It’s no surprise that many people are starting 2022 with hopes to improve their financial situation. After a tough two years, many are starting to look to the future. If you’re on a mission to save or earn more this year, here are some simple steps you can take.
Budgeting is one of the easiest and most effective ways to save money, regulate spending and reduce the risk of getting into debt. If you don’t already use a budget to plan how you spend your money, now is the time to start. Budgeting is very straightforward, it doesn’t take a lot of time or effort, and it can help you achieve instant results. You can use apps, spreadsheets or a pen and paper to take stock of your finances and set spending limits for the month ahead. Create three columns and enter figures for your income, your regular outgoings and one-off expenses for the relevant period. Calculate how much disposable income you have once you have covered all your expenses. You can then choose to save some of your money, pay off debts, invest or treat yourself.
Many of us lose track of spending and checking balances and opening statements can provide unexpected surprises. When you can tap to pay and you have a series of direct debit payments coming out of your account, it can be difficult to keep up. Audit your statements, track transactions and use mobile banking apps to keep abreast of your financial situation. You can now check your accounts at the touch of a button and see how much money you have available in real-time.
Checking your statements regularly can help you keep up to date with transactions, but it can also highlight areas where you could potentially make savings and cutbacks. You may have forgotten about memberships or subscriptions, for example, or you might be shocked at how much you’re spending on groceries or going out each month. Cancel memberships you don’t want or need anymore and use your budget to review spending and set new limits.
Consider additional income streams
Many of us would love to earn more, but how do you go about doing this when you already work full-time? If you have a job, there are options to explore, including setting up a side-hustle, selling online, or using your talents and skills to offer services on a freelance basis. If you are thinking about setting up an online store, for example, it’s important to think about how you’re going to finance the venture, research design and hosting options and look into the mechanics of accepting orders and payments through merchant boarding API. You’ll also need to consider how you’re going to promote the site and reach out to your target audience. You could also explore possibilities such as filling in surveys, taking part in research projects or starting a blog.
Earning more can often be difficult if you work and you don’t have a lot of free time, but there are often ways to maximize disposable income or boost your savings through reducing expenses. Take a close look at where your money goes and try to lower your monthly outgoings. There are multiple ways to do this from writing a list for the grocery store and batch cooking to shopping around for the best deals on home, medical and auto insurance and comparing prices on utilities.
Internet comparison sites are a brilliant resource for finding offers and they can help you save on everything from insurance and broadband to your cell contract and the price you pay for energy. If you are looking for an auto insurance policy, for example, enter the details of the vehicle online and click to compare premiums from different providers. You can filter the results based on the level of cover you want and the features of the policy. You can also use search engines to locate the best sites and stores to buy household items. If you have kids, for example, and you want to bulk buy diapers, or you have pets and you’re looking for food, you can compare prices from different retailers to save money.
Many people have experienced financial struggles in the past couple of years. If you are starting the year with aspirations to save more or boost your earnings, there are steps you can take to improve your financial situation. Start budgeting, audit your statements to highlight areas where you can cut back, consider new income streams and try to reduce your monthly expenses.