Wealth strategies – When the going gets tough, the tough reevaluate the situation and make the smart decision. It could be time to cut back on living expenses, but the question is, how? Of course, a cursory glance at day-to-day spending might not reveal any hints on how to increase savings and finding a way to cut back may look a lot like Mission Impossible. Here it’s the need for financial life planning.
The following are some wealth strategies on how others have reduced their living expenses.
Financial Life Planning – Spend Less on Mortgage Payments
Mortgage payments are often regarded as the most inflexible of all living expenses in wealth strategies, but even this commitment can be renegotiated or otherwise reduced. It is possible to refinance an existing mortgage on more favorable terms. If a financial institution is offering an attractive lending rate, explore the possibility of having an existing mortgage refinanced at the lower rate and thus reduce the monthly payment. Another way to effectively reduce mortgage payments each month is to build an income apartment. The tenant’s rent will go towards the mortgage and the difference can be saved.
Financial Life Planning – Spend Less at the Grocery
There are countless ways to save at the supermarket. From buying generic brands to clipping coupons, much has been said about how to cut the food bill. Another way in wealth strategies to spend less at the grocery is to plant a kitchen garden; this can help to save a bundle on vegetables.
Find Budget Entertainment
It is possible to have a great time without spending a heap of cash. Think back to those college days and try to institute some old frugal ways. Back then it may have been done out of necessity, but harkening back to the dorm can reintroduce some savvy saving tips that can be used today. Remember going out just for happy hour, hosting a swinging BYOB party and having only basic cable? Those little changes can save big bucks in the adult world as well.
Financial Life Planning – Reduce the Debt Load
In terms of wealth strategies, getting rid of monthly loan payments can free up cash flow. To be able to channel funds into other more exciting areas make it a priority to pay down debt. Conscientiously contributing extra payments every month will bring up the last installment in no time.
Lower the Utilities Bill
The electricity and water bills can take a huge bite out of monthly paychecks if left unattended. To conserve energy and save on the electricity bill replace bulbs with Compact Fluorescents (CFLs) and turn off lights when they are not in use. To save on water consumption, wash only full loads of clothes and dishes and adjust the toilet tank to use less with each flush. This can be done by filling a bottle with sand and sinking it into the bottom of the tank. The tank will now take less water to fill up each time because of the space displaced by the sand filled bottle.
Reduce Transportation Costs
Even transportation costs can be cut by some simple lifestyle changes. Carpooling and taking public transportation are two measures that can be used to spend less on car care and transportation in general.
According to wealth strategies, cutting back on living expenses takes dedication and effort, but it is possible to save an impressive amount each month just by implementing some small changes.
Organization Tips to Help Save Money at Home
With credit card debt and home loan interest rates rising, many Australian families need to save on home finances and general household costs. Without a household budget in place, it is easy to overspend and create financial chaos.
When organizing personal finances, there are several ways to get out of debt and help keep your bank balance in the black.
Get Organized with Money Management
Library books returned on time don’t attract overdue fees. Bills paid on time don’t attract late payment penalties. Credit cards paid on time don’t incur interest charges. Fees charged because of late payments due to disorganization are an unnecessary expense. Pay on time and save.
Make a Menu Plan
Planning meals in advance means that only necessary groceries are purchased. It is generally cheaper to buy products in bulk, but this only works if all of what is purchased is used. Throwing out the unused remains of a large bottle of cream means a smaller bottle would have been more economical. Having a menu plan will also reduce the need to resort to takeaway, further reducing grocery costs.
Write a Home Budgeting Plan
Collect all receipts for one to two months in a shoe box. Keep track of all purchases including lunchtime coffee or other snacks. Write out a simple list of income and expenses. Include all weekly (groceries, petrol), monthly (health insurance, school fees) quarterly (gas, electricity, water, rates), yearly (insurance, car registration, subscription/membership renewals), occasional (gifts) and personal (haircuts, clothing) expenses. Consider purchasing personal budgeting software to help with household financial planning.
It isn’t always easy to see where day-to-day expenses can be reduced to help get out of debt. Consider limiting the number of times lunch is bought each week, as it is cheaper to make something at home. Reducing alcohol or cigarette intake by even a small amount will add up to significant savings over a year. Increase the amount of time between haircuts. Changing visits from every six to every eight weeks will save the cost of two haircuts a year.
Using less will cost less. Turn off the TV, microwave, DVD, video and computer at the wall instead of leaving them on standby. Bucket water from the bath into the washing machine or onto the garden. Only run the dishwasher and washing machine with a full load. Dry clothes in the sun instead of running the clothes dryer. Use energy saver lightglobes. There are hundreds of small ways to reduce consumption, and therefore expenses, every day.
Consider Credit Card Debt Consolidation
Get out of debt by taking control of credit cards. If it is too tempting to shop on credit, consider getting rid of the cards altogether. Pay them out by taking out a personal loan, as the interest rates will be lower and the temptation to continue to spend is taken away. Many finance companies offer specific debt consolidation loans with special rates for credit card debts. Debit cards from the bank can work as credit cards for online and telephone purchases, without increasing debt.
For those feeling overwhelmed with the number of bills and struggling to simply put food on the table, organizations such as CAP (Christians Against Poverty), which operates throughout Australia and the UK, can help to organize a budget and payment of debts and ongoing living expenses. Charities such as St Vincent de Paul and the Salvation Army can also help with vouchers and emergency supplies.