You’re never too young to start saving money, but you’re never too old, either! The sweet spot is that season in your life when you’re able to invest your savings and grow your money through interest-gaining choices, but it’s not necessary.
It’s always a good time to focus on saving money, whether you’re trying to fill up a piggy bank or are aiming for boosting your savings account.
No matter how old you are, you can get control of your finances, get ahead, and save for whatever your goals are. These five tips will teach you how!
1. Start Small
Would one dollar a day really be missed out of your budget? For some people, the answer is yes. For others, they could feasibly move up to five dollars or more per day and still live their normal lifestyle.
Choose an amount that won’t impact your bills too much. Start putting that money into a high-yield savings account, even if it is seven dollars each week.
As you get used to living with a little bit less and you realize it isn’t bothering you much, bump up your daily target gradually. Soon, you’ll find yourself debating whether that mocha grande coffee is worth the money, or whether you’d rather put it in your savings!
2. Find a Good Beginner’s Investment
Contrary to popular belief, you don’t have to be rich to start investing. There are many types of platforms that allow you to jump in at any level you want, as long as you meet at least a minimum investment amount.
Crowdfunding is a popular beginner-friendly investing option. When you choose to invest in something like real estate or other legitimate portfolio opportunities, many companies have zero or low annual fees. Minimum starting investments are frequently around $500.
Choose your investment based on your preferred level of risk. The higher the risk, the greater the potential yield. How much risk you’re willing to take may depend on your age and need for money growth.
3. Create and Stick to a Budget
Budgeting is part of every business and industry for a reason. It works!
When you create your weekly or monthly budget and stick to it, you will quickly see the results of knowing where your money is going. Without a budget, you’ll pay your bills, but do you really know what you’re paying?
In a thorough budget analysis, the first thing you do is evaluate each bill. Are you ahead? Behind? Barely making the minimum payments? What are the penalties if you are late? What are the interest rates?
With those important puzzle pieces in your mind, you can move on to looking at how much each payoff amount is and what you can get rid of quickly.
Some financial experts recommend that you don’t put anything in savings until your debt is paid. This is one strategy of thinking, since you are likely paying a higher interest rate than your savings would be earning.
As you devise your budget plan, try a blended approach at first. If you can, make more than the minimum payments on bills you are almost done with. Then, start saving that monthly payment once the debt is gone.
4. Cut the Fat in Your Spending
You are probably spending money in some hidden corners of your bank account that you’re not even aware of. When you purposely search for these unnecessary expenses, you can trim the fat in your spending and put the money towards saving.
Watch for these common fatty spending places:
- Monthly subscription services you don’t need/use but forgot to cancel
- High interest rates on credit cards that could be refinanced
- Impulse buys on things you really didn’t need
- Home decor purchases
- Last-minute grocery runs instead of meal planning prep or coupon cutting
- Non-strategic entertainment (restaurants, fast-food runs, expensive TV subscriptions)
You don’t have to cancel all the fun in your life, but try to be smarter about how you spend your money.
Eat at restaurants when they have coupons or discounts. Plan your meals ahead and shop at grocery stores when they have what you need on sale. Failure to plan your financial health is planning to fail!
5. Get Professional Advice
Regardless of your age, there is someone out there who can give you advice to help you save. You just need to seek them out and ask!
When it’s what they do for a living, they are usually more than willing and able to sit down with you and discuss your options. If you have to pay a consultation fee to learn their secrets, the return on your investment will probably be more than worth it.
Don’t be too stubborn to ask for help, but don’t trust just anyone with your money, either. Talk to a professional that comes well-recommended and then get a second opinion before you give anyone access to your finances.
There tend to be two types of people in the world: those who can save money with barely any effort, and those for whom money burns a hole in their pocket.
It doesn’t matter which category you fall into or how old you are; these five tips will help you improve your money sense and increase your savings!