20 Simple Ways to Cut Costs and Save Money Every Day

Written by on July 10, 2016 in Economy with 0 Comments

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By Charis Rebecca Brown | clark.com

From cable bills to everyday spending habits, these 19 tips will help you save more, spend less, and help you have a sunnier 2016 when it comes to finances.

20 ways to save more in 2016

1. Set goals.

You might think that first on our list should be the infamous New Year's resolutions we've become so accustomed to year after year. But since New Year's resolutions tend to flop by January 30 each year, goal setting is a much better option!

Setting goals is a habit for people who win with money, and it should become a habit for you too. Studies have shown that just by having a goal for something it brings you closer to that goal versus not having any goal at all.

An important part of this equation is making sure your goals are S.M.A.R.T.: Specific, measurable, attainable, realistic, and time oriented. Once you have a goal or goals in mind that include all of these attributes, chop your goal into smaller pieces, or milestones, that you can hit more easily. Once you hit each milestone, celebrate! This will help to encourage you as you move forward toward your financial goals.

Also, write down your financial goals, and put them in an obvious place so you see them often – such as on the refrigerator or next to a door you walk through frequently.

2. Budget.

It's hard to tell where you're headed if you haven't mapped out where you are! The word “budget” may illicit strong feelings of “lack,” “constraint,” or be the antithesis of “fun,” but budgeting isn't as scary or as difficult as it sounds. Budgeting, simply put, is telling your money where you want it to go.

If you need some help getting started, check out this budgeting guide, and also 6 reasons why budgeting is aasier than you think.

Related Article: 3 Ways to Survive in a Declining Economy and Uncertain Times

2. Negotiate prices.

Did you know that you can negotiate in almost any kind of purchasing situation?

Though you might have previously thought negotiation was only for the bigger purchases such as home buying or car shopping, you can also negotiate at retail stores and online too. You can even negotiate to lower your bills!

3. Slash excess spending.

Every so often, it's a good idea to track your purchasing history to see where your money is going. An easy way to do this is by using budget apps like Mint.com or BillGuard.com. Then, once  you see where your money is going, you can make adjustments where necessary. Do you really need to buy that new iPhone or Android device ever time a new one comes out?

Related Article: 13 of the Best Finance Books for Creating Smart Money Habits & More Wealth

You might even want to try a 30 day household financial cleanse to jump start your savings.

4. Cut monthly bills.

Monthly expenses can bite us if we aren't careful. Cable is no exception! With the average cable bill being about $99.10, according to Liechtman Research Group, cable and other monthly expenses can really add up over time.

To cut your monthly bills, check out this guide.

5. Switch up your grocery routine.

There is no doubt that spending in the grocery category of your budget can vary a TON from household to household. I've read about people who spend anywhere from $70 to $1,500 – for just two adults.

But the good news is, even if you have trouble spending in the grocery category, this is one place where you can save a ton! It just requires a little extra time, a few sacrifices, and some practice.

If you're new to saving-friendly grocery shopping, be sure to consider Aldi as a lower cost option. Also, you'll want to avoid these 18 foods that can put a massive dent in your grocery bill, and be sure to check out these 7 ways you can save the most money on your groceries.

6. Transfer debt to a lower interest credit card.

If you have credit card debt, doing a $0 balance transfer might be a big way to save. However — you'll want to be careful: If you don't allow yourself enough time to pay off the card before the interest offer expires, you could be hit with even bigger interest fees than what you are paying now.

Check out these 3 $0 credit card transfer offers, and also take these steps to save the most while paying off your debt.

Related Article: Credit Card Rates Expected to Rise Greatly – Here Are 6 Steps to Get Out of Credit Debt ASAP

7. Be picky about your savings account.

Picking the right savings account is essential in order to make sure you can save the most and earn the most while your money is being tucked aside for a rainy day.

Online savings accounts such as Ally.com and Capital One 360 are fee-free and have online savings account options that allow you to earn 1% or .75% on your money, respectively. But, there are many types of savings accounts you can choose from. Be sure to pick one that aligns the best with your needs.

8. Use lower cost financial trading apps.

Instead of paying big fees on trading, did you know you can spend little to nothing on trading?

Apps like Acorns, Robin Hood and Stash make it even easier to trade!

9. Invest under the right tax shelter.

How you save for retirement makes a BIG difference in how much you'll earn over the course of your working years. Be sure to follow Clark's Investment Guide to save the most for retirement!

In addition, save even more as you invest by using a fee-only financial planner.

10. Switch your car.

The average American spends $479 a month on a new auto payment, according to Edmunds.com.

That's a hefty price to pay, especially considering just how much money this eats up over time — not to mention the opportunity cost of not having this money freed up to save for retirement and take advantage of compound interest!

If your car payment is more than 10-15% of your monthly income, you might want to switch your car for something with a lower monthly payment, or opt to pay for something less expensive with cash.


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