Updated: How to Save Money

Everyone has goals. I have a goal house that I would ideally love to have one day with my family and many dogs. I have a goal of the laptop I would love to have to use after college. Every goal, in one way or another, costs money. In one of my previous posts, Five Ways to Motivate Yourself, I wrote about being able to go after your goals. One of the big things I didn’t mention involved in goal-getting was saving money.

In my last How to Save Money post, I glazed over five major tips and tricks for saving money. After doing some research and trying some new tips, I’m back and ready to tell you about these new gimmicks.

Spend Less Where You Can

While this might seem like one of those “Well, duh!” tips, it’s one that is typically looked over. At restaurants, you can order a smaller dish (especially if the place is a bit more expensive) like an appetizer. For example, BJ’s has a lot of filling appetizers that are delicious and most importantly, cheaper than the other dishes.

Another food-related trick would be to bring your own lunch to work or school. I like to bring homemade sandwiches on campus to avoid paying for overpriced food (a Subway sandwich can be upwards of $10). It’s a simple way to save some money while still eating food when you need to.

Plan Your Grocery Shopping

Studies have actually shown that people who don’t plan which items that they wish to purchase from Target or Vons tend to buy more than they need. What I like to do is throughout the week write down what items I would need, such as bread, butter, or milk. I use the app Wunderlist for keeping track of all the things I need (I highly recommend!). Once I know exactly what I need, I go to whichever store I need to go to.

Another trick that I use is to know where I can get the cheapest items for the best quality. I go to Trader Joe’s for milk, butter, and eggs because it’s the least expensive that I’ve found. I like Target or Vons for getting my bread and freezer-food type stuff, like frozen stir-fry.

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Find Discounts that Apply to You

Students

There is no limit to the amount of businesses that offer student discounts. Amazon, Spotify, Apple Music, Hulu, Showtime, etc. You can still stream all the media you want for a portion of the price. For example, I pay $4.99 a month for Spotify which is bundled with Showtime and Hulu. The full-pop version is worth $12.99 according to Spotify.com. It’s a great deal.

For Amazon, you can get 50% off a Prime membership with a college email address (ex: yourname@yourcollege.edu). This is a good amount of savings and can help a lot with any items you could possibly need for college (check out my post on how to get cheaper textbooks!).

Bonus: Your institution might offer Microsoft Office (Word, Excel, PowerPoint, etc) if you’re a full-time student. If you go to CPP, they definitely offer it.

Seniors

All types of restaurants offer senior discounts, from smaller portions for smaller prices or two-for-one deals. I don’t know much about senior discounts unfortunately but I am sure that businesses you frequent offer discounts for almost everything. Everything you could need to know is a Google search away (view below)!

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Save for Your Debt

While the title might sound a bit redundant, you can save for future debt! With student loans for college students or credit card debt or debt from a loan, money that you owe will accumulate if it hasn’t already.

If you have debt, sometimes a good goal is to pay off a certain percentage of it. I like the 10% rule because it is such a number that it seems attainable. If you owe $10,000, try saving for $1,000. If the 10% rule is a bit daunting, 5% can be just as attainable. Putting money away towards your debt can reduce the amount of interest you pay each year, saving you a couple hundred dollars depending on your amount due.

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Track Your Spending

The way that I track my spending would be in my bullet journal! I have a spread dedicated to tracking how much money I spend, when I spend, and what I spend it on. Writing it down really emphasizes how much or how little I spend during the month. If you find a way to track your money that forces you to see a physical manifestation, it’s easier to cringe at the total amount.

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Research Big Purchases

For bigger purchases that you’re saving up for (like a laptop for school!), research all of the different options. If it’s an appliance or something like that, look into the different stores or websites that offer that item and see how their prices compare. You can sign up for membership programs and try to save money there as well (example: Best Buy, Amazon, etc). Make sure you’re finding the best deal possible!

Those are all of my updated tips! I really hope that this will help in saving money. Leave a comment down below if you want to or have used any of these tricks. Thank you so much for reading!

Love,

Kaitlin

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