Tired of feeling like you just never have enough money each month? Well you’re not alone! So many families struggle to not only reach their financial goals, but in having enough to cover all of their living expenses each month. Simple steps and habits can really help you to stop struggling and start seeing your money grow each month.
Here are five habits to help grow your money faster without having to cut spending or making too many sacrifices:
5 Habits to Help Grow Your Money
When was the last time you and your spouse sat down and actually discussed money? If it’s been longer than a week then you need to consider having one soon. You should be sitting down at least once a week to talk about upcoming bills, paychecks, savings, and how you’re doing financially. If you’re not sure what to talk about during your money date, consider these ideas:
- Upcoming bills
- Paid bills
- Financial goals
- Bank account balances
Updating Your Budget Regularly
Along with a weekly money date, you should be checking in with your budget every few days. This includes comparing your online bank statement and check register with your budget. Make sure you’re including the correct amount for your monthly bills that change each month, like utilities, phone bills, etc.
By updating your budget on a weekly basis it takes the overwhelmed feeling out of the picture. More than likely the number of charges each week are minimal, which means it won’t take too much time to update your budget.
Set Up Automatic Transfers
If you struggle saving money at the end of each month then try setting savings reminders on payday. You should be saving at least 10% of your income each month, but waiting until the end of the month can be difficult. Try setting automatic transfers on paydays from your checking to your savings. An automatic transfer encourages saving by taking the hardest part of savings out of the picture — remembering to do it.
Go into your online banking and set a recurring transfer from your checking into your savings. Set it for either your payday or the very next day. Set the amount to a specific amount — at least 10% of your income.
Meal Plan At Least Five Times A Week
Meal planning is a great money savings tool. Those nights when you come home late, the kids are starving, and you’re exhausted having a meal plan can be a blessing.
If you’re not familiar with meal planning there are a few tips to help get you started:
- Keep your meals simple. Try to keep the ingredients to items you normally have on hand so it doesn’t complicate the recipes.
- Stick to just a few different meats or main ingredients each week. By finding a few meals that use the same main ingredient then cooking will be a breeze. For instance, cooking spaghetti with meat sauce one night, meatloaf another, and burgers the final night means you could cook all the meat one night and have less prep time the other nights.
- Check sales for your main ingredients. A lot of meal plans can be dictated by what’s on sale at your local grocery store.
When you meal plan be sure to include your main dish and side dishes. It will help take the guesswork out of dinner time on those busy nights. On your unplanned nights you can have a leftover night (or two). If you enjoy eating out, keep at least one night open to splurge, but keep it in your budget.
Learn To Say No
This trick works great for so many areas in your life–your schedule, your stress level and even your money. By learning to say no you’ll stop spending mindlessly and make sure that when you do spend money, it’s worth it. Start saying no to eating out invites unless they’re planned ahead of time. Learn to say no to ordering soda or an appetizer when you do go out. You can also save a lot of money by saying no to desserts and too many snacks from the grocery store.