The beginning of the New Year is a good time for promises, wishes and deciding upon goals for the next period. Although many times we end up not keeping those promises, we can only hope that this year will be different. When it comes to finances, there is no better time to save than the month of January.
Here are a few tips to save money in 2017:
1. Be aware what your expenses are
The first step to saving is calculating the monthly expenses. For a month, you should write down each expense and at the end of the month divide them in categories and calculate for each category the total.
2. Divide the budget
Once you have calculated the expenses and you also wrote down the income, you can start making a budget to cover your current expenses as well as a reserve fund for emergency expenses such as an unexpected repair for the house or the car.
3. Start a saving plan
Considering the monthly income and expenses, you can decide upon a sum of money that you can save every month. Your budget might look like no saving is possible, however, keep in mind that even small amounts of money, let’s say $50 or $100 per month can make a big difference after some time.
4. Decide what your objectives are
Some people will decide that they just want to save a certain amount of money per month and this will be their goal. For others the objectives can take different forms. For example, maybe you would like to go on a holiday in an exotic country or get a new car or redecorate the house. If your goals are of this type, you should calculate what the total costs would be and then how long it will take you to save all the money required. Focusing on the objective should make saving more fun and easy.
5. Follow up with your savings plan
If your saving objectives are for short or medium term, there is not much point in keeping the money in a bank deposit. However, you might find it very motivating to see them adding up in a jar. This is also a good method to get your children to save and contribute to the family’s objective. You will see that in a short time, your exotic holiday will be within reach.
Different people have different priorities. If you want to have them all at once: the holiday, the new car, the redecoration of the house you might be disappointed to see that there is not enough money to do them all and even decide to give up on saving altogether. It is important to know that if you have multiple objectives, you should save in parallel for all of them, but the one that you consider a priority should get more money every month. This way you can make sure that at least some of your dreams will come true this year, all with the help of saving.