Now with the holidays behind us, it’s time to start thinking about the rest of the year. January is always a great time to review your financial situation. Chances are you over spent on Christmas gifts, and are now looking for some money saving hacks to get you back on track. Continue reading for my top 10 easy, but effective, ways to save some money in 2018.
Money Saving Hacks
1. Review your Contracts
Make money back you probably haven’t thought about for months by looking at your phone, gas, electricity and internet contracts, and seeing where you could get a cheaper deal. If you’re paying for 4GB of data but only use 3GB, switch, and so on and so forth until you suddenly have far more money in your bank account and less unused resources on your statements.
2. Cancel Unused Memberships
January might stereo-typically be a time for joining the gym, but use the New Year as an excuse to look over your existing memberships and see what you could probably do without. If you haven’t used last year’s gym membership since January 5, 2017, think about counting your loses. Subscription boxes, lessons you’ve booked in bulk or delivery services you don’t use anymore. Even if it means paying more expensive non-members prices when you do want to use them, it’ll probably still be less than a membership fee.
3. Limit Use of Debit Cards
We would all consider the purchases we’re making more if they were made with physical cash rather than a debit card. Set a budget at the beginning of the week and remove the amount of cash set aside for personal spending. Rather than just swiping your card at checkout and being oblivious to the money going out of your account, using cash will help you stop and contemplate the purchase at hand.
4. Be Sale Savvy
Although we’re talking about saving, think about the necessities you actually need in life and see if you can grab them on the cheap during the January sales. Yes we’re talking about a new toaster, and no, not those new boots you spotted last weekend.
5. Review Shopping Habits
You might be a dedicated online shopper or addicted to Ugg’s, but it’s worth reviewing your shopping habits and seeing if you could get the same stuff somewhere else. Whether that’s food, clothes or general shopping, have a look at what you spend and where, and see if there’s easy saving to be done. If you do ANY online shopping at Amazon and do not have a Prime Membership, you are spending more overall than you would be otherwise.
6. Meal Prep
It’s so easy to get into the habit of buying food on the go, especially when you’re hungry. Which is why eating a big breakfast at home that keeps you full until lunchtime and prepping your lunch is so important. Plus, you’re likely to have healthier lunches if you take away any tempting options.
7. Return Unwanted Gifts
Once Christmas is over, so too is the awkward “pretending you like a gift” thing! Whether it’s a pair of socks, a book you already own, or a coat that’s two sizes too small, return it. We’re all guilty of saying we’ll “do it tomorrow” and eventually being so lazy we miss the returns period. You’ll regret not having that money when stuck with items you didn’t want in the first place.
8. Or Sell Them Online
If you do miss the return period, you should try and sell any unwanted stuff online through eBay or Craigslist. Yes, it’s a lot of effort and yes it will end up consuming some of your free time. However, not only will it equate to a bit of extra cash in your pocket, but loads more free space in your home too.
9. Re-Gift Things
There shouldn’t be such a taboo about re-gifting things, providing the person you give the item to will actually like it. Also, take into consideration the person you originally received it from and whether or not they will ever find out. The same can be said for gifting things from charity shops, raffle sales or discount stores, if the receiver will like it just as much as if it were new, what’s the problem?
10. Delete Credit Card Details from Online Shopping
Fresh year, fresh start. By doing this and manually having to type your payment details in every single time you want to buy something online, you will consider whether you actually need to buy it. Or whether you’re just doing it because it’s super easy and you’re impulse buying. Get into the habit of leaving things in your basket to consider whether or not you actually need them.
BONUS Money Saving Hacks!
While not one of the typical money saving hacks, this can easily net you some extra money! Driving for Uber is one of the easiest side hustles out there, plus it allows you to meet great new people. Even better, I found THIS LINK online that if you sign up to drive through, Uber guarantees you will make at least $150 on your first 20 trips!