While it’s certainly not something that should always be at the forefront of our minds, it’s sometimes hard not to view money as the be-all and end-all of everyday life, affecting the choices we make and the things we do.
Do you struggle with spending on stupid purchases, and wish you could develop some better habits in order to make you feel more confident in your finances? Want to start accruing some savings – perhaps to kickstart an investment portfolio – and ultimately end up with more than just scraps as you crawl towards payday? To help with inspiration, we’ve compiled a short list of three money saving habits that could help you in getting out of a financial rut. Read on to find out more, and be sure to share your own financial experiences/tips if not highlighted here!
Getting to know your spending
If you’re the sort of person that simply doesn’t know where your money goes each month (and don’t worry if you are, as there are plenty of us!), one of the first steps that you should start by taking is carefully analysing your spending through your online banking profiles. Trimming down any outgoings that you’d forgotten about will quickly save you some extra cash, and you’ll likely find alarming purchasing habits that you can nip in the bud to help instantly trim the proverbial fat.
Tip – Don’t know where to get started with your spending patterns, or how to change your outgoings into stuff that’s positive? Why not try downloading a financial advisor app on your smartphone? This way, you can get positive messages of encouragement throughout the day as you save, or perhaps even bits of advice and recommendations on how to better curb spending that you want to ideally avoid.The Big Investment blog has a piece on general finance apps that might be helpful if this sounds interesting!
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Investing the money that you have
If you have aspirations greater than just an instant savings pot, and perhaps want to work on some investments for the future, then there is no better time than the present to learn – even if you feel that you don’t have the right amount of funding at that current moment. With the development of technology, there is a wide range of different smartphone apps, guides, podcasts and videos online for you to enjoy absolutely free, perfect for dipping your toe in the water and getting started.
If interested in the world of property investment, for example, RWinvest has a series of podcasts on some of the best areas to consider, what you need to look out for when investing, and how much money you would need to get started depending on the type of property you’re looking at. This sort of informative content will ultimately help you to hit the ground running if you should choose to pursue an investment strategy in the future, and at the very least it’s informative content that you can consume passively while becoming more knowledgeable on different subjects!
Challenging yourself to do better
Often gamifying an aspect of your life and challenging yourself to do something can help with motivation and drive, and so you might want to try this with different aspects of spending. Have a savings figure in mind that you want to reach by a specifictime, or perhaps even try having a go at one of the many savings challenges out there on the internet, as recommended by financial bloggers and writers.
One popular example is the ‘1p savings challenge’, in which you save a gradually increasing amount of money each day – starting with 1p and ending the year at £3.65. While it might seem trivial (and even unfeasible if you don’t have the correct amount of change each day!), it’s activities like this that get the ball rolling with saving and that general frugal mentality that you might be lacking, and once you’ve got the ball rolling it’s easier to maintain than you might think.
What are your favourite ways to save money, and what challenges/goals do you set yourself? Join in the discussion!