New year, so that means it is time to work on a new you! Or at least to better yourself. One way to do so is to save money.
Saving money can be one of the hardest things to do. When I think of how much money I spent last year I almost want to vomit. However, this is a new year. So try to save, it can be so rewarding! There are so many things that can be done to save money this year and here are my top 11.
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1. Take your lunch
Eating out throughout the work week can be killer on your wallet. You may think that it does not cost much, but those meals can begin to add up quickly! So instead of always going out for lunch, brown bag it. Pack a meal at home and take it to work.
Now I know what some of you may be thinking. “But my coworkers always want to go out, and I don’t want to be left out.” Don’t! Make bringing your lunch to work fun! Kick it elementary style and all sit around with your brown bags. Or you could even have potluck days and eat the leftovers for the rest of the week. You can find a way around going out for lunch.
2. Meal prep for the week
If you lack the enthusiasm to pack a lunch every morning, meal prep. This is something that many people have been getting into. Prep your meals at the beginning of the week and just grab and go. This way you can control what you’re eating, and it is no hassle at all. Meal prepping is not only a great way to save money but also to get healthy. You can start with the lunches and build your way up to every meal of the day.
3. Stay in some weekends
I can definitely attest to the fact that as a millennial, I want to go out every night. It’s nice to go out with friends and socialize over a few drinks. But going out puts a dent in my budget. Instead of always going out, try to find some things to do at home. Watch a movie, catch up on some tv shows, etc. Now I’m not saying you need to isolate yourself from your friends. Have them come over and do these things with you! Y’all could take turns hosting at each other’s houses. Have a game night or movie marathon! Whatever y’all are into. I wrote about how to throw the best social gathering here.
4. Look for Deals
For the nights you do go out, plan ahead. Versus choosing a place spontaneously, that may end up costing you a fortune, look at LivingSocial for things to do around you. You can see the greatest deals on restaurants, events, activities and even trips you could take! Why not look ahead of time for ways to have an awesome time and save money!
5. Drink more water
You have probably never realized how much of your money goes to drinks. Orange juice with breakfast, soda with lunch, lemonade with dinner and boom you have spent at least $10. Yeah seems crazy right?!? But it's real. You would save so much more money if you chose to only drink water with your meals. Now I know, water can be pretty boring, but it does so many great things for you. Water can only make you feel better.
6. Split meals at a restaurant
For those special occasions when you do go out to eat, split a meal. Many restaurants now have the options of “pick 2 for $20” or “select 3 items for $20.” Try to hop on those meals. While these meals seem to be meant for couples, I don’t care. It is saving you money! I will be in a fake relationship with anybody so that I save money on food. Yeah, I said it.
7. Sell some things
If you are like me, you are surrounded by many things that you don’t even use or need. Well, let’s sell it! It is so satisfying to me to get rid of something I don’t need and get money for it. It’s like I found a great home for one of my neglected items and to top it all off, I get paid for it! What could be better than that?
8. Turn off lights
Turning off lights has been drilled into me since I was a kid. “You don’t pay the bills around here! You better turn that light off!” Well, now I do pay my bills, so I make sure to turn off lights that are not being used. I have even made a habit of doing this at friends’ houses which has created a chain effect. So just turn off your lights! Your electric bill will thank you.
9. Create lists when shopping
Make a list before you go to the store because you may go a little crazy and buy more than you needed to. Now some of you may already make lists but have a problem adding to it. STICK TO THE LIST! It may even help if you put the general cost next to each item, so you know how much you are spending going into it. That may cause you to change your mind on adding anything because you don’t want that total to go up.
10. Garage Sale/Flea markets
Garage sales and flea markets are your friends. These places are created for you to find awesome things at a super low price. You can find some amazing things when you go digging. Some may be perfect the second you get them and others may need a little TLC. But the work you put into spicing it up makes it even more yours.
11. Find your closest library
For those that love to read, the library will be your best friend. Instead of always buying books you should try renting them for free from the library. There have been so many books that I have bought and ended up not liking. If I had just rented them first for free, I would have found that out instead of paying for it.
I hope these tips can help you to save money this year!
Do you have another way that you save money? Share it with us below in the comments!