We are still fighting to get our finances under control. With loans to pay off and us wanting to build up some savings we are having to really stretch our already tight budget even further. One area we are really trying to focus on is dealing with the debt we have. We have a couple personal loans and some medical debt that all need to be paid off. I found this great article on how to get out of debt. Every bit of information I can get on debt payment is helpful to me. That involved me taking a real close look at where our money was going and where we could be saving money. I think that every budget has somewhere that extra money is being spent and could be cut back. So I examined ours and looked for where we could be saving money so we could start doing just that. I found a few things to start cutting back on and this is how we are saving money on a tight budget.
1. Go food shopping less. Going grocery shopping once a week for the majority of the weeks food. We had gotten in a bad habit of not keeping enough food in our house which led to us picking up take out too often. Which was not only bad for our finances but also bad for our health. Going shopping and getting what we need may be expensive that one day but having food at home saves us money in the long run.
2. Make going out a rarity. Start making going out to eat, getting an ice cream, Starbucks a special treat and not a regular occurrence. Through looking at where we were spending money I noticed way too much was going to “treats” such as these things and without realizing it they were really adding up. So now we are really making an effort to cut back on going out for food and special drinks. This is also why I put #1 about keeping food at home.
3. I recently started making my own cleaning supplies for around the house. It doesn’t save me a lot of money at one time but over time I think it will really add up and I feel better using more natural ingredients to clean wit instead of chemicals. There are lots f places you can get recipes for homemade cleaners. I use Melissa Maker’s from Clean my Space.
4. Have less stuff. We are going to have a yard sell to get rid of some of our extra clutter and things we don’t need which will give us some more money. We also sold video games and movies to get some extra money. In addition to getting rid of thing we also have made a real effort to buy less stuff. I buy too many books and my husband buys video game things and collectibles. These purchases add up and for the last month we haven’t bought any of these things so that is a good step.
5. Watch the automatic charges. I have a lot of stuff I’ve signed up for my blog that pulls out of our account automatically. So I went through our bank statement and looked at all the charges and reevaluated if I really used everything. Some things I used a lot and really need so I kept those. There were a few things I didn’t use enough to justify the expense so I canceled them. I ended up canceling almost $40 a month in things. I didn’t even realize that much was being spent on things I didn’t need. I make enough with my blog that I can spend money but IO don’t want to be wasting it on things I don’t need.
When you are on a tight budget like we are you have to make sure that every dollar you are spending counts. When it comes to money you have two choices make more or spend less. My husband and I are working on increasing our income but that can be tough. It is a working progress though so I’m hopeful. So in the mean time it’s all about spending less. So we are trying to spend less and stretch our dollars where we can. We don’t have extra to spend so we need to spend them wisely. These are some of the ways I’ve been doing that. I’m going to keep doing these while at the same time learning more ways to stretch a dollar. I think that saving money is a good habit to learn and even as we up our income I still want to learn what I can about saving money on a tight budget.