Sure, being responsible and getting a needed ride is great, not to mention trying to save a few dollars trying to figure out is lyft cheaper than uber, but in order to really start saving money and cutting back on the money going out compared to coming in, you need to take a full look at your personal finance. Just think about the big picture, and that even though retirement may be decades away, it’s never too early to start planning so you can make sure you have adequate funds to live off when you do finally walk away from work. Every dollar you free up by cutting expenses can pay down debt, build your emergency fund so you don’t have to use a credit card, and continue to increase retirement contributions.
Your Credit Score Makes a Difference
You may not think that your credit score directly impacts your credit score, but actually the lower your credit score is, the higher the interest rates will be on your mortgage, personal loans, credit cards, and even insurance. If you are able to get to the top of the credit tier, you can take advantage of the best rates on the market, and if you think about how large your mortgage balance is, a percent could save hundreds of dollars a month. The three major credit bureaus offer a free copy of your credit report once a year that you can review to ensure all accounts are up to date and accurate.
Use the Right Credit Card
There are so many credit cards out there these days that you probably get multiple offers in your email daily, so with all of the creditors trying to get your business, why not seek out the best one out there. A few things to look for, if you can avoid an annual fee, but if that comes with excellent rewards it may be worth it, where you can earn points or cashback on making the purchases that you were going to make anyways. The APR is important for the interest you pay when you carryover a balance, although you should do your best to avoid that, as that is a recipe for disaster down the road.
Try Going Grocery Shopping
Sure, it’s nice to go out to eat whenever you feel like, whether that is grabbing coffee on the way to work, grabbing lunch while you’re at work, picking up carryout for dinner, or the most expensive, taking the family out to eat. You get to be waited on, and don’t have to clean up after, but you pay for it. If you can go grocery shopping instead, you will watch hundreds of dollars add up in savings each month if you can prepare meals at home, and you’ll probably notice being a little lighter in your shoes as well, as healthier options can be available at home.
Find the Best Price
It used to be that you would have to drive around from store to store all day trying to look for the best price, but fortunately today you can go online shopping in the comfort of your own home, and hop from website to website in a matter of seconds, making sure you’re getting the best price before making the purchase, all while never having to deal with traffic or crowds. Sure, you may find yourself ordering more shopping online, especially with free shipping most of the time, so you may have to give yourself a spending budget.
Coupons are Not Dead
While the Sunday paper subscribers are declining every year, that doesn’t mean that coupons are a thing of the past as well. There are so many options between Groupon, the grocery store’s website, not to mention there seems to be an increase in coupons in the mail from everything to groceries to restaurants that you can make sure you take advantage of so you don’t have to pay full price if you don’t have to. With your grocery store you can even load digital coupons to your store rewards card so you can save at the register, the trick is you just have to remember what you have coupons for.
Keep Up on Auto and Home Maintenance
Instead of waiting for issues to come up, for those you can control that is, why not take care of your car and home with preventable maintenance, with your car regular oil changes and tire rotations, to your home with regular furnace filter replacement, as well as making your home as energy efficient as you can.