Last year you splurged on your favorite things, you didn’t clip any coupons, and you barely had the time to go on holiday, let alone hunt out a bargain. So you ended up paying full price for almost everything, and concluded the year like you finished every month: desperately awaiting your January paycheck, with not nearly enough pennies in the piggy bank.
To initiate you into the new year, we’re going to help you get into good habits. Here’s some money saving ideas to enable you to make a few modest changes so you can hang on to more cash in 2017.
1. You didn’t set realistic goals
For 2017, create a savings goal that is more compelling to you than a whimsical purchase, then keep this goal front of mind by sticking it to the fridge and bathroom mirror. Make your goal SMART (specific, measurable, attainable, realistic and time orientated), chop it into manageable milestones and celebrate each one.
Begin by using this free savings calculator
to calculate how much you need to put aside each month.
2. You weren’t disciplined
Budgeting is a learned skill that requires discipline which is why so many people draw up a plan and don’t end up sticking to it.
To successfully save in 2017 you need to be focused and consistent to make sure your money only goes where you need it to go. Once you’ve adapted to budgeting you’ll find it isn’t about depriving yourself of certain treats, it’s about giving yourself the freedom to choose to spend or save where necessary.
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3. You didn’t know where your money was going
With so many apps on offer to help track spending, it’s easy to work out where you can cut back.
For 2017 try apps like Spending tracker, Budget Tracker and Wally which are all free to use on your smartphone, once you’ve analyzed where your money is going, cut out the purchases you can live without.
4. You paid too much interest on credit cards
When you got the urge to splurge, you let ‘future you’ deal with the repercussions and whipped out your credit card.
Don’t let high interest payments on your credit card eat away at your monthly budget in 2017. If you can pay the credit bill off in full every month, fine. If you can’t, and you are tempted to spend more money than you have, throw away the credit card!
5. You didn’t prioritize saving
To put it bluntly, you just didn’t try. The reason you’ve entered 2017 with little in your savings account, emergency fund or retirement fund is because you didn’t make saving a priority.
Why not save yourself a hardship in 2017 by setting up automatic deposits through your bank so a fixed amount of your monthly paycheck goes directly into your savings. What you can’t see, you can’t spend.
What’s your saving motivation for 2017? Whether you want to buy a property, go on holiday, pay for schooling or top up that retirement fund, make sure you keep it front of mind every month.
Make your motto “if I don’t need, I won’t buy it”, if you do need it, re-assess your budget and see how you can afford it. Don’t be whimsical in 2017, before you make a purchase, remember your savings goal and ensure you can ‘pay yourself first.’
Bonus Tip: Start tracking your investments.
It’s easy to do with a free online financial dashboard offered by Globaleye. The GVS dashboard
enables you to keep track of your investments wherever you are, whenever you need to access them.