Save money – simple guide
We all save money. We did it numerous times in our lives.
As children, we took some part of our allowance and saved to buy toys, or baseball cards, or a model car, or something else.
As adults we are saving to buy a new TV, laptop, sports equipment etc.
But in this post, we will talk about saving money for smart investments, rather than buying things.
In this article I am teach you how to do that, the importance of saving, and a lot more.
Let’s dive in.
Why you need to save money?
Before we begin to talk about ways to save money, we should first cover the reasons behind that.
And there is only one simple reason: to invest.
Saving money just to spend it is not very wise in terms of your future. Buying stuff that you don’t really need will make you pleased briefly, but it is a bad long term strategy.
And you should have a long term strategy!
The main reason for me to save money is so I can invest it in something that is going to bring me more money in the future. That sounds very reasonable, doesn’t it?
When you google why should I save money, you can get some pretty bad advice on that question. Most of the articles will advise you to save for down payment on the house, buy a new car, travel, spend, spend, and spend, just to spend it.
If you spend all you save on material items you will never make progress in life, and buying a house or an apartment by borrowing money from bank is a terrible investment, I can vouch for that.
So what do I invest in, you must be wandering?
There are so much better things to invest in, but this is not the topic of this discussion, I’ll write about that in another article.
I just want you to trust me on this, keep an open mind as you go through this article, and don’t forget that main reason for saving money is investing, not spending.
Start to save money
I will show you one uncommon way to save money.
The method that I am going to show you is from a book The richest man in Babylon and I encourage you to read it.
Here it goes.
When you receive your paycheck, immediately move no less than 10% aside and forget about it.
That’s how simple it is; I have implemented that strategy from the moment I have read it in that book, and saved a lot of money since.
I know that majority of you who read this already have a hard time keeping ends meet, but if you want to escape from this rat race that we proudly call life, there is no other way.
If this is your first time to come across this information, you are probably in denial right now, but as you read further, things will get crystal clear.
If you think that this can’t be achieved, I’m begging you to read the entire article and then make up your mind, it will cost you no more than 5 to 10 minutes of your time.
In the following parts of this article we will talk about how to cut on your spending.
In the recent study by CNBC, they found out that 65% of Americans save little or no money at all, and to most of them retirement might be just a dream. To me that is terrifying data.
Before we move on to the next part, just one quick tip. Avoid banks as much as possible.
It is much easier in 21th century to buy things with cards, but having cash in hand will make it more difficult for you to spend it.
And if you are lacking character to keep those 10% safe somewhere, give it to your mom, or someone trustworthy.
Managing your finances
So you took that 10% from your paycheck, and you have to live until next one. How to make it there without problems?
First thing you should do is put on paper exact amount you have to spend, and I’m talking about the money you have after paying taxes.
Second, precisely write down all the necessary monthly expenses that include paying house bills and rent, gas or public transportation expenses, food, debt payment (if you have one), etc.
If you have some money left after this, then see if you can spread the rest to some other expenses like cosmetics, house maintenance, car maintenance, new clothes, etc.
On the other hand, if your monthly income doesn’t cover your basic, necessary expenses, you are either very bad at math, or you have to change some part of the equation.
The equation is comprised of two factors, income and expenditure. You either have to reduce your spending or to increase your revenue.
Getting that extra money can be a challenging task, but you can easily learn how to live with very little money.
One way or another, you have to work on improving your income as well as to learn frugal living.
Firstly, let’s talk about the spending part.
Controlling your expenses
OK, you are looking at your balance sheet, and it doesn’t look good. You know that you are spending more than you can afford, but where to start, where can you improve?
In order to achieve self sufficient living, you must learn how to control your expenses.
Carpooling or using public transportation
If you have some colleagues who live near you, why not organize and share a ride, it’s a win-win situation for everyone. Whereas if you don’t, take a bus or a subway to work, and you’ll save some cash.
There is also one even more effective way, that is to walk or to ride a bike to work, if you don’t live far enough.
Use more cash
I mentioned earlier that you use cash more often. While you are using credit cards, you don’t get that sense of guilt as you would if your cash was leaving your hands. This is a neat little psychological trick, but very effective.
There is also another cool trick, if you are spending money online. Tape a note to your card that reminds you every time you want to order something.
Organize your shopping
Instead of buying groceries whenever you need something, write down all the things you need and go once or twice a week to supermarkets. You would be surprised how much money you can save this way.
Make your own coffee instead of buying takeaway
Yet another simple step, but also very effective. If you like your coffee on the go, buy a cheap thermos so that you can do that.
Buy cheaper clothes
There are lot of stores with decent priced goods, just search for them in your area. They are as good as those branded ones, but you are not paying for the brand.
Take lunch to work
Bring your lunch from home to work, and you could easily save 50-100$ every month, which is not a small sum.
You can see that there is a lot of ways to cut down on your expenses, with little to no extra work at all.
These are just some of the possibilities, and there are plenty more. If you do a bit of research, and implement those tactics, those small sums can add up to a substantial amount.
Below you can find additional resources for researching on this topic, and we will move on to the juicier part, how to generate more income.
Getting more cash
There are two ways to make more money every month.
First one is to get a better paying job, and the second one is to get another source of income, meaning another job.
Whatever option you choose, it’s fine, but even if you get a higher paid job, you should still work on securing another job.
And by securing I mean creating another job, where you are the boss. That should be the ultimate goal for all of us. If you want to work for someone else for the rest of your life, it’s still fine, but just know that in any case that is the wrong path.
So, how can you create another job, if you don’t have any money? That is where internet kicks in. Our beautiful web is full of great opportunities to make money.
In fact, more than 5% of all Americans work from home. That market is only going to rise in following years, so why not catch a wave while it is still rising?
You can still dream about opening a restaurant or a wood shop or anything else, but on a tight budget, best way to create a business is online, where you could start literally from zero, and make millions in 4 or 5 years.
Nobody said it was easy, in matter of fact everyone would be doing it if it was easy, but it is certainly easier than opening your own offline business, which costs tens of thousands of dollars.
I am not going to go into details on how to do that, it is for another article, but I will mention some ways you can do it.
If you are talented writer, you can write an e-book for free with online tools, and sell it on Amazon Kindle, or any other platform, or even your own website. Additionally, you can write content for other blogs and get paid.
If you are good with painting, or design, there are plenty opportunities for you out there. You can design logos for companies, book covers, draw comics, and a whole lot of other areas.
If you would like to learn web design, there are enormous free resources out there, like YouTube, Udemy, and bunch of other websites where you can learn for free how to create a website, and build your online business.
For this reason, I wrote a post that will teach you how to make money with web design.
If you like to take photos, you can buy some used camera online for couple hundred dollars, and start shooting. It is rather competitive business. Nevertheless, if you are passionate about it and you want to succeed, you will find a way.
If you are an expert in practically any area, you can start your own blog where you can help people with their problems, like law issues, or how to change oil on a BMW, literally anything.
Even if you are not an expert, but you are eager to learn more about some topic, there are indeed a lot of resources online for learning on a given topic.
That being said, if you want to learn more, check my article on generating income online.
If you made it this far, I’m sure you have some good knowledge about how to budget and save money, and some ideas how to generate more money.
This is only the beginning of your journey, and I hope that you choose the path of the winners, instead of path of the slaves.
You should continue to educate yourself in the field of finances and personal development by reading lots and lots of books, try different ways to make money online, or even combine some of them together.
Without continuous education you can never move from the point zero.
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Everything best and have a good day.