24 Things You Can Do Today To Improve Your Finances!
Getting your finances on track doesn’t have to be complicated. You can start by taking small steps to improve your money management for the better. Here are 24 little things you can start TODAY to make your financial future brighter!
1 Read a book
Find a book that will teach you something about finances, personal management, or your career. High earners are well read and always seeking self improvement!
2. Identify Spending Triggers
Is there something that makes you want to spend money? Like buying ice cream or prosecco after a tough day at work, or the weekly visit to the bookstore or outdoors-gear shop? Review your spending habits to see if you can identify these types of purchases and plan for them in your budget. Or eliminate them all together.
3. Open High Yield Savings Account
Did you know you can get more than 0.00Nothing% yield on a savings account nowadays? Do some research for yourself and see if you can find a better banking experience!
4. Cancel Unnecessary Expenses
I got insurance to cover my new cell phone in my wireless plan last year, but once I read the paperwork I found that the insurance still required a $400 copay for any damages. Totally not worth the monthly payments. Are you paying for any services that are unnecessary or you could live without?
5. Pantry Challenge
See how much you can eat from your pantry this week to save on groceries. This is also great to make sure there’s no food going to waste expiring in your back cupboards.
6. Listen to a Podcast
Another way to educate yourself! There are so many great ideas and resources out there on podcasts today.
Did you know that people with clutter tend to have debt, too? Declutter your house or closet to free up your lifestyle in general. Also, by going through your clothes you can identify new outfit options and have a better understanding of your wardrobe that can help cut down on buying new clothes. (You might be able to sell some of your clutter, too)
8. Organize Your Tax Records
Why? a) You’ll feel like a personal finance rockstar with your records in order! b) You cut down on the amount of time & stress you spend on this at tax season (or the time you pay someone to do this for you)! And c) It helps you find new write offs!
9. Pay Off Credit Card(s)
Leaving a balance on your credit card(s) month to month can cost you big time! Don’t lose your hard earned money to interest payments. Learn more about paying off debts here.
10. Sell Something
Like I said before in decluttering. There are so many creative ways to sell your stuff: Facebook, Craislist, Ebay, innumerable online specialty shops. Just do a quick Google search to see how you can trade your extra belongings for cash!
11. Make a Budget
Or review it if you already have one. This may seem obvious, but knowing where your money is going and being intentional with how you allocate your spending can help you achieve your financial goals. Sign up here for my free budget sheets and course:
12. Write Down Your Goals
Did you know that you are more likely to achieve your goals if you write them down? Pull out a pen and paper today and put your dreams in ink!
I hate all those investment articles that just tell you to max out your 401K contributions. I’m over here like “Self-employed and/or small biz employee, never had that option!” There are simple ways to start investing that don’t require employer provided benefits. Do your own research and find something that is comfortable for you. Here’s a great place to start.
14. Watch Less Than 1 Hour of TV Per Day
The wealthy spend their free time enriching their lives: educating themselves, working out, spending time with loved ones, R&R; and less time in front of TV. Want to be wealthy, you have to act wealthy; cut down on TV.
15. Read a Blog
More education! Blog posts are a great way to instantly find info on any subject you’re interested in, and also to lead you to similar subjects and free resources. Here are some of my favorites: Making Sense of Cents, Millennial Boss, Frugal Asian Finance, & Can’t Swing a Cat.
16. Collect Loose Change
Look around for your lost pennies! In your house…in your car…in your couch cushions…in your mom’s couch cushions…kidding with that last one, but you get the picture. See if you can find a few bucks lying around and put it to better use than holding down the carpets.
17. Meal Plan
Plan out your menus and cook at home more. You can save on groceries by being smarter with you shopping and eating healthier! Find some new healthy meal inspo on my Pinterest Board!
What do you have that you can reuse or repurpose to save you money? Some ideas: I like to reuse food containers for leftovers and packed lunches. I had a coworker who would collect all the meeting agendas after every meeting and staple them together for a notepad. If you have sewing skills you can repurpose clothing for new-to-you pieces. Get creative and be on the lookout for reusable items!
19. Go Paperless
Can you stretch out your printer paper by submitting projects online or composing on your laptop? How about using cloth towels instead of paper towels for your household?
20. Savings Challenge
Create a personalized savings challenge for yourself. Is there a frequent expense you can cut out or limit for a short time? Like your morning latte or weekend cocktail? Challenge yourself to go without for a while and use that money somewhere else, like paying off debt or investing.
21. Pre-Buy Gifts
This is one of my favorites. I’ll keep an eye out for sweet deals on small gift items and cards when I’m shopping. Picking up little, generic gifts to give throughout the year or as stocking stuffers is a great way to not be pressured into buying something last minute because you’re running out of time. Check the clearance eisles and stock up!
22. Pack a Lunch
Save your lunch money! Meal plan, make a little extra super for leftovers, prep and pack on the weekends…it doesn’t have to be complicated. And it can save you a lot of $$$!
23. Homemade Gifts
Holidays, birthdays, and gifts don’t have to break the bank. Can you make gifts from something you already have or can get cheaply? Baked goods, crafts, body care products… any handiwork you can share with your friends and family.
24. No Spend Challenge
Similar to the savings challenge, the no spend challenge is where you go without any unplanned spending for a period of time. This could be a few days to a few months, depending on how much planning and dedication you want to commit.
You are on your way to better money skills and a wealthier future! What other little ways to you use to improve your finances?