Whether you are a college sophomore or in your 30’s, you already realise two things. One that people who make a good living and have extra money in their bank accounts lead happier lives than people who live in poverty. The second is that since we live in financially unpredictable times, the sooner you start saving, the more shielded you are from that instability.
According to a study published last year, only about 4 in 10 people in the US have enough savings to cover a sudden expense of $500 or $1,000. These people had many financially helpful habits like, keeping track of spending, having emergency funds, utilizing whatever resources they have available in order to make extra money or seeking out debt relief services.
While everyone has different ideas on how to generate extra income that decide their ability to save, bad spending habits are easy to detect. If you constantly find yourself doing any of the following, you are not managing your finances as well as you could.
- You don’t know how much money you carry
If you keep in mind the value of the cards and cash you are carrying in your wallet, you will be more conscious about where and how much you are spending. Experts advice that the best way to control spending impulses is by not carrying a credit card at all. The biggest advantage of not signing up for a credit card is that you will always live within your means and never fall into debt.
- Falling for sales deals
The deception of discount makes us buy more than we actually need. Looking for discount coupons online before you make a necessary purchase is good common sense but buying something just because it is available for sale is a bad idea. You need a plan and a list before you enter the store. This list will make sure that you stick to what is required and stay away from impulse buying.
- Emotional purchases
Buying things because someone else bought them or because you are having a bad day is as bad as impulse buying. This decision will only jack up your credit card bill unnecessarily. If retail therapy indeed makes you happy, then set aside a small amount every month for shopping without guilt. Emotional purchases won’t make troubles disappear. Also, never buy things to please others or gain approval from other people. This approval is not going to pay your bills on a rainy day.
- You have never tracked your savings
Learn how to develop a monthly budget and keep track of how much you spend. Every dollar in your bank account has the ability to add value to your life but it depends on you to harness that potential. When you understand how much you spend on what, you will get the ability to cut down the unnecessary expenses. Additionally, there will be a sense of satisfaction when you realise what you were able to save by adhering to a plan every month.
- Eating out every day
If you are buying your meals everyday, that will not only drain your financial resources but also widen your waistline. Home-cooked food has better nutritional value and is more cost-effective. If you don’t enjoy cooking, then plan your meals a week in advance.