Let 2024 Be The Year You Slash Spending and Save Money

Saving money in 2024

Want to start saving money and slash your spending habits? Here is a guide to help you with some tips.

Create a Budget and Stick to It

I have already created a guide to budgeting, so give that a read for a more thorough guide, but here is a smaller version.

You should start by listing all sources of income and categorizing expenses into fixed (e.g., rent/mortgage, utilities) and variable (e.g., groceries, entertainment) and make sure you include all expenses. Once the income and expenses are listed, calculate the difference between the two to determine how much can be saved each month.

When it comes to saving money, make sure you're setting achievable savings goals that are not out of reach for you, which is why doing a budget is so important. You need to track every expense as well. I would recommend using an app such as Mint.

You also need to differentiate between needs and wants and focus on fulfilling essential needs first and cutting back on things that aren't actually really needed and impulse purchases

Ditch Expensive Habits

Identifying and breaking expensive habits is crucial in saving money. These habits can include eating out frequently, impulse shopping, or subscribing to unnecessary services. By recognizing these habits and making conscious efforts to break them, you will significantly reduce your expenses and save more money.

To identify expensive habits, keep an eye on your expenses that you're tracking via your budgeting which I explained above. This will provide a clear picture of where the money is going and highlight any patterns of excessive spending. Once these habits are identified, it becomes easier to take steps towards breaking them.

One to keep an eye out for is something like buying a coffee every day, which many people do and don't think much of it. But over time this can add up to a lot that could be better spent and used on your goals. Not that you should deprive yourself, but it is definitely a habit that could save many people quite a bit of money over time if done every day.

Breaking expensive habits requires discipline and commitment. Here are some tips to help:

Set limits: 

Determine a specific amount that can be spent on non-essential items each month that fits in with your savings goal and stick to it. This helps create boundaries and prevents overspending.

Find alternatives: 

Instead of eating out at restaurants, try cooking at home or packing lunches for work. Instead of buying new clothes, consider shopping at second hand stores instead. Finding alternatives to expensive habits can save a significant amount of money.

Practice delayed gratification: 

Before making a purchase, take some time to think about whether it's truly necessary or if it can be postponed. Often, the desire for instant gratification leads to impulsive spending. 

Breaking expensive habits not only saves money but also promotes a healthier and more mindful approach to spending. It allows you to focus on what truly matters and prioritize your financial goals.

Shop Smart: Use Coupons and Discounts

Using coupons and discounts is an effective way to save money on everyday purchases. It's important to take advantage of these opportunities to maximize savings and reduce expenses.

Coupons can be found in various places, such as newspapers, magazines, online coupon websites, and store apps. It's worth spending some time researching and collecting coupons for items that are regularly purchased. 

You could also plan your purchases around sales and make sure you always compare prices before making a purchase.

Reduce Your Energy Bills

Reducing energy bills not only saves money but also contributes to environmental sustainability. 

Here are some tips for reducing energy bills:

Use energy-efficient appliances: 

Invest in energy-efficient appliances that have a high Energy Star rating. These appliances consume less electricity and can result in significant savings over time.

Unplug electronics when not in use: 

Unplugging devices when not in use can help reduce energy consumption and lower electricity bills.

Adjust thermostat settings: 

Lowering the thermostat by a few degrees in winter and raising it in summer will result in savings on heating and cooling costs. 

Cut Your Cable and Streaming Services

With the rise of streaming platforms, many people are paying for multiple subscriptions, resulting in high monthly costs. Evaluate which services you actually use and get value from and cut back on unnecessary subscriptions, you will significantly reduce your expenses.

Some streaming platforms also offer a selection of free content or free service with ads that doesn't require a paid subscription. Also try public libraries as they offer a wide range of movies and TV shows that can be borrowed for free. This provides access to entertainment without the need for subscriptions or rental fees.

Cook at Home and Meal Prep

Cooking at home and meal prepping is a cost-effective way to save money on food expenses. Eating out frequently can be expensive, and the cost can really add up over time. By preparing meals at home and planning ahead, you will reduce yourfood budget.

Meal prepping involves preparing meals in advance and portioning them out for the week. This saves time and eliminates the need for last-minute takeout or convenience foods. By dedicating a few hours each week to meal prepping, you will ensure that they have healthy and affordable meals readily available.

Buy Second-Hand or Refurbished Items

Many items, such as clothing, furniture, electronics, and appliances, can be found in excellent condition at a fraction of the cost of new items. 

Try buying from one of these options next time you need to make a purchase.

Second hand stores: 

Second hand stores offer a wide range of clothing, furniture, and household items at affordable prices. These items are often in good condition and can be found at a fraction of the cost of new items.

Online marketplaces: 

Online platforms  provide a vast selection of second-hand items as well where you can find a bargain. Ebay and Facebook Marketplace are always good places to look.

Refurbished electronics: 

Many electronics manufacturers offer refurbished versions of their products at a discounted price. These items have been tested and repaired to meet the manufacturer's standards and often come with a warranty.

Second-hand and refurbished items are cheaper than buying new ones and when you shop in second hand stores you never know what you may find as well. The thrill of a good bargain hunt is a little hobby of mine!

Negotiate Your Bills and Fees

Negotiating bills and fees is an effective way to save money on recurring expenses. Many service providers are open to negotiation, especially if you tell them you are struggling, they have a duty of care to provide for customers. 

Before attempting to negotiate, research the competitors so you know if you could potentially save money by switching and use this as a bargaining tool. Even if you don't save money, some companies may bundle in extras for the same money to keep you as a customer!

The worse that will happen is they tell you to do one!

Small changes can have a big impact on your overall financial well-being. Over time, these small changes can add up and lead to substantial savings. Remember that saving money is a gradual process and requires discipline and consistency. However, the benefits of saving money far outweigh the temporary sacrifices that may need to be made.

I hope everyone has a wonderful and frugal 2024. 

And check out all of my resources on Frugality Father from one page.

Previous Post Next Post