Our capacity to delay immediate gratification for a bigger reward further down the track is always something we’ve struggled with as humans. Nothing illustrates this more than the almost universal struggle to save money. Whether you’re saving for a new car or your first home, disciplined budgeting is an absolute necessity to achieve your goal.
A good budget helps you stay on top of where your money is going, allowing you to organise spending and savings with your financial goals in mind. It should help you consistently meet your saving goals and keep on top of expenses while allowing you extra money for unexpected situations and leisure.
However, the real struggle is sticking to the budget once you set it. You have your savings goals but what daily actions can you take to help you achieve them? Below are some simple daily habits that can make a difference.
Make Your Own Meals
Are you a fiend for catch ups at the cafe with friends and family? Do you find yourself always buying lunch when you’re at work or otherwise out and about? Feel lazy from time to time and decide to order some UberEats instead of making your own dinner?
While cutting out smashed avo on toast won’t get you your first home on it’s own, cutting the amount of money you spend on meals out can save an extraordinary amount. Dining out is one of the biggest expenses for most households. Take time every week to grocery shop and meal plan. The financial and health benefits are enormous.
Get into the Habit of Borrowing and Bargain Hunting
Borrow books and DVDs from the library rather than buying them new. If you need tools, equipment or something else, ask your family or friends if you can borrow things off them. Buy second hand goods to reduce costs further from places like op shops and online marketplaces.
Cancel Your Gym Membership
Eliminate those monthly gym fees by opting for cheaper or free ways to get exercise. The options are endless, from riding to work and walking your dog to going for the occasional bushwalk or swimming laps at your local pool or beach. Take a friend with you when you exercise to stay motivated.
If you really feel like you need the extra motivation of being at a gym or exercising in a group environment, opt for a cheaper option such as joining a sporting team, a running group or signing up for group personal training.
Cutting Down on Coffee and Alcohol
If you’re spending money on $4 coffees from cafes and $15 drinks at bars on a regular basis, you’re probably well aware of how disproportionately large that area of expenditure can be. Try giving up or cutting down on your alcohol or coffee intake. Your finances and your health will thank you for it.
Need Help With Budgeting and Finance?
For more assistance from friendly financial professionals, get in touch with the team at Kaboodle Finance.