If you’re spending has gotten out of control, then you’re not alone. Each year, millions of people go into debt trying to pay for things they can’t afford. To break this financially destructive cycle and prevent it from spreading to other areas of your personal life, you need to control your money. In other words, your money shouldn’t control you.
In order to help you control your budget and actually start saving, here are 10 tips to help you out.
1. Get a Tax Free Saving Account
Tax free saving accounts are a great way to save money in Canada as they allow you to set aside money tax-free! The initial amount contributed as well as the income earned in the account (for example, investment income and capital gains) is tax-free, even when it is withdrawn. With a tax saving account you can put aside money for future plans whether a vacation, a new television set or a new home.
2. Buy a Smaller Car
If you’re making a big car payment, then you can reduce it by trading in your car for a smaller one. Buying a smaller car will also save you money on gas. The less fuel you consume, the better for the environment too.
3. Clip Coupons
Clipping coupons is the classic way to save money at the grocery store. And let’s face it, food prices are at an all time high. While many people don’t use coupons because they think it’s a hassle, the amount of money you can save is well worth the bother.
4. Mow Your Own Lawn
If you’re currently paying to have your lawn mowed, then why not mow it yourself? Mowing your own lawn can be enjoyable while saving you a lot of loot. Just make sure you take frequent breaks.
5. Buy in Bulk
In addition to clipping coupons, you can get big discounts on food and other household items by buying in bulk. There are several bulk discount chains operating around the country, and many people swear by them. Just make sure that when you do buy in bulk you freeze and store things properly so food doesn’t go to waste.
6. Eat at Home
If you’re having trouble meeting your budget, then you might be dining out too often. Eating at home is both a great way to save money on meals and a great way to spend quality time with the family.
If you’re an empty nester, then you’ve probably considered downsizing. The benefits of downsizing include not only a lower monthly mortgage payment but lower property taxes, too. This is definitely one to consider.
8. Reduce Your Energy Usage
Even if you’re not able to downsize, you can still reduce the amount of energy you use. With your computer you can apply built-in energy saving settings like turning down the screen’s brightness, disabling devices that aren’t needed, turning off your monitor instead of using a screensaver and turning off your computer when your are away from it for a while.
Simple things like turning off a light when you leave a room and buying energy saving light bulbs can help save you hundreds of dollars per year in electricity costs. Reducing your hot water consumption and opting for short showers instead of long baths will also aid greatly.
9. Reduce Your Entertainment Expenses
If you’re spending too much on entertainment, then why not read more? Library cards are usually free, and a good book can be a lot better than a bad movie.
10. Pay Off High-interest Credit Cards
If you have credit cards that charge too much in interest, then you can save yourself a lot of money by paying them down. Remember that you will still have the option of either paying within the grace period or paying in cash.
Controlling your budget can be difficult. Everywhere you look, there are gadgets for sale that no one wants to do without. Walking past those display cases is the best thing you can do to fix your finances.