For some of us, it is extremely hard to save money. It seems like each dollar we make is already accounted for before our paycheck is in the bank. Saving money feels impossible. Here is a list of some things I currently do now and have done in the past, to help you figure out which savings idea can work for you!
- Money in a jar – This plan does NOT work for me. It might as well be in my purse. If I see it, I can spend it. If I need something, I will take the money from the jar. If my kids want something and I say I have no money, they say “Take it from the jar!” If I hide the jar, I still know I have the jar and take the money out anyway. If you have a ton of discipline, then good for you, do it!
- Money in a jar EXTREME – Ok, so a few years ago, I got this idea that if I couldn’t actually SEE the money it would help me to save. This worked MUCH better than money in a jar but it’s essentially the same thing. What you need to do is have a jar with a money slot cut out on the top. Now cover the whole thing in a TON of duct tape. So much duct tape. Use the whole roll. DO NOT COVER THE MONEY SLOT. Now, when you put money in you can’t see it. Out of sight, out of mind…… Right???? Well, it worked for me for quite awhile until I needed to buy something pretty pricey and of course I had NO IDEA how much was in the jar. It was EXTREMELY hard to open. Once I got it open, I didn’t even have enough money. Grrrrr…. You might want to modify this idea. Maybe keep track of what’s in it?? If you need a certain amount by a certain date, just figure out how much to put in every day or every week.
- Open a savings or checking account at a bank – Some banks even have a bonus of $100 or more if you open up a checking and sign up for direct deposit. TD Bank, Santander, People’s and Liberty are just a few that usually offer a new customer bonus. Savings accounts don’t really make you anything in interest unless you have a ton of money in your account. So really the benefit to the account would be that it’s harder to get to when its in the bank. Let me recommend if you go this route, DO NOT get an ATM card. While it could potentially make making deposits easier because you could use the ATM after hours, You might be tempted to use it to withdraw. If you don’t have any discipline, just say no to the card. P.S. Kids get better interest rates on savings accounts at the bank. If you have children, consider putting the account in their name.
- Buy stock – You could go into the bank and talk to someone about investing your money. Ask if you could speak to someone about whatever options your bank offers. If you need to start smaller, you could try an investment app. Apps Like ACORNS give you $5.00 for FREE when you sign up and make your first investment. You can invest as little as $5.00 and sign up to have automatic withdraws. You can even agree to “round up” the change on your ATM card purchases and have the “change” invested also. I like this method of saving because your funds are not immediately available to you. If you need to withdraw your funds, there is a 5-7 day delay because they need to sell your stock first. You can also earn FREE money by shopping at their sponsored sites. They call it Found Money. Earn bonus $$ by shopping at Old navy, Groupon, Boxed, Jet and MORE!!! You can check on the app to see how your investment is doing, and you decide how aggressive you would like to be. I chose a moderate investment and I try not to look at it. I started with only $5.00 per month and just recently increased the amount. For me, this has been a great way to save. Especially because I can ignore it and forget I’m saving.
- Purchase coins – Buying silver and/or gold is also investing. Sometimes it goes up, sometimes it goes down, but it mostly goes up. Silver is my favorite to collect because I still find it today in circulation. READ ABOUT SILVER HERE. Dimes and quarters 1964 and older are mostly silver and more valuable than 1965 to now. Some are rare so look up dates if you find any to see if it’s worth more than it’s weight in silver. Good places to look for old silver coins are tag sales and flea markets. When I was a cashier, I would find SO MANY silver coins. Sometimes people bought things with coins from collections. I was also lucky to have a cool boss and a job where I could “buy” the coins I wanted at the end of my shift. Gold isn’t very common to come buy in circulation. The only “gold” coins I ever came across were those state quarters that are “gold plated” and worth basically nothing. INFO ON GOLD PRICES HERE. If you could save a little and buy gold with your money, that would be a GREAT investment. Buy the coins and stash away. You are making interest just by having them. If you have a lot, consider getting a safety deposit box.
- Purchase antiques – This can be a great idea if you are very knowledgeable about antiques and the prices are trending up. Quite often antiques lose their value because once they were thought to be rare and now it isn’t. Or the item became less desirable for purchase, which drives the price down. If you can find something that will hold it’s value or increase over time, that will be a great investment! It’s an even better deal if you can find the item at a thrift store or tag sale. Check the value every once in awhile , if you see it trending down you might want to sell.
- Make a spending log – For a week, write down everything you spent money on to figure out where you are wasting money. $2 on a coffee every morning doesn’t seem like a lot until you add it up. If you get one every day before work M-F that’s $10 per week and $40 per month. Consider making your own coffee in the morning. You can get a coffee maker for $12 HERE on Amazon and buy disposable coffee cups at the Dollar Tree HERE or get a reusable mug. Even if you just did this one small change, you could save at least $30 per month which is $360 PER YEAR!!