Saturday, September 17, 2011

10 Ways To Turn Money Leaks Into Big Savings

DripsImage by Images by John 'K' via FlickrThey say, in life, it's the little things that matter. This rule also applies when it comes to your money. Many people have little money leaks that they may not even realize. Over the years these tiny amounts of money add up to hundreds of dollars. Being conscious of where your money is going is the difference between winning and losing in the money game.

I have listed 10 ways to save money and plug up those money leaks:

Savings Tips

1. Consider your needs vs. your wants. Think about items you purchase on a regular basis. These add up. Where can you save?

  • Do you eat out at restaurants a lot? 
  • Can you cut back on daily expenses, such as coffee, candy, soda, or cigarettes? 
  • Do you have services you do not really need, such as cable television or a cell phone? 

2. Set up a direct deposit and an automatic transfer to your savings account.

  • When you get paid, put a portion in savings through direct deposit or automatic transfer. 
  • If you have a checking account, you can sign up to have money moved into your savings account every month. What you don’t see, you don’t miss! 

3. Pay your bills on time. This saves the added expense of:

  • Late fees, extra finance charges 
  • Disconnection fees for phone, electricity, or other services 
  • Fees to reestablish connection if your service is disconnected 
  • The cost of eviction, repossession and bill collectors 

4. If you use check-cashing stores regularly, you might be paying $3 - $5 for each check you cash. Consider opening a checking account at a bank or credit union.

5. If you get a raise or bonus from your employer, save that extra money.

6. If you have paid off a loan, keep making the monthly payments to yourself. You can save or invest the money for your future goals.

7. Avoid debt that does not help build long-term financial security. For example, avoid borrowing money for things that do not provide financial benefits or that do not last as long as the loan. Examples include: a vacation, clothing, and dinners out in restaurants.

8. Save your change at the end of the day. Take that change and deposit it into the bank (every week or month).

9. When you get a tax refund, save as much of it as possible.

10. If your work offers a retirement plan, such as 401(k) or 403(b) plan that deducts money from your paycheck, join it! Most employers will match up to $.50 on each dollar you contribute. The matched amount is free money!

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