5 Surprising Ways To Cut Household Costs & Save More Money
Looking to save more money on a tight budget? Try these 5 surprising ways to cut household costs so that you can save more and still live comfortably.
Saving on a tight budget requires creativity and sacrifice. But, it’s probably easier than you imagined.
So whether you want to save more money for an emergency fund, vacation, a big purchase, or retirement, these are easy ways to cut household costs to save more!
5 Surprising Ways To Cut Household Costs On A Tight Budget
Finding money in an already tight budget can be daunting, to say the least, but depending on your priorities, it is definitely doable with these 5 ways to cut household costs.
Our budget now is even tighter than before as our family has grown and of course, the cost of living is ever increasing. We have however applied the following techniques which have helped us to increase savings.
Ok, so let’s talk about these 5 surprising ways to cut household costs so you can jumpstart your savings.
1. Pay Yourself First
Paying yourself first is the best way to save for your goal. The idea here is to pay yourself before any of your other expenses. That way, you’re guaranteed to save and you will have an idea of how much money you have left to spend on household costs.
Start off with a savings goal in mind – a clear idea of how much money you want to save within your timeframe. This will allow you to work out how much you need to save each month and how much money would be available for your living expenses.
An easy way to do this is to develop a savings mindset. Your mind is awesomely powerful. Even though this is not a way to cut your household costs on its own, it’s an incredibly important first step.
Having the right frame of mind can do wonders for just about anything that you’re trying to accomplish. It allows you to be more open to saving, making it easier to make the necessary changes and sacrifices. It allows cutting certain expenses to be easier. It helps to set goals more clearly and realistically.
2. Be very clear about your needs vs wants
It’s so natural to want to buy things to make yourself and your kids comfortable and happy. However, when you’re actively trying to save, it’s a good idea to weed out the needs from the wants and stick to only those purchases that you need.
3. Track & review Your Existing Budget
It’s very important to track all of your expenses and spending habits over some time to get a clear idea of where you’re at. This will allow you to easily see what you are spending most of your money on and where you are possibly overspending. This will help you gain clarity about where you could cut costs.
After paying yourself first, work on cutting from each category so that you cover your living expenses with the money you have left.
Cut every category a bit
I recommend starting to cut from the big expenditure categories. These usually include housing and food (especially eating out). You may not be able to cut your housing costs, like rent or mortgage but you probably can cut your food category. After cutting spending on food, cut a little from all your other expenses.
Even with loans – can you refinance, consolidate, or even pay it off?
Another way to cut current expenses is to reduce usage. For instance, we stopped using our air condition as much and that alone cut our electricity bill in half. Finding out which appliances pull the most current and adjusting your usage is a fantastic way to reduce your bill and reveal some savings.
Other ideas are to give up cable TV and only keep the Internet and to exercise at home to save on gym fees.
Refrain from hanging out at expensive places
Instead of going to expensive places, opt for cheaper or even free activities. For example, have a picnic or take a romantic stroll with your significant other for date night.
Stay away from online Or Instore shopping
Shopping online is soooooo easy and convenient. It is very addictive and marketing is so good that you may feel that you need to take advantage of every sale.
Similarly, even in stores, sale racks and deal items can draw us in but resist the temptation. Keep your goal in mind and walk by.
For some, like me, online shopping can actually be better to help you stay on track. I find that when I’m able to see how much my total is before I checkout, it’s easier for me to keep my spending in check. In-store shopping is harder for me when I’m trying to save more money.
Stop buying food Out
This is where we spent most of our money and so it made perfect sense to start our cutting with food. We didn’t completely give up on restaurant food though. Instead, we planned a treat for the family once a month. This also helped us to appreciate and enjoy the food more.
Instead, we cooked more at home and it saved us a lot of money.
Remove unnecessary expenses
Some expenses such as monthly subscriptions that you don’t use often should be canceled. For instance, we had a membership to a club that we didn’t go to often enough for it to be worth it so we cut that out of our budget and saved more money.
Stick to your budget
Lastly, try your best to stick to the budget you have set for yourself. I cannot stress how essential this step is. Creating a budget is the easy part. Sticking to it is where the hard work is but once you stick to it and get accustomed to your new way of spending, it will become easier.
These practices have become our way of life and really don’t compromise our lifestyle or happiness. Sometimes, we do have off months (for instance, after our daughter was born) but try not to stress, just adjust and move forward with the next month.
4. Avoid Unnecessary debt
This includes any unnecessary debt, like credit cards or even a car loan. If it’s possible to purchase a used car or keep your existing car, skip getting a brand new car.
Another big source of debt is credit cards. Managing credit cards can be tough, especially if you find yourself in a particularly difficult situation. However, if you’re running up your credit card on wants and not needs, this is definitely an area that you can control and manage better. The best thing you can do is make your credit card work for you!
For instance, if I don’t have the cash to purchase a want, I just won’t buy it. My rule is that I can only purchase something if I have the money to put on my card. I also ensure that my card is paid in full by the due date to avoid additional charges, like interest or late fees. Finally, I utilize the rewards to maximize the benefits of having this type of debt.
For some, this may not be possible as you may be in a position where, for example, food simply costs more than you have at the moment. The best thing to do in this situation is to pay the minimum balance or as much as you can, before the due date.
5. Finding Other Ways To Make Money
There are so many ways to make money outside of your 9-5. There are part time jobs and jobs that can be conveniently done from home. For instance, there are survey sites, online consulting businesses, blogging, vlogging etc. Check out these ways you can make money from home.
Sticking To Your Budget To Cut Household Costs & Save More Money
To be able to save or “find money” in your current budget requires sacrifice. It may or may not be very long term but this is where prioritizing is crucial. Being committed to your goal and the hard work it would take makes it easier to stay the course. If you stick to these 5 simple ways to cut household costs
The savings we were able to find were unbelievable and it eventually led to us being able to buy our first home, a small but comfortable condo.
I hope this will help you on your journey to saving more money each month. I’d love to hear from you so please leave your best tips and tricks to cut household costs and save more money in the comments below.