For millions of people, living within their budget is a challenge. It’s hard for many people to live within their means for many different reasons. There are some that are not used to the need to watch how much they spend. There are others that don’t know what their means are or don’t know how to determine the difference between a need and a want. Those that are having trouble with living within their means should take the time to understand why.
One of the biggest reasons that people don’t live within their means is because they don’t know how to determine what is a need and a want. That is something that is very important for people to know and understand. A need is something that one can’t live without successfully. Needs are uniform for many people: food, shelter, water, and clothing. Those things are the basics for every human in the world. What people want is what sets everyone apart and determines the lifestyle people lead. Wants are cars, designer clothing, electronics, cosmetics and many other things. Although for some the differences in the two categories are obvious, for some, it’s a struggle to see the difference.
Another reason people can’t live within their means is because they don’t see where the harm is done to their financial health with their indulgent spending. These individuals don’t fully understand what their spending does and why they shouldn’t be so quick to spend any money they get into their hands.
For those that don’t understand what their indulgent spending is doing to their financial health, a spending diary should be kept for the month. Whenever a purchase is made, these individuals should write it down and keep the receipts. At the end of the month, they should look at the amounts of money that is spent. Many are surprised at how much discretionary money that’s spent without their paying attention.
Unnecessary Spending Eliminated
Those that take the time to track their spending or look at the amount of money that is spent in a month should also look at the places they spend money. This is something that is often very surprising because they don’t realize how much they spend doing certain things. They are also surprised to find what effects this has on their monthly budget, how their bills are paid and their entire financial health.
Eating Out and On the Go
For working adults, it’s much more convenient to eat at a restaurant for lunch or grab a quick bite to eat from a fast food restaurant. While it’s convenient to eat out or on the go, it’s financially crippling. Especially for those that struggle with paying their bills each month.
Instead of eating out every day, eat out once a month as a treat and pack lunches and snacks for work. This is something that millions of people have learned to do. By packing lunches and snacks, some people have been able to pay off large debts and move into financial health. For those that spend $7 each day eating out or on the go 5 days a week, the savings add up quickly. The $35 spent each week on food equals $1,820 each year. Imagine the savings if more is spent each day.
Evaluate Insurance Options
There are some people that just don’t pay attention to what they can save by looking at the insurances they carry and how much they are paying. Some people stay with a certain insurance provider because that is what their parents had or they are loyal to that company. What they don’t realize is that there are other options available that may allow them to pay much less.
Instead of staying with a company because of brand loyalty, people should call and get new quotes for their car, home, health and renter’s insurances. These calls and internet searches can take some time but many times, it’s worth it. Many people are surprised to find they can save hundreds of dollars per month. If one saved $200 each month, they could save $2,400 each year.
Eliminate Unused Luxuries
It’s very easy to pay for services that sound or look good. It’s also very easy to forget about them and continue to pay for them. That is the biggest waste for most people. There is no need to constantly pay for something that is not used. Millions of families pay for cable and satellite television packages but their home is empty for most of the day. This is a huge waste of money.
Rather than continue paying for services that aren’t being used, stop it or minimize the bill. For working families that have cable or satellite, terminate the services and look for a different way to watch the shows everyone likes. There are streaming options available that make it very easy to change the way people view television.
There are many different ways to save money. Instead of ignoring the obvious financial debt that is growing, people should examine why they are in debt as they are and make serious financial decisions. There are many different ways to save money and eliminating unnecessary spending is one of them.