10 TIPS TO HELP YOU STOP OVERSPENDING
Are you a spender? Are you not sure how you are overspending or just want to spend less? Check out these tips to help you to stop overspending!
1. Have a Goal
You want to stop overspending but why? Having a goal is key in staying motivated to not spend.
What is your WHY? Do you want to pay off debt? Do you need an emergency fund? How about a vacation?
Set some goals and keep referring to them when you’re wondering whether you should buy something or not. Having a goal will help you stay focused.
2. Use Cash
Leave your ATM and credit cards at home and use cash. If you’re in a relationship, let the person who’s most budget-conscious carry the cash if you tend to spend cash easily.
Consider using the cash envelope method to track your spending and stay on budget. It’s a system that has helped millions of people budget and spend less.
You can check out How to Use the Cash Envelope System for more information.
TIP: Hate the idea of using cash? Consider the cashless envelope system instead.
Resist buying anything the first time you see it. This will give you time to consider whether you really need it.
If you’re not willing to go back to the store for an item then you probably don’t really need it.
If you tend to shop online a lot then use a browser extension like Icebox for Chrome. It replaces the buy button on the most popular e-commerce stores, automatically saving you from your weakest moments.
We all love a good sale but if you think about it, things are on sale ALL THE TIME.
4. Make a Shopping List and Stick to it
A list is actually quite useful and can save you from buying things you don’t need.
If you stick to your list you will not only save money but also time because you won’t have to run back out to get what you forget.
The less time spent inside a store the less money spent. The saying out of sight out of mind is very true and works with shopping too.
Have you ever been in a store and thought “omg I wanted this” or ” I need one of these”? Well next time that happens stop and think, have you thought about that item in the last 6 months?
Did you really need it or just because you saw it you all of a sudden needed it?
5. Don’t Shop Hungry
Ever go food shopping when you’re hungry? Eat before you go to the grocery store or any store for that matter.
When you’re hungry you’ll want everything and often buy more than you need because you feel hungry.
Plus you may end up buying premade food which is more expensive. Even if you’re at the mall you may end up grabbing a snack or drink when walking around so be prepared before you go.
6. Buy Used Items
Shopping thrift can save you a ton of money! Plus now with resources like Facebook Marketplace and OfferUp you can easily find things you need without leaving your home to search.
I’ve found appliances, furniture and home decor for pennies on the dollar on these types of marketplaces. People will list free items as well up for grabs. Keep in mind these items do go fast so when you see something you like, act fast.
You may also want to consider borrowing or renting instead of buying. If you’re only going to use something once or twice then consider whether or not you really need to purchase it.
Tools are a great example of something that can be rented or borrowed for one-off projects.
7. Buy in Bulk
Buying in bulk doesn’t always save you money but if you do it strategically it can.
I don’t mean to just run out to your nearest warehouse store and buy huge packages of toilet paper but actually to stock up on items when they are on sale.
If you do shop at wholesale clubs just be sure to do the price comparison. Just because you can get a 48 pack of something doesn’t mean its cheaper than buying say four 12 packs of that item.
This is especially true if you use coupons and can use a coupon on each item.
The main way buying in bulk will save you money is that you won’t be running to the store as often. The fewer trips to the store will mean fewer impulse buys.
8. Do Free and Cheap Activities
Team up with other families for children’s activities. Take the kids to public parks. Watch for free community events.
Take advantage of free zoo and museum days in your area.
Have a girls night in instead of out. Plan a potluck. There are so many things you can do to save money on entertainment.
9. Plan Ahead
If you plan you’re spending ahead of time you won’t have to worry about affording things like gifts or back to school clothes etc.
Setup funds for things you know you will need throughout the year and plan for them in your budget.
For example, you can buy gifts throughout the year when you find the items you like on sale and save them for gift-giving occasions.
TIP: Check out How to Save on Gifts All Year Long for tips and a free gift planner!
10. Track Your Spending
Tracking spending helps you to figure out the areas that you’re overspending in. There can be things you’re spending money on that are really not important.
For example, are you grabbing a snack every afternoon from the cafeteria at work? If you’re tracking your spending you will actually see what you’re spending each week.
In this example, you can either cut the snacks completely out of your budget or grab a box of snacks at the grocery store and keep it in your drawer at work to save you a ton of money over time.
Questions? Comments? Why are your struggles with overspending? Leave a comment below!
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