t get overwhelmed by saving money. Instead, do a savings challenge. There are several to choose from. The 52 week savings challenge has you put a $1 into savings the first week, $2 the second week, and so on and so on until you reach week 52, where you put in $52 that week. It allows you to get used to the idea of saving money without feeling the strain.
Even if you’re on a teeny tiny budget, you can save money. It just takes a bit of work and making the decision of what’s more important – a healthy savings account or unnecessary expenses.
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