5 Budgeting Hacks That Can Help You Save Money

woman counting money and trying the budgeting hacks
Photo by Karolina Grabowska from Pexels

It is not a secret that budgeting is one of the hardest parts of adult life. Many of us end with nothing in our wallets and bank accounts even before the next paycheck. I’ve been there, and I experienced firsthand how hard the consequences are if you don’t manage your budget carefully. Given these, I’ve learned how important it is to take care of your finances and keep track of all your expenses.

Budgeting is not something you will get used to overnight. It takes work, commitment, and discipline before making it a part of your lifestyle. Fortunately, there are budgeting hacks that can help you be more responsible in handling your finances. Follow these hacks and you’ll be surprised with the result.

Basic Budgeting Hacks

1. Use Cash

One of my dreams as an adult is to go shopping without looking at price tags and not thinking about how much I will spend. Let’s accept it, shopping plays a big part in ruining our budget. These days, it is so easy to buy stuff even when you are in the comfort of your home, or just wherever you are as long as there are internet and credit card in your wallet. In the US alone, it was said that 5.85% of the population has compulsive buying disorder, 80% of it is women.   It’s so easy to go on a shopping spree when you use your credit card instead of paying in cash, but, for an unknown reason, paying in cash is more painful than paying with credit cards (Ariely and Kreisler, 2017) 

Leave your credit cards at home instead of bringing it when you go shopping. Forget that you have one and just use it during emergencies. Use cash, from buying clothes to doing grocery shopping. Once you used all your money, it’s gone. In that way, you will be conscious of how much cash left and won’t go overboard with your expenses.

2. Save first

Before, what I used to do is spend first and save what is left of my salary at the end of the month. Surprisingly, it didn’t work. Almost all the time I am left with nothing, and in some instances, I had to borrow from friends or family just to survive. It was awful. Now, I have a savings account wherein a chunk of my salary is automatically deducted from my paycheck and is deposited in that account.

You can do the same thing. The good thing about an automatic saving plan is you don’t have easy access to your money, in short, you can’t spend it.

3. Cut down monthly Subscription

Your monthly subscription may not cost that much, but it will still hurt your finances. Gym membership, magazine, Netflix, amazon prime, before you know it it will cost you over a $100 monthly. Cut down whatever stuff you don’t exactly need and use. The money that goes to any of your subscriptions can be added to your savings or your grocery money.

4. Pay your debts

You can never be financially stable if you won’t take responsibility for your debts. True, it is so tempting to just forget about it and enjoy what you have right now, but you will never experience financial freedom. I know someone who took his debt for granted, in the end, he was forced to pay way more than the capital amount.

A tip from Finance superhero, list down all your debts “including total principal, interest rates, minimum payments, and loan terms or each debt.” That way, it will be easier for you to track the remaining balance and the longevity of your debts. 

5. Save on Food

Aside from shopping, buying foods can also be a budget breaker. Eating out is great, no need to cook and buy ingredients, and it can save you time and effort. However, it will not save you money. The price of your lunch can last for maybe 2-3 meals if you cook your own food.

To budget your food, create a meal plan for the whole week. With the list of ingredients ready, grocery shopping will not be a problem anymore. Plus, you can adjust your budget depending on the number of foods you will consume for the week and use it to buy other necessary items or home.