If you’re having a hard time figuring out how to cut costs in order to save more money, here are a few tricks to help you make it happen!
5 ways to trick yourself into saving more money
1. Automate your savings
If you haven’t heard the phrase ‘pay yourself first,’ it will change your life. Think about your spending habits. When your paycheck shows up in your bank account, do you ever spend any of that money on things you don’t absolutely need (or really don’t need at all)? Do you ever reach the end of the month, with the intention of saving, and then wonder where all your money went?
Automating your savings is the best way to save more money, because it prevents you from spending any extra cash you don’t need to pay the bills. Figure out what you need to cover your necessary monthly expenses (housing, food, bills etc.) and then have the rest automatically set aside in savings. All you have to do is set up your paycheck so that a portion is deposited directly into a savings account — or other method of savings — and that way you won’t even get a chance to spend it.
Read more: How frugal folks can save even more
Depending on how much money you can spare each month, you should set aside a portion of each paycheck for both emergency savings and long-term savings. Here’s more on how to get started.
2. When you pay off a debt, keep making the payment — to yourself!
The obligation of paying off a debt each month — like a car loan or credit cards — isn’t very fun. But there’s a way to turn that monthly habit into one that benefits your future.
Getting a debt paid off can free up a lot of extra cash, depending on how much you were paying each month, and that cash can be turned into savings. So once you get a debt paid off, instead of spending the extra money, keep making the monthly payment — but from now on, make it to yourself. Take the money you were previously putting toward debt and have it automatically taken out of your paycheck and deposited into savings.
3. Tax refunds, bonuses and raises
If the money is in your account, you will probably spend it — or at least some of it. If you really want to save more money, take any extra cash that comes your way — in the form of gifts, bonuses, tax refunds or even extra money from a pay raise at work — and put it directly into savings. If you get a raise at work, live on the same amount you were already getting by on and put the extra cash away for the future. You’ll be glad you did when it comes time for a big purchase or when you start to see that money really grow in a retirement account.
4. Save spare change
It may not make you rich, but every little bit counts. Take any spare change you have in your pockets, purse or wallet at the end of each day and put it into a savings jar. And don’t touch it! Then at the end of the month, take the money to the bank and deposit it into savings!
Read more: Why saving is more than just cutting back