Everyone wants to save money, right?
For most, saving money is easier said than done though. Considering that the average person is saving less than they want to, many probably need to be more creative with how they go about saving money.
By tricking yourself into saving money, you may be able to get yourself out of the financial rut you are in and start improving your financial situation.
No matter how great you are at saving money, by taking part in some of the tactics below you may be able to save even more. I’m not the greatest when it comes to saving, so I often have to be a little creative so that I don’t fall off track too often.
Whether you are just trying to save more money in general or if you have your heart set on a certain purchase, below are my tips for saving money.
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1. Pay yourself first.
The very first thing you should think about doing if you want to learn how to save money by tricking yourself is to pay yourself first.
Each time you receive a paycheck, you should put a certain amount directly in savings first. Treating savings as though it’s another bill instead of just saving whatever you have left at the end of the month can help you save more money. This is because you will have less money to work with each month and you will think about each purchase you make a little more carefully.
2. Wait to make a purchase.
Before you buy something, you may want to think about it for a day or two, or even longer. This can help prevent any second guesses that you may have if you instead jumped on a purchase too quickly. If you don’t think you can bring yourself to not buy something, you may also think about leaving your wallet at home when you go shopping so that you are forced to think about any purchases you want to make.
You could use this trick when thinking about buying a particular article of clothing, a new car, and so on. By waiting to make a purchase you will most likely eliminate a lot of unneeded spending.
I do this nearly every time I want to buy something that I didn’t originally plan for. Whenever I take part in this trick, I usually never go back for the item! This is partly due to laziness, but that’s still good for me.
3. Save your change.
Even though I don’t use cash a lot, I still like to keep my change when I can. Whenever you receive change after making a purchase, put it into a coin jar and cash it out once it’s full.
If you don’t usually pay with cash, you can always see if your bank will round up your purchases. Many banks do this nowadays and you may be able to save up a nice chunk of change without even realizing it.
Related tip: I recommend looking into Digit if you want to trick yourself into saving more money. Digit is a service that looks at your spending and transfers money to a savings account for you. Digit makes everything easy so that you can start saving money with very little effort.
4. Put a certain amount away each day or week.
If you find it hard to save money, then you may want to divide it into smaller amounts so that it can seem much more doable.
Different methods include:
- Save $1 (or $10 or whatever you want) each and every day. The small amount most likely won’t seem like much but by the end of the year you will have a little bit extra saved with little effort.
- Start by saving $52 a week and keep going until the very last week when you only have to save $1. By doing this, you will save around $1,400 in one year and it only gets easier as each week passes!
5. Stick to cash.
Cash allows many to save more money. This is because it’s tangible and you actually have to give up your money when you spend it, unlike with a credit or debit card.
If you are having a hard time and want to learn how to save money, then you may want to stick to an all-cash budget and see if that works better for you. This means taking out a certain amount of cash for food, gas, and so on each month.
This can also be applied to the “envelope” method where you can only spend the exact amount or less in cash that you take out of your bank account each month. This way you can actually watch how much money you have left over dwindle away so that you analyze each purchase.
6. Set an allowance.
Each month, Wes and I each receive an “allowance.” We set aside a certain amount of money each month that we can spend on ourselves. This way we don’t feel bad about spending money on ourselves and also so that we can stay within a realistic budget that stays the same month after month.
This tactic helps keep us in line and it also helps us scrutinize what we spend money on since we have a limited amount to spend each month. I also feel that it helps us appreciate what we buy since we have to think harder about what is worth it and what is not to us.
7. Pocket your raises.
Next time you are given a raise at work, you may want to skip the lifestyle inflation that may go along with it and save your raise instead each time you get paid. You most likely won’t miss the money anyways, so why not just save it?
8. Make extra money.
This one goes along with #7 above. Each time you make extra money, you may want to try saving the full amount you make each time. It may not be money that you miss anyways, so instead of spending it on something you do not need, instead build up your savings account (or pay off your debt).
By quickly transferring any extra money that you make, you prevent yourself from spending it.
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9. Stay motivated.
Saving money isn’t easy for everyone. Eventually, many will get tired, go back to their old ways, and so on. In order to stay motivated, you may need to reward yourself.
You may decide to reward yourself in a monetary or non-monetary way.
An example of of monetarily rewarding yourself may include treating yourself to your favorite tea from a local coffee shop after you save a certain amount of money. It’s a small purchase so it most likely will not derail you, but it can be a nice way to stay motivated. A non-monetary example may include doing whatever it is that you want to do that you may not have been able to squeeze time in for lately.
Do you know how to save money? Do you have to trick yourself into saving money? Why or why not?
If you are new to my blog, I am all about finding ways to make and save more money. Here are some of my favorite sites and products that may help you out:
- Cut your TV bill. Cut your cable, satellite, etc. Even go as far to go without Netflix or Hulu as well. Buy a digital antenna (this is the one we have) and enjoy free TV for life.
- Start a blog. Blogging is how I make a living and just a few years ago I never thought it would be possible. I earn over $30,000 a month online through my blog and you can read more about this in my monthly online income reports. You can create your own blog here with my easy-to-use tutorial. You can start your blog for as low as $2.95 per month plus you get a free domain if you sign-up through my tutorial.
- Lower your cell phone bill. Instead of paying the $150 or more that you spend on your cell phone bill, there are companies out there like Republic Wireless that offer cell phone service starting at $10. YES, I SAID $10! If you use my Republic Wireless affiliate link, you can change your life and start saving thousands of dollars a year on your cell phone service. I created a full review on Republic Wireless as well if you are interested in hearing more. I’ve been using them for over a year and they are great.
- Sign up for a website like Ebates where you can earn CASH BACK for just spending like how you normally would online. The service is free too! Plus, when you sign up through my link, you also receive a free $10 gift card bonus to Macys, Walmart, Target, or Kohls!
- Save money on food. I recently joined $5 Meal Plan in order to help me eat at home more and cut my food spending. It’s only $5 a month (the first two weeks are free too) and you get meal plans sent straight to you along with the exact shopping list you need in order to create the meals. Each meal costs around $2 per person or less. This allows you to save time because you won’t have to meal plan anymore, and it will save you money as well!
- Look for coupon codes. I search for coupon codes for everything. Today, I have two for you. I have a $20 Airbnb coupon code and a free taxi ride with Uber. Both are great services that I have personally used.
- I highly recommend Credible for student loan refinancing. You can lower the interest rate on your student loans significantly by using Credible which may help you shave thousands off your student loan bill over time.
- Answer surveys. Survey companies I recommend include Survey Junkie, American Consumer Opinion, VIP Voice, Product Report Card, Survey Club, Pinecone Research, Opinion Outpost, and Harris Poll Online. They’re free to join and free to use! You get paid to answer surveys and to test products. It’s best to sign up for as many as you can as that way you can receive the most surveys and make the most money.
- Use Swagbucks for your online searches. Swagbucks allows me to occasionally earn Amazon gift cards with very little work. Swagbucks is just like using Google to do your online searches, except you get rewarded “points called SB” for the things you do through their website. Then, when you have enough Swagbucks, you can redeem them for cash, gift cards, and more. You’ll receive a free $5 bonus just for signing up today!
- Try InboxDollars. InboxDollars is an online rewards website I recommend. You can earn cash by taking surveys, playing games, shopping online, searching the web, redeeming grocery coupons, and more. Also, by signing up through my link, you will receive $5.00 for free just for signing up!
- Find a part-time job. There are many part-time jobs that you may be able to find. You can find a job on sites such as Snagajob, Craigslist (yes, I’ve found a legitimate job through there before), Monster, and so on.