We’re always looking for ways to help save you money and sometimes that means helping you start fresh or even find everyday ways to spend less. And we know that getting your finances in order can be tricky. It’s never as simple as we want it to be. But there are common mistakes we can avoid when it comes to our money and ways to help simplify your finances. And that is what GoDay is here for you. Whether you are looking to get back on track with your finances or needing help with an unexpected financial situation, GoDay can get you the cash you need, quickly and easily and provide financial education information to help you along the way. That’s why we are sharing our favourite tips to help you save more and spend less.
Budget, budget, budget
There is a common theme in many of our blog posts – budgeting. That is because (as we have mentioned before) that here at GoDay, we are constantly referring to how important it is to have some kind of budgeting system in place; especially when it comes to looking for everyday ways to spend less. And when your expenses start exceeding more of your income you know that it is time to re-evaluate your money matters. Many people have different goals when it comes to their budgets and different ways they like to stay on top of their finances. Are you looking to stay on track? Have you been going over your budget lately? Are you looking to analyze your budget to see where you could be saving more money and spending less? No matter what your reason is, ensuring that you have a budget in place is the first step. So what does budgeting mean for someone who is trying to spend less? You want to be able to see where your money is. It can be a lot of work when you constantly have to focus on what money is coming in and how much is coming out all the time. Because we understand that it can be tricky trying to keep track of where your money needs to go next.
But if you are not a budgeter, that’s okay. Like other money matters, one of the most common questions when it comes to starting a budget is “where do I start”? And unfortunately, there is no right answer. It is about what works for you. But once you have money starting to come in and expenses that need to be paid, it’s time to start watching where your money is going by having some sort of tracking system or budget in place. And if you are looking at trying to spend less and save more, this means you may need to take a step back and focus on your spending habits to see if there are any specific things you can cut down on or take out of your budget. Being aware of your finances and having a system in place to help you understand your current finances is how you can help set yourself up for success and create a budget that works for you. People often put a lot of effort into budgeting, but it is sticking to it that will help you reach your financial goals.
Here is a list of common budget tools people use:
- Excel Spreadsheet
- Mobile apps (Mint, Wally, Pocket Guard and more)
- Spending journal
- Receipt tracker
- Computer programs/software
- Banks in house tools
Say Goodbye to Bad Spending Habits
If you want to say goodbye to bad spending habits you need to first learn how to make better spending decisions. We have all heard of the saying, “money can’t buy happiness”. But it doesn’t always feel that way, especially because it is no secret that we enjoy spending money. And we all have them. Call them what you like – guilty pleasures, impulse purchases, spending sprees, we have all been there. It is these kinds of spending habits that we wish we could break. But it is okay to have bad spending habits. As we mentioned, you are not the only one. But it is being able to recognize how you are spending and being able to take the next steps and change your thinking on how to make better spending decisions that will have the biggest impact on your bank account. Most of the time it can be hard to know what you have spent your money on, but once you get a handle on being able to track your spending and seeing where your money is going, identifying those bad spending habits becomes more obvious so that you can see what changes then need to be made.
What are bad spending habits you should focus on breaking?
- Avoid impulse purchases: Are you one of those people that do not read the price tag or sees something they like and decide to buy it? Don’t fall for ads or retail marketing and stick to your planned spending to avoid impulse purchases.
- Treating yourself: these guilty pleasure purchases have become a catchphrase that when you hear of someone “treating themselves”, that usually means money was spent that was not originally budgeted but results in making you happy. We’re not saying that you don’t deserve special treatment, but this also has to be done within reason.
- Paying for convenience: paying for something that we know is a premium because it will result in making life easier. Sign us up! And that’s okay, but you have to have your budget in mind. There are many things that people pay a premium for convenience, but this is one spending habit that can make a big impact on your budget.
