2016 is here and many of us are trying hard to keep our new year’s resolutions. Some folks may have already given in and fallen back on old habits but that’s okay – pick up and start again.
Perhaps saving money and leading a more financially responsible life was the goal. if so then surely by now there have been tempting opportunities to break this resolution for even the most mindful and devoted of promise keepers. If such is the case and irresponsible spending has occurred, rest assured the resolution to save more money can be swiftly placed back on track. Here are some ideas to get started:
Many people neglect to take simple albeit proactive measures to reduce the monthly utility bills. Simply going around and helping to seal cracks in doors and windows as well as cutting down on water usage can equate to a surprising amount of money saved over the course of a year. In addition, millions of people don’t realize they live in deregulated and competitive energy markets across North America. Renters and homeowners can click here to see if they live in such a region and can consequently cut costs on energy per kilowatt hour.
Americans throw away on average between 14-25% of the food and drinks purchased every year. It’s a complete and utter waste of resources and also a huge waste of money. Think of the thousands which could be saved by being smarter about food buying choices. Bottomline: know what gets eaten and what doesn’t. Experiment in small doses when it comes to getting kids to embrace fruits and veggies. Stick with what they like. Furthermore it’s a good idea to attempt as many dishes as possible with a core list of ingredients. This ensures the most gets used and the less thrown out.
Fun and Fitness
Unless you’re an ardent user or are determined to become one it’s probably a good idea to cancel that gym membership if possible. Exercising without equipment at home or outdoors is underrated and completely feasible. Again, there’s no need to throw out a well-used fitness center membership especially if it’s the motivating factor, but who really uses them? Additionally, take efforts to cut down on the monthly costs of having fun. Yes, it sounds like a buzz kill move, but simply budgeting your time off is enough to cut out commonly overlooked expenses associated with recreational activities.
The following technique making the rounds via social media is a neat way to build up a little over $1300 in the course of a single year. Match each week of the year with an equal sum of dollars: week one = one dollar, week two = two dollars, and so forth. It amounts to an average of $108 or so saved each month without the strain of coming up with it all at once. This savings vein comes in handy during the holidays when credit cards and other pricey alternatives are otherwise used, or can be rolled over into next year.
New year’s resolutions are hard to keep by their very nature, but if saving money is the promise being kept for 2016 there are ways to make it easier. Monitoring costs across the board, evaluating seemingly must-have products and services, approaching spending in a practical form with a long-term outlook, and saving creatively will increase the odds of this resolution staying true to form for the next 12 months and beyond.