Spending money can be so easy these days with so many different and easy ways to pay. If you find yourself with a bit of a habit, try some of these simple steps to curb your spending and help you save.
Tip #1: The 30 Day Rule
The 30 day rule is just as it sounds: if you see something you like – maybe a pair of shoes, or a new coat, wait 30 days before purchasing it, and if you find you no longer want or need it, or even better: if you’ve completely forgotten about it; then don’t buy it! However, if that pair of shoes has not only left an image in your head but an imprint on your heart, then maybe you can consider giving them a new home.
The 30 day rule isn’t for everyone. Some people use 3 days (for the extreme impulse buyers) others use up to 2 months. It’s dependant on what you want to buy and your financial situation at the time. In any case, it is always worth asking yourself: do you really need it? And would the money be better spent elsewhere? Even if that elsewhere is just your savings account for the foreseeable future.
Tip #2: The 50-30-20 Rule
This one sounds trickier than it is. Once you’ve got your basic understanding and you begin to implement the system, it really is an easy one to live by! The way the 50-30-20 rule works is quite simple: you work out your after-tax income, then limit your necessity expenditure to 50% of that; 30% of your income goes towards the wants in your life: this may include a new dress for work, or a steak on a Saturday night, and the final 20% - brace yourselves! – must go straight into your savings account.
The 50-30-20 is really just a guide, if you can afford to save more than 20% of your income then it’s probably a good idea to think about doing it – your future self will thank you for it! And similarly, if your job or lifestyle requires you to spend more than 30% on items that aren’t your priority bills, then make the adjustment to fit your expenditure. However, don’t get confused between an ‘ooh I would like that’ and a ‘my old jeans don’t fit anymore!’, because that 30% will very quickly increase.
Tip #3: Save the Little Guys
It’s easy to forget about loose change and to chuck a fiver at things here and there because it doesn’t seem like much at the time: however, it soon adds up. If you saved £5 each week, you could have £260 after a year!
It’s nice to have a little money tucked away sometimes that you can spend on yourself without feeling guilty. One of the easiest ways to do this is to pick a coin or two coins even, and whenever you receive that coin in change: put it in a jar and save it for later. One of the best coins to use is the £2 coin; the jar will soon add up and £2 coins are rare enough that you won’t be constantly emptying your purse or wallet!
Sometimes it’s a good idea to put all loose change aside and keep it in your car so whenever you’re in a car park which requires a parking ticket, you’ll already have the change to hand – and it won’t feel like an added expense to the day because you’ve already got the money prepared.
Like anything in life, there is no hard and fast rule for dealing with spending habits. While something can work for some people, it may be no use to you at all. What we hope to present with this blog is a different way of looking at your income and your ability to save because money doesn’t have to be a doom and gloom subject, and when enjoyed in the right way, it can be enjoyed very well. The main thing to keep in mind is your way of living now, and what you hope to have in the future. If the two conflict each other, you may have to make some adjustments and hopefully, we have helped you out with a few tips and tricks to try, so you can complete those savings life goals!
If you are however finding yourself a bit sort this month and you haven't quite got your savings into gear, a payday loan might be what you need to help tide you over until next month's payday. At Clear And Fair we compare different direct lenders - all of which are regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority - so you can find the cheapest loan for your needs.