Now that the new year has already begun, it’s a good time to take a look at the full picture of your finances and start to cut out any unnecessary purchases that you can so you can start to put your hard-earned money to better use. With the extra money you can start building your emergency fund and starting asking what the sep ira rules are so you can finally increase contributions to grow your retirement fund so you have plenty to live off when you finally do decide to not worry about work any longer.
First Take a Look at All Expenses
You probably have a pretty good idea how much your monthly bills are because you (hopefully) pay them each month, but what about food, gas, and spending money, how much are you spending each month? That could be a good explanation for the spike in your credit card balance if more money is going out instead of coming in, so it may be time to start tracking purchases by taking a look at last month’s debit or credit card statement to see exactly where all of the money is going and try to back off from there.
Get Rid of the Easy Ones
If you are like most who sign up for a gym membership, you use it regularly for a few months and then the visits become less and less and pretty soon you’re paying every month but haven’t gone since last year. Another way would be if you have any newspaper subscriptions that you are still paying for, although you take the Sunday paper every week and walk it immediately to the recycle bin and just read the online version. Those could be good areas to free up even if it’s just a few dollars every month.
Start Going Grocery Shopping
Eating out is where you really start to feel the financial burden. I mean it’s expensive to go to dinner yourself, let alone as a couple or an entire family, it probably cost what an entire grocery shopping trip would be, and that food you could make last for a week or two. If you can avoid going out to dinner and start going grocery shopping and prepare your meals at home, you can really see the savings add up each month, probably in the few hundreds of dollars in no time.
Having money doesn’t come easy, so you have to make sacrifices when you can and here in lies your cable bill. While you have been used to flipping around channels since you were a kid, now that we live in an On Demand and DVR word, there is really no need to watch live TV any longer, unless it’s sports, and even that can be questionable with all the commercials. If you can ditch cable and go for streaming services for around $10 a month you can at least save a hundred dollars a month, and you can still get an HD antenna for around $20 to get local channels.