What are the habits that allow some people manage their money better?
Find ways to spend less and reduce expenses where you can — though it may require effort and creative thinking.
Knowing how much money you have coming in and how much is going out is the greatest benefit. This is accomplished by creating and following a budget and actively monitoring spending. Focus on what you can control within your budget to achieve financial success.
Try and direct most of the money that you save from reduced spending into saving for long term goals.
Put First Things First
What is the first thing you pay every month? Do you pay your mortgage first? Perhaps you pay your utility bills first. But perhaps you could consider paying something else first? Maybe yourself?
Paying yourself first means that you invest in your savings, then you pay other bills. Through payroll deduction your money goes directly to your Credit Union account every pay day. It helps you to build up savings and to pay off any loan that you take out with the credit union. The best thing about payroll deduction is that after the first couple of months you get used to the money coming out and so don’t really notice that it’s missing.
Just because you are looking to spend less money doesn’t mean you have to benefit less or receive less value. You can find plenty of win-win situations when saving money. For example, preparing most meals at home instead of dining out… Of course, making food at home is cheaper than paying the bill at a restaurant, but eating at home is healthier as well. The benefit of making your own food goes beyond just saving money, you’re in the comfort of your own home, you get to choose the company and the background music. Though someone does have to do the dishes!!
Learn from your mistakes
Most people don’t start out trying to budget or be ‘sensible with money’. They start out as “normal” spenders and end up with credit card bills and student loans.
While most people think primarily in terms of having more and better stuff than their friends and neighbours, frugal people reach an understanding of how much they need to be happy, which is often far less than most people think they need to be happy.
‘Sharpen Your Saw’
If you’re reading this, you are most definitely sharpening your saw! If you’ve ever tried to cut something with a dull saw, you know that it takes a lot of work and a long time to get the job done. Keeping your saw sharp is time well spent.
Sharpening your saw means to continue learning and finding new inspiration to get the most from your money. Seeking out ideas on saving money, whether from blogs, podcasts, books, and by talking with your Credit Union or friends is always a good idea.
Reading about the financial success and failures of others can also provide inspiration to keep your goals firmly in mind and on track.
If you have any great ideas or suggestions for how our members can save money we would love it if you would share them with us.