Everyone promises themselves that this is the year their going to save money and become a responsible adult but it almost never works out that way.
In order to actually save money this year, you have to have a plan. A plan that translates and affects every part of your life. This way, you start your day with a budgeting mentality and slowly but surely it becomes a lifestyle.
Saving money is hard but if you follow these simple hacks, we promise you’ll have enough money for that bag you’ve been eyeing, a vacation or something more practical (fx rate is real) like your rent.
1) Envelope budgeting system
No one sends letters anymore but that doesn’t mean you cant still use envelopes. Here’s how it works. Simply label the envelopes according to spending categories (food, travel, rent etc) and put money aside for each. Don’t spend any more money when the money in each envelope is finished until the scheduled time to refill. This method helps you track where your money goes, so you can see how you spend and perhaps where you spend too much. So if the food money finishes – soak garri until the next month! Tough life.
2) Buy in Bulk
Buying in bulk is one of the oldest tricks in the budgeting book. When you buy in bulk, you can track exactly what you are buying for a period of time. Shopping every week or every other week can cause you to buy unnecessary things that you ideally wouldn’t need. Try writing your shopping list for 3 months. Pretend you’re going into hibernation and you won’t be able to come up for air not to talk of deodorant. Stock up and see how much you save. You’ll be surprised.
3) Join the packed lunch gang
You will never spend as much money as you do on food. Fact. Studies have shown that most people who spend money frivolously – do so, on food. Every time you order lunch in the office, you spend probably 50% more than you need to be on lunch. If you’re too busy during the week to make your lunch – use the weekends to meal prep and store them in the freezer. You’ll be surprised how much extra cash you’ll have.
4) Kill your expensive habits for cheaper ones
You like the feeling of grabbing a coffee from your local coffee shop. It helps you kick start your day and makes you feel like Carrie Bradshaw. News flash: you are not Carrie. So, stop pretending and get real. A tin of Nescafe coffee costs about N300 and lasts for over a month. Tip: Buy one of those cute reusable coffee cups and use that for your instant coffee. You’ll still feel like Carrie… You just won’t be broke.
5) Learn how to use your savings account
The truth is, most people don’t know how to use a savings account and treat it like a regular account. Your savings account shouldn’t even have an ATM card so you aren’t tempted to take from it. You should literally forget you have this account. Each month, a percentage of your cash should be direct debited into that account and thats it. You don’t touch it until you have reached the figure you have been saving towards. Also, saving accounts are those rainy day saviors. You always want to make sure you’re covered, no matter what.