Whether you have “drained” your savings or are looking to “brew” it back up, here are some tips to mull over as you sip your free coffee on National Coffee Day:
Pay Yourself FirstOne of the biggest secrets to savings is building a habit to pay yourself first. Before paying bills and other expenses, determine what you can save without strapping your wallet and make a goal to deposit to savings each month. The important thing here is the commitment to making that deposit each month to move towards a stronger financial future. As Warren Buffett puts it: "Do not save what is left after spending, but spend what is left after saving."
Make it AutomaticUse your online banking options to set up automatic transfers from your checking to your savings account for pre-determined amounts. Set them up on a schedule that mirrors when you receive or deposit your pay into your checking account. This way, the money transfers before you’ve had a chance to make any impulse purchases.
Put the Extra in SavingsWhen you receive new or unexpected income – such as a rebate check, bonus check, birthday money, raise, or tax refund check – set aside a percentage (or even all of it) first before spending. Likewise, when you eliminate an expense (i.e. pay off your car loan), go ahead and increase the amount you automatically put into savings as part of your Pay Yourself First plan. This will not only give your savings a monthly boost, it will also keep you from adjusting to the increase in disposable income.
Separate Your SavingsIf you find it’s too easy to tap into savings with all of the electronic convenience of ATMs and online banking, consider opening a second savings account or a club account and forgo attaching an ATM card or online banking service. You can use this savings for a specific savings goal (such as a future down payment or dream vacation) or as a way to control the impulse to withdraw from savings since there won’t be easy access to the account.
Determine Your Spending Limits and Stick to Them
Make a list before shopping. Making a list and making the commitment to stick to it can help curb impulse spending, leaving more available to save. Also consider budgeting a limit for extraneous shopping: before going shoe shopping or book browsing, set a limit you are comfortable spending and then stick to it. If you find something you really want outside your pre-set amount, make the decision to wait. Waiting can help give perspective on whether it’s worth busting the budget to buy.
Shop for Discounts and Deals.
Here are four places you can get free and bogo deals on coffee on Friday, September 29, 2017:
Get a free 12-oz coffee, no purchase necessary. Good at all locations, all day.
Go bogo at Dunkin’: Get a free medium hot coffee when you purchase a medium or large hot coffee.
Get a free hot-brewed blend in any size, or get a small Krispy Kreme premium iced coffee in any flavor.
Get a free medium McCafe beverage when you download the McDonald’s app. (Or if you already have it.)
Speaking of coffee, join us on October 14 for coffee and continental breakfast as we talk about building smart budgets, or on October 21 for building credit confidence.