Posted on Sunday 08 January 2017
With a new year comes a new chance to gain control of your money, and set yourself up for a future of financial freedom.
Maybe you've had enough of living paycheque-to-paycheque, or perhaps you’re hoping to buy a house. Whatever your goals are, getting serious about saving takes proper planning and consistency. Whether you're just getting started with saving money or you've been doing so for a while, here are our top tips to help you make the most of your money this year.
Although there are different money-saving tips, you only need to follow the ones you find applicable and reasonable. After all, what works for everyone is different. Leverage what works for you and focus on them accordingly. It's great to get advice from people, but ultimately, do that which suits your financial needs. This way, you can decide whether you truly need installment loans, same-day loans, or none at all.
Identify your goals
By pinpointing your savings goals for this year, you will be able to set a realistic savings schedule.
Having a great understanding of your finances requires writing down your monthly income, expenditures, and ongoing debts or repayments. Looking at each month, you should then be able to decide pm an amount that goes straight into savings.
So always start by setting some targets and then move forward. This doesn't mean you can spend money on cyber Monday but just do what works for you.
You can even set timelines for meeting your targets, which is a highly recommended practice by the way. Once you start adding the dates, it will have a very positive psychological effect on you. As it will make your goals seem achievable. With consistency and intentionality, your financial goals are indeed achievable.
Make a plan
Once you have clear financial goals and they are nicely laid out, it is time to make a plan for how you’re going to reach them. If you have many debts, now may be the time to consolidate them. Suppose you now understand the importance of investing and want to do more, now may be the time to research valuable assets.
It also may be worth researching the right savings account for you (preferably one with high returns). Reaching out to a financial professional such as a credit counselor or financial advisor may also be a wise move.
This will help you reach your 2021 savings goals in a very consistent manner. A great way of doing things on your own is by using spreadsheets. It's just a phenomenal way of keeping the 'house' in order.
It's amazing how a simple thing like a spreadsheet can help you map out things. We highly recommend that you either use Google docs or the classic Microsoft excel and start working on your financial plan. Don't forget to add an emergency fund to your plan as well.
Consider the future
While you may be saving for something in the near future (like a car or a downpayment), it is smart to also consider the distant future. Now may be the time to up your retirement fund contributions or re-invest some savings in a long-term account. You want to have a sustainable source of passive income. As such, you must plan for the long term.
Furthermore, plan to pass something on to the next generation. The importance of having money is to help you and your family meet your financial needs. If you put your mind to it, you can see this through. This way, the next generation will get a head start, which will also notably increase their chances of living a better life.
Cut back on spending
One of the easiest ways to improve your savings is to reduce how much time you spend at restaurants, hangouts, and more. It will also help if you create certain rules guiding your financial conduct. This may mean limiting yourself to one meal out a week, having designated “no spend” days, or cutting back on your gym membership.
Consider where you can cut costs, and remember that even small amounts of unexpected spending can really add up over a year. Time to start making your coffee at home.
However, if you think you can do fine without such rules, then you can do away with them. Saving money is great but you don't have to suffer while doing that. The whole goal of life is to have fun every day. So, have fun, do things that work for you in your way and amazing things will come your way naturally.