Here were are in 2016; I can hardly believe it. What I can believe is that many of us made some bad money decisions last year. But I have some money saving lessons for the new year to help you get off to the right start!
First let me start by saying that beating yourself up for your mistakes is not the right way to start. I think that blame/shame keeps us frozen and not taking any forward action. So if you’ve been doing that, stop.
Ok, enough with the self-help talk. Let’s get down to some nitty-gritty money saving lessons!
“True economy consists in always making the income exceed the outgo.” – PT Barnum
Money Saving Lessons for the New Year
Credit is so over…ditch that plastic dead weight! Make 2016 your year of CASH.
Entertain yourself at home. Pop some popcorn and see what the latest flick on Netflix is – stop spending $50+ going to the movies or out to dinner. Our family loves playing games together; some of our favorites are Dutch Blitz, Apples to Apples and our newest card game Five Crowns.
Focus on quality with big purchases. If you are planning to make any big purchases this year, save up your money for quality instead of the first thing you can afford. It may take a little longer but the chances are greater for well-made items to stand the test of time; which saves you a lot in the long run.
Build a group of those who are dedicated to saving too. A community of savers can join together for some buying power! For instance, you can purchase a whole cow and divide that equally among the group. You’ll typically save from the cost of the store (cutting out the middle man) and getting a better quality meat. This group can also set up bartering, have swaps of clothes, toys, coupons, etc. It also doesn’t hurt to have supportive, like-minded friends.
Set budgets on gift giving. Focus on giving something from the heart instead of breaking your budget. Simple gifts, practical gifts and handmade gifts are a good start!
“We make ourselves rich by making our wants few.” – Henry David Thoreau
Are you still with me? Ok, let’s keep up the money saving lessons with 5 more!Grow everything you can. I have mentioned this a few times but let me say it again…GARDEN. Not only can a garden give you healthier foods, they can save you money. It make take a few seasons to get yourself into the groove of what and how much to plant; but it will help your budget in the long run.
If you don’t have an emergency fund, start one! One of the biggest money problems we all fall into is the failure to plan for emergencies. It could be unplanned medical bills or repairs on our homes or cars; whatever it is they will happen. If we don’t have an emergency fund then we are forced to borrow or use our credit cards….no no no NO. Work to get a $1000 in that fund for starters, then think bigger like a month of bills and expenses and so on.
Stop shopping for “fun”. I’ll admit, this is not a big problem for me because I loathe the mall. But I have been known to hit a garden center for a little “window shopping”. We must stop this. Go to stores ONLY when you have something to buy and don’t browse. They don’t call them impulse buys for nothing…
Purge, sell and save! Do this 2 – 3 times a year: go through the house and collect items and clothes that you don’t use or want. Then have a yard sale. Take the money from these sales and put them in your emergency fund! Your house will be cleaner and you’ll get a good start on your savings.
“Beware of little expenses; a small leak will sink a great ship” -Benjamin Franklin
Shop used. If you are going to shop, start shopping used first. Thrift stores, Craigslist and yard sales are great ways to find things you need at a great price. I’ve found clothes, canning jars, games, puzzles, homeschool books, furniture and so much more. BUT BUT BUT…don’t go shopping used for fun either!!!!
So there you have it, 10 money-saving lessons for the new year. Not too bad, right? There is so much more but these are a few good places to start. Have you made any money resolutions for 2016? I’d love to hear about them – let me know in the comments.
Here are a few more money-saving articles for you!
Never miss a post ~ Sign up for the Imperfectly Happy Newsletter