If you’re anything like me, savings and budgeting aren’t second nature. It’s easy to spend and not keep track of things, but you know you want to save money. Don’t stress! Here’s a few easy ways to get started – your future self will thank you!
Create a budget!
It’s a short sentence with a lot of punch – it’s hard to save money if you don’t have a budget. Start small – if you don’t track every penny, that’s ok. Start with tracking your monthly income, you expenses, and your savings goals. You can use apps on your phone if you’d like, or you can create an excel spreadsheet that you can input your budget into. (Either way, it does the math for you. Score.)
Get out of debt.
If you have outstanding debt, it doesn’t mean you can’t save money! Make paying off the debt a priority and figure out the largest payment you can each month. But I always set aside a small sum for savings as well – every penny adds up. There are no rules. It can be $15 to $500 a month – you set the pace.
Automate your savings.
Having a portion of my paycheck automatically go to savings took a lot of pressure (and temptation!) off of me. Instead of trying to figure out what percentage of your checking account you can use, set up a separate savings account. Not only will it gain more interest over time, but having money automatically go into it keeps you from second-guessing.
Cut down on your splurging…
These are the ways money slips through your fingers – whether it’s eating out for lunch, your daily coffee run, or cigarettes. We all have something we actually spend a decent amount on that keeps us from saving money that we could have in reserve. It helps to look at what your lunches for example add up in a year. If you’re spending $20 a week eating out, that’s about a $1,000 a year that you never even realize you’re spending.
There are lots of tips out there to save money, from buying used to taking staycations to cancelling unused subscriptions. Those are all good things you and your family can talk about if you have a goal – but also, be relaxed. Nobody can buy everything at the thrift store. There is no perfect savings technique. There’s just you, and your family, and the future you’re building. You’ve got this!
And if you’ve been saving for a house and are ready to start looking, give us a call. We’re a Christian mortgage lender, and every member of our team works to make your dream a reality – because we value the same thing you do. Faith and family, always.
The Christian Mortgage Mom