You work for 30 (sometimes 31) days a month to get that pay-check, only to find yourself stuck mid-month because you’re running low on money. It’s a widespread situation we all had dealt with at some point or are currently dealing with. How do we attempt to prevent that from happening? Well, here are five ways you get to maintain that money you worked so hard to earn!
1. Check your calendar and start your month with a budget.
Know where you’ll be going, what will you be doing, and with who (it does make a difference because we know some of our friends like to go a little extra). And since we all love an occasional breather, keep a certain amount aside for last-minute outings and emergencies. This way, even when the outing is unplanned, you don’t go overboard and overwhelm your budget.
2. Do everything a week ahead.
And by that, we mean fill up your gas tank, get your groceries, plan your meals a week ahead. It may sound a bit insignificant, but you’d be surprised how much money we spend on gas because we fill it multiple times during the week instead of filling it once at the start of the week. The same thing goes for groceries when you buy for the whole month, more often than not, you’ll get things that you don’t really need. Yes, we’re talking about that spicy mayo that has been sitting untouched in your fridge for three months.
3. Have two separate bank accounts.
One for your savings, and one for your spending. Never touch your savings account (unless you’re depositing anything, otherwise forget it even exists). This would help you in keeping track of your money and save some more at the same time. Try to let this (card-based) be your means or tool of paying, instead of paying in cash. This way, you can actually do one more thing that will make you spend less: Always, always, always carry the minimum amount of cash with you. Since your means of paying would already be by card, you don’t really have to carry around cash unless absolutely necessary as in places where it’s the only accepted payment method (like some gas stations or cold stores).
4. Shop during sales time.
Why buy a shirt for 25 BD when two weeks later it’ll be on sale for perhaps more than half of its price? Subscribe to newsletters or SMS services that alert you of when sales do occur. Certain shops are quite famous for their nonstop sales (cough *Bath and Body Works* cough), so it definitely makes more sense to buy what you want when it’s offered for a lesser price. Who wouldn’t want that?
– Pro tip: Use those times of the year (sales) to also stack up on birthday gifts!
5. Look for cheaper alternatives.
Be it in terms of the coffee shop you always go to, or that restaurant you’ve been getting yourself some office lunch from, to practically everything. This is not to deprive you of anything and keep you living a joyless life; it’s quite the contrary; you get to break out of your comfort zone and try out new places and save some extra change for your next rendezvous! If you find this tip to be too inconvenient (it’s okay, we know your favourite coffee shop is quieter with fewer people hanging out), then go back to tip #1 and include it from the start of the month in your budget.