How many times a day do you swipe your credit card? It’s not uncommon for most people to do this without thinking twice about the process. From the coffee you pick up on your way to work to lunch and numerous other purchases, you may not recognize just how frequently you are spending money. The problem is, spending so often contributes to problems with saving. From tapping your mobile device to actually making a purchase online, how much are you spending?
Spending Made Easy Makes Saving Difficult
It’s too easy to spend money today. It used to be a bit more complex in that you had to have cash in hand to make most of your purchases. Now, you don’t even need a card with online and mobile shopping. While this makes life easier in terms of getting things done, it makes tracking your spending more challenging. If you are using multiple payment methods, such as numerous accounts and credit cards, the process is even more difficult.
Yet, many people recognize the value and importance of saving. Saving money is hard to do when you are unsure of what you are spending, though. Those little purchases add up to a significant amount of money that could be going towards your savings.
No Spend Days Offer a Solution
The best way to recognize what needs to change is to try to force it. A few no spending days per month can be a big opportunity for you. Pick just two days to start with each month. On those days, make no purchases. Don’t use your card, your apps, or your online accounts to make purchases. It may be hard to do initially, but that’s the point. Here are a few examples of what this makes you do.
Instead of buying that $5 cup of coffee, you need to bring one with you each day. That’s an immediate savings.
Don’t forget to pack a lunch, too. That’s another easy way to save $10 a day.
That purchase on the way home from work will need to wait until the next day. Delaying purchases like this is beneficial. It can help reduce how much you spend, you’ll stop at the store fewer times, and you may decide you can do without those items altogether.
Don’t spend the money on the mobile games you play on these days. It’s a few dollars, but again, it adds up.
You’ll have to plan for dinner in advance. That may offer some nice additional benefits, such as having the entire family at the dinner table at the same time to enjoy time together.
Over the course of a month, do this twice. Then, try to do it one day every week. If you want to realize the true savings potential, add up how much you would have spent each of these days. Could this be money you are putting into a savings account? Did you even miss buying those things?
It’s easy to spend money, but it’s only difficult to save money if you don’t have a plan in place to help minimize at least some of the purchases you make. No spending days are a tool to help you realize what you are spending money on. Can you use this information to help you to budget better or to grow your savings account? Perhaps it can help you boost your investments, too.
We’re Here to Help!
If you have questions on budgeting or would like more personalized advice on different savings options, stop by our branch or give us a call at 800-343-6328.
Each individual’s financial situation is unique and readers are encouraged to contact the Credit Union when seeking financial advice on the products and services discussed. This article is for educational purposes only; the authors assume no legal responsibility for the completeness or accuracy of the contents.