Tips to Save Money

Monday, September 10, 2012

In a time when financial hardship is becoming increasingly common among Canadians, people are often looking for the next great way to save money. Unfortunately, we often forget the easy ways to save money that have been around for decades. What are the ways you ask?

  • Make a plan. Budgeting is a dying art in our society; often, just reasoning with yourself and your partner about what you actually need and how much you actually have to spend can influence you to make more rational and responsible choices.  This is especially important when going grocery shopping. They don’t send out thousands of flyers for us to use as fire starters; start reading them. Plan your shopping trip around what you need and what is on sale in a given week. Be on the look out for promotions like BOGO (buy one get one) and Dollar Days and take advantage of them.  Almost ever major financial institution offers a budgeting tool on their websites, which are a great tool to use because they outline expenses that we may forget about in our own budget making.

  • Be mindful of the amount of power you use. One great trick that not many people think of is to turn your power bars off when you leave your house. Power bars require a lot of power and will run your bill up, quickly. If you have the means to take on green initiatives with your home, a large one-time cost can save you money for years.

  • With the price of gas constantly on the rise, leave the car at home on occasion and bike, walk or take public transportation to your destination. The first two options are an easy way to improve your physical health, while all three lessen our environmental footprint.

  • Lastly and most importantly, don’t let your eyes be bigger than your bank account. Live a lifestyle that is within your means, because as we all know debt is paralyzing. Online shopping has made it easy to find expensive items at discounted prices. Sure you may have to settle on designer shoes that someone else tried on, but if your income does not allow for your expensive taste, compromises must be made.

We live in a society where there is a card for everything and we often forget about the damaging effects that these cards can have if we aren’t responsible for the money that we are spending. Sticking to a planned budget, being mindful of how much power you are using, choosing alternative transportation, and living a lifestyle that is within your means are simple and easy steps to relieve financial troubles in the future.