Prioritizing saving money has been engrained into our minds since we were young. We may even recall the saying, “A penny saved is a penny earned!” However, earning and saving that penny has proven to be a much harder task than we once thought. Life is expensive! Speaking honestly, there are several places where the money we earn gets wasted, but that doesn’t mean you can’t develop money saving practices that really add up. The following are some creative ways to save money; you won’t even realize you’re doing it!
1. Dump all loose coins every night
All that loose change weighing your pocket or purse down at the end of the day? Get into the habit of routinely emptying them out into a container or drawer by your bed. The key is to try to save this accumulation of change for as long as possible, then cash it in. Pro tip: if you go to the bank, you can get rolling paper and roll the coins yourself for an even bigger payout. It can even serve as a fun activity for the whole family and instill the principle of saving every penny in your young ones.
2. Pay your debts, but when you finish, keep paying the bill
Paying that car bill every month can be both daunting and satisfying at the same time. On the one hand, you may struggle to come up with the money and may wonder how you’ll ever pay the bill. But, once it is paid, you feel a sense of accomplishment and pride. Don’t stop there! Once your bill is paid, immediately start working on the next payment. Planning your bills out in advance should help relieve the check-to-check lifestyle that many of us are familiar with.
3. Save at least 70% of the unexpected money you receive
An extra pay, bonus, a return on the income statement, or any amount of money that you did not expect and that you received can be an extremely exciting reward. However, don’t immediately switch into “treat yourself mode.” Try getting into the habit of saving at least 70% of that money. Make an emergency fund if you do not already have it or pass it to your savings or investment account directly.
4. Automate savings
It is not a creative way to save, but it has been proven to be useful in eliminating the need for willpower. Allocate a certain amount or percentage of your income to be passed over to a savings account and automate it. This takes away the temptation to spend your entire paycheck and encourages healthy spending/saving habits. You may even want to consider investing that money in a low-cost index fund.
5. Make saving a game
While this game can be fun and educational to teach you how to save a child, the truth is that for an adult, it can also be fun, tempting, and profitable.
Put today 1 cent in a jar (yes, that little coin that looks like a button on the shirt). Tomorrow put 5 cents. On the third day, put 10 cents, 20 cents the next day, and so on. If you continue doing this throughout the year, you should be saving more than $20 in a single day. That comes out to more than $3,000 by the end of the year!
6. If you like to play, save playing
Although we do not recommend wasting time playing video games, you might as well profit financially if you’re going to play. Long Game and other applications offer real rewards for playing short online games. Use it as an additional way to save for your expenses. You are doing something you fun while also earning!
Now that you have a list of fun ways to save money, make sure you make it a habit. Not only will you be living a more disciplined and healthy lifestyle, but you will also be surprised at how much you actually earn!