Start Saving Automatically
Bad spending habits can often lead to bad savings habits- because you are spending what you can be saving! It is easy when money isn’t automatically going into your savings for you to make excuses or use those dollars towards something else. But we understand that saving is one of those things that need to become a habit and is much easier said than done. The first step when it comes to saving is to create or open a savings account. This account should be separate from your everyday spending or chequing account. Why? Because when you are putting all your money into one account, it can be easy to spend your money on whatever, whenever. And if the money you are saving is sitting in the same account you are spending from, it can be difficult to know what and how much you are saving. If you are also one of those people that feel like you have spent your paycheck by the time it gets to your bank account, then one of the best ways to force yourself to save is the direct deposit approach. Just like how your paycheck gets deposited on payday, you can contribute to your savings account with automatic payments. Direct deposits and automatic payments shouldn’t have to just be for bills, why can’t it also be for adding to your savings account? These automatic transfers help with not having to constantly check in on your accounts and try and remember to contribute to your savings and put money away. Every little bit makes a difference, and before you know it, you will be saving without having to “try” and save.
More Tips To Spend Less
Stick With Cash
Another tip to spending less is to only use cash and avoid using your credit card. Especially if you’re trying to tackle debt, putting purchases on your credit card compared to using cash or debit is what can cause you to fall off-budget if you are not keeping track of your purchases. A lot of people are surprised at the end of the month when they see their credit card statement and realize how much money has actually been spent. This is why some people prefer to use cash because it helps keep track of your spending. According to a Bankrate survey, just one out of three millennials carries plastic compared to the majority of older Americans. In addition, the Financial Post also reported that those between the ages of 18 to 24 preferred to pay cash compared to others. And if they do choose to carry a card, it tends to be a prepaid or debit card. By using cash only, you are seeing first hand where your cash is going and by only having so much of it available, it will also help curb your spending habits on what may be unnecessary items that you never realized how much you were spending money on (which we know can easily be done with your cards).
Know the Difference Between Wants Versus Needs When Spending
There is no question that it is much easier to spend money on things that we want and even things that we think we may need. Who else wants to go on a beach vacation? What about a new car? Who doesn’t want the latest and greatest technology that has just been released? The lists definitely go on. And those things don’t have to just be a “want” if you save and budget accordingly for them. But if it came down to these things or making sure your monthly bills got paid on time, your financial obligation is your bills. Living in a society where the latest gadget is a “must have” and brands create good marketing to make us feel we “need” these things is one of the ways people are constantly overspending and finding themselves in debt. We’ve become accustomed to things that we think we “need” and are constantly spending money on them. But would you be fine without them? When creating a budget or looking for ways to spend less money, it is about taking a look at your financial priorities and making sure you know the difference between what your wants versus needs are.
Know Your Financial Means
Would you be surprised if we told you that more and more people are overspending and falling behind financially? This is very common when it comes to things we want as we mentioned above. Items such as the ones we are buying because we think it will make us happy or think we need it. Living within your means is not always easy, but it is the best way to avoid excessive debt. A perfect example is asking yourself how much money you put onto your credit card each month. Not everyone keeps track of what they’re charging to their cards, but by throwing purchases onto your credit card without keeping your budget in mind is what can get you into debt in the first place. The budget tips we talked about are a great way to start to keep track of your spending habits and be able to put your finances into perspective. Canadians are burdened with historically high levels of household debt, according to Statistics Canada. Simply put, too many people are spending more than they earn. And we understand that it can be hard to keep up sometimes, especially when something financially unexpected happens. So next time you are looking to get yourself out of a financial bind or help stay afloat until your next paycheck, GoDay is here to help. We also have resources to help you along the way so that we can help you get back on track and to what really matters.
Wanting to spend less and save more should be one of everyone’s financial goals. And losing track of your spending and falling off-budget can happen, which is why GoDay is here to help you get back on track. But when it comes down to it, what are you willing to cut out of your budget to ensure that you are spending less and saving more? Whether you are looking to revamp your budget, re-evaluate your financial plan, focus on your spending habits or more GoDay is always looking for ways to help you meet your financial goals. Learn more by visiting our website or how to get a payday loan today.