Whether you’re a first-time homeowner or you’ve lived in the same property for decades, you should always be focusing on long-term savings. It’s not always a matter of earning more, either, because the economy certainly has its ebbs and flows. But there are plenty of things you can do as an individual and as a family to save a significant amount of money. Of course, as a millennial with student loans, credit card debt, and mortgage payments, it can feel impossible to tuck away funds for rainy days, let alone retirement.
“People want help saving for themselves,” said Corey Bozarth, product director at Yahoo Finance. “They complain, ‘I can’t put aside money. But it is so easy to get into savings.’ They appreciate the accountability of a group setting. The money you put in is the money you get out. But working with others keeps users motivated. They don’t want to see other users stop making contributions and not get to their goal. You feel better when you’re saving with someone you can personalize.”
Some stuff is certainly more significant than others, but it’s important to remember that every penny counts, truly. Here are some of the best ways to save money in 2018:
Record all your expenses
Even if you’re smart about your spending in all aspects of life, it’s going to be virtually impossible to save a substantial amount of money if you’re not being diligent about your finical records. You should document and record every single purchase so you can have an exact idea on how much you’re spending on everything from necessities to guilty pleasures. Every coffee you buy should be recorded as well as every car payment you make. Once you have all that data, organize them all categorically and total each amount. After you’ve outlined all your spending habits, you’ll be able to construct a more accurate budget for your future savings plans.
Stop procrastinating on home maintenance!
In the moment, it can be tempting to keep putting off that long-awaited home improvement project. Too many young people are forced to choose between student loans, mortgage payments, and basic home maintenance. Yet in the long run this procrastination will always cost you.
For instance, your heating and cooling expenses might be through the roof and you don’t even know it. Your best bet is to consult with an HVAC professional and have someone experienced visit your home and take a look at each one of your HVAC systems. Replacing your central air conditioning equipment, for example, especially systems that are older than 15 years old, can result in major energy savings. Additionally, you should focus on keeping your home properly insulated as well. Having good insulation can even reduce your heating and cooling expenses by over 40% — HVAC professionals can help.
Set short-term and long-term savings goals
You can’t just have a blanked goal of “saving money” in the back of your head. You have to have something to actually save towards. It’s essential to not only focus on your long-term savings, but your short-term finances as well. If your short-term finances aren’t in order, you won’t have enough money to use during emergencies or spontaneous trips. Make sure you’re keeping your retirement in mind as you save for the long-term, as well as your children’s future education and any down payments or major home remodeling projects you’re planning.
Obviously, there are hundreds of additional ways you and your family can save money, but hopefully these few tips help get you on the right track. From tossing some change in your Piggy bank to having the right insulation in your home — start saving as soon as possible!