There are tons of ways you can save money. You can skip the coffee shop in the morning and start buying off brands instead of the name brand stuff, but if you’re just looking for ways to trim your budget, you’re missing the bigger picture.
How you manage your money is just as, if not more, important than when you spend your money on. Not to mention, once you’ve got your money management down, you don’t have to think about it anymore!
Here are five money management tips that will help you spend less so you can use that money to bulk up your savings account instead.
Be Smart About How You Send Money to Others
How you give money to other people matters. If you aren’t smart about it, you could end up paying a lot more in fees than you should.
For example, if you want to send money to friends and family in Guatemala, you have many money transfer services to choose from. You need to choose one, like Remitly, that offers low transfer fees and the best exchange rate.
You also have to think about how you pay bills. You may be charged a fee for paying your bill over the phone or online. You can save on those fees by setting up recurring payments or by sending a check in the mail.
Choose Your Bank Account Wisely
The biggest way you can manage your money is to use a bank account. If you don’t have one, you should get one. They offer a variety of money services that are free, like coin returns and deposits.
However, that doesn’t mean you should just go with the first bank you find. You should research all your options in the area. Some banks will charge monthly checking account fees that others won’t. If you’re in the market for a car or home loan, make sure you have all your accounts with the same bank to take advantage of even more discounts.
Set up an Automatic Monthly Transfer to Your Savings Account
We all talk about saving money, and yet, so few of us actually follow through. For most of us, if there’s money in our bank account, we’re going to spend it.
Keep that from happening by creating an automatic savings plan. All you have to do is determine how much money you want automatically transferred from your checking account to your savings account. Schedule the transfer every time you deposit a check into your account and you never have to worry about making sure you’re saving again.
Lower the Interest Rates on Your Credit Cards
Credit cards are a necessary evil. They can help you build your credit score and they can get you out of a tight spot in an emergency, but they can also wreak havoc on your financial life. One way they do that is by charging outrageous interest rates.
You can save a lot of money if you reduce the interest rates on your credit cards. If you’ve been making timely payments, you have the right to call your credit card company and negotiate lower rates.
If you aren’t able to lower your rates to your satisfaction, you should consider transferring your balance to another credit card. However, only make the transfer if you’re serious about paying down your balance. Some credit cards waive all fees for the first year, which provides the perfect opportunity to pay off that balance.
Get Control of Your Subscriptions
Subscriptions can really take over your life, and before you know it, tens or even hundreds of dollars are being automatically withdrawn from your bank account each month. If you want to save money and take control of your spending, you have to trim down those subscriptions!
A few subscriptions to consider getting rid of include:
- TV services, like Hulu and HBO Go
- Music streaming services
- Gym memberships
It all depends on what you use, and what you don’t. Some services like Trim and TrueBill will help you determine which subscriptions you actually use and which ones you don’t, and they can cancel unused subscriptions on your behalf.
By all means, curb your impulsive spending habits and stop driving through the fast food joint on your way home, but if you really want to save money, you have to think about how you manage your money. With these five tips, you’ll be on your way to bulking up your savings account in no time.