For most of us spending money is a lot more fun than saving money. However most, if not all, wish that we would have saved more by now.
Here are a few helpful ideas about saving:
1. Set Goals
If you are saving for retirement, a new car, college, a wedding, or something else it is important to set goals. Be sure to write your goals down. Once you have your ultimate goal defined, break it down into monthly achievable goals. Be realistic when you set your goals so that you can comfortably set the money aside each month.
2. Live within your Budget
It isn't always fun to have a budget or to live within that budget, but staying in budget will help you keep control over your expenses and allow you to set aside more money for the future. Most experts recommend that you save at least 15% of your monthly income. So be sure to include savings into your budget.
3. Save before you Spend
Save first, spend later - Otherwise there might not be as much as you would like at the end of the month to reach your savings goals. So follow this simple rule – “pay yourself first”, spend later and you’ll always be happy that you did.
4. Save tax refunds and work bonuses
Most of us like to splurge on something expensive when we get our tax refund or a bonus check. However, doing just that can lead us to make unwise financial decisions. Instead, plan to use these to reach your savings goal sooner.
5. Get a raise? Save.
You don't have to save all of your raise but the more of it that you save the more flexibility you will have in the future and the sooner you will reach your savings goals.
6. Company 401(k)
Take advantage of your company’s 401(k) plan. It’s a “cheaper” way to save as your contributions are deducted before calculating taxes due. This means a $100 contribution doesn’t necessarily mean your net paycheck is $100 less. Some companies will even match up to 50% of your savings up to 6% of your salary.
Even if you don't use all of these ideas right now; using some of them will certainly help put you on the right path to a future with more savings.