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5 Proven Ways to Save Money Fast

What you'll learn: Ways you can save money fast

EXPECTED READ TIME:4 MINUTES

If you’re looking for ways to save money fast, there are several strategies you can use. Many of those strategies can easily be adapted to fit your budget and lifestyle.

Ways to Save Money Fast

  • Set up a budget
  • Examine your spending
  • Negotiate on price
  • Start a side hustle
  • Set up automatic savings

Savings not only helps you rely on money set aside for emergencies, large purchases, and even your retirement, it also provides peace-of-mind knowing you and your family are prepared for unexpected expenses or loss of income.

With some persistence and a little “belt-tightening,” you can start saving money fast. Take a minute to learn more about each proven way to save.

Set Up a Budget

This is an easy first step that anyone and everyone should do. No one likes to feel limited or controlled but growing your savings will take some discipline.

Start by examining what you’re saving for. If you’re saving for a new home or the down payment on a car, your savings schedule has a time limit. Saving for a comfortable retirement or budgeting to start a family takes a different strategy.

In general, it’s best to set aside 20% of your net monthly income into savings. That will leave you with about 80% of your family income to cover regular expenses, including some discretionary spending.

Seeing it all may help it feel more real, so consider recording all your daily expenses and see where your money goes. This includes utilities, meals, and online and in-store purchases. You’ll be surprised how quickly a few casual purchases add up.

Examine Your Spending

Living with a budget also lets you see where you can cut back or where you can save with some cheaper options. That barista coffee might seem like a little luxury but just two visits a week for you and your spouse can total $1000 each year. You can save a ton and get out of line by making quality coffee at home. That’s just one example.

Streaming services, gym memberships, subscriptions, seasonal shopping, nights out, and “retail therapy” are a few areas to cut back or replace in order to ramp up your monthly savings. Buying in bulk and clipping/downloading coupons are other ways to contribute to your new savings without sacrificing what you enjoy.

Negotiate and Research

It’s easy to get used to paying the same amount each month on essential services. With a little digging and a few determined phone calls, you may be able to get a better deal just by asking somebody for one. Companies often change their pricing structures or service packages — you just need to find them.

The same goes for professional services and major purchases. Don’t jump on the first offer, even if it sounds like a deal. Take a moment to look around, ask friends and neighbors and wait for a time when demand and prices normally decline. This strategy will take some time, but soon you’ll be good at it and will start saving money fast.

Create a Side Hustle

Since building up savings is a bottom-line activity, you can also look at it from the other side and see how you can earn more money. You could think about changing jobs or maybe even starting a side hustle.

Many people first think of the gig economy, but you don’t have to be limited to what’s cool and trendy. Selling off old possessions such as jewelry, clothes, gadgets, and collectibles brings in revenue and declutters your space.

Fix or set up computers, paint homes, sell crafted items or tasty treats, or adopt an aspect of your profession into a side business. Keep in mind that it’ll take away some of your downtime, so make it something you enjoy doing.

Use a Credit Card Responsibly

Credit cards that offer rewards programs and cash back on purchases can boost savings through your everyday purchases. Shop around for the best offers, often reserved for new cardholders, and put your automatic credit card expenses on the new account. Then apply the rewards to future purchases or sweep those bonus reward dollars right into your savings account.

Automate Your Savings

To help make regular savings even easier, many banks and credit unions can set up an automatic funds transfer option on your accounts. You can arrange a set amount of funds in checking or a portion of your paycheck to be transferred to savings. This convenient, automatic service not only takes it off your to-do list but also takes the sting out of seeing less income coming in each month. This strategy, like the others, is designed to get you off to a fast start and keep your long-term financial goals on track.

Next Steps for Saving Money Fast

Now it’s time to get started. Your next step is to start your budget. Doing this will allow you to set a goal for how much money you want to save each month. And if you want to save money fast, you’ll have to be disciplined with your budget, so try to be strict. Don’t worry. You’ve got this.

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