If you could change one thing about your life, what would it be? For most people, the answer is likely to be that they would like to earn more money. A survey of American workers shows that just 19 percent of the nation’s workforce believes they are paid enough. This low percentage demonstrates how significant the gap is between how much employees feel they should earn compared with how much they are paid each month.
The state of your finances has a significant impact on your life. Therefore, it is understandable that a high percentage of workers feel that they need to be paid higher wages. While there may be more to life than material possessions, having some degree of financial freedom is a goal that many people strive to achieve. As a minimum, most people at least want to know that they have enough money to pay the bills and buy groceries each month.
If you are looking for ways to increase your income, you have a few options available. Firstly, you could try to arrange a meeting with your boss to discuss your wages and to ask them for a salary increase. Secondly, you could try to apply for a new job, which offers better pay and more benefits. Lastly, you could try to make your current income go further so that you have more spare cash each month. In this article, we are going to explore this last option. Read on to find some smart money-saving tips that show how you can make your existing wages go further each month.
Assess Your Situation
Taking a proactive approach to your finances, rather than a reactive approach is always a good idea. The first step towards becoming proactive with your finances is to assess your current financial situation. Assessing your current financial situation will enable you to get a full picture of your money. An excellent place to start is to write down details of the amount of money that you have in savings, how much you earn each month, how much you spend on bills, and other expenses. You can either stick to an old-fashioned method and write all this down with pen and paper; or, if you prefer, you could make a spreadsheet with all these details on, that you can update each month.
The most important two figures to include are the amount of income you have each month versus your total monthly outgoings. Once you have these two figures in place, you will then need to break down your outgoings into individual expenses as best as you can. You can start by listing the amounts that you spend on groceries, electricity, eating out, etc. It is vital to break these figures down as best you can as these will be where you can make your savings each month.
Now that you have all the figures in front of you, you may feel a little shocked by what you see. This is perfectly normal, going through your finances in so much detail can be an eye-opening experience. You may not have ever appreciated how much you spend on certain items, and be surprised at how these costs stack up over the month. Try not to beat yourself up too much about your current spending habits, as you are now taking decisive action to improve your financial situation, and will be saving money before you know it!
To get started on saving money, it is a good idea to divide your outgoings into committed spending and non-committed spending. Your committed spending is all of those regular monthly amounts that leave your bank account each month, such as your rent or mortgage payments, your electricity, and gas bill, etc. Non-committed spending is costs such as your grocery shopping, money that you spend on socializing, etc. It is important to note that both your committed and non-committed expenditure can be reduced.
Many people accept the amount that they pay on their bills each month without question. However, putting in just a little research can help you to make significant savings on many of your monthly expenses. Your electricity and gas bills are a perfect example of this, spending a little time to shop energy plans can help you to weigh up the most cost-effective plan for your home, which could help you to make big savings on your bills.
Making small, daily savings on your spending will help you to cut your outgoings back. Making a packed lunch for work instead of buying one, and making your coffee to go at home instead of buying it are great places to start making daily savings.
One of the simplest ways to save money is to look through your bank account for regular payments coming out that you no longer need. Look out for payments for things like subscriptions and gym memberships that you no longer use. Check that you will not be penalized for canceling the payments, and if not, go ahead and do it to make yourself some savings.
Make Your Savings Count
After all your hard work saving money, you mustn’t let your efforts go to waste. It is a good idea to track how much money you are saving each week and month from the changes that you make. Keeping track of the amount of money that you have saved will help you to see that your efforts to manage your money are paying off. You must separate the money that you have saved so that you can ensure that it doesn’t get swallowed up in your bank account. You may decide to set this money aside to save up for something such as a new car or a holiday. Alternatively, you may choose to keep this money to build up a savings fund to give yourself financial security. Whichever way the money is saved, it will be a great feeling to know that you have more money each month than you realized.