We’re six weeks into the New Year. Have you made it past “Quitter’s Day” and stuck to your resolution of saving money this year? Whether you’ve fallen off the money-saving wagon or are still going strong, we could always use some added inspiration to help achieve our goals, whatever they are.
We met with accredited financial counselor and millennial money expert, Jessica Moorhouse who shared these simple but powerful tips.
Tip #1 Write Your Goals
If you want to realize your financial goals, you first need to know what those goals are. Take a few minutes to think about what you are saving for. A family vacation? Paying off debt? Think about it and then write down your goals with specific timelines you want to achieve them by. Having that target date attached to the goal will help you stay motivated and focused on what you’re working towards.
Tip #2 Make Your Goals Bite-Sized
When you have some big financial goals, the road to reaching them can seem long and even impossible. For instance, if you have a goal to save $5,000 for your Emergency Fund, that can seem like a daunting task. $5,000 is a ton of money! But if you make that goal bite-sized, for instance by putting $100 into your savings account each week, fast forward one year and you will have reached that goal.
Tip #3 Set-up Auto Contributions
A great way to save money with minimal effort is by making things automatic. You can easily set up your banking to make auto contributions to your savings account every single week. This “set it and forget it” model will keep you from skipping contributions so that you’re saving consistently year-round.
Tip #4 Have Two Chequing Accounts
Have not one, but two chequing accounts. Use one as your main account, where money flows in on payday and then out to automatically pay your bills like your mortgage, utilities and credit card. As for your second chequing account, that’s where you’ll deposit a specific amount of money every payday (you can call it an allowance if you want) that you can use to spend on any non-essentials. There’s nothing wrong with treating yourself, just as long as you know your limit and stay within it.
Tip #5 Spend Lean
You don’t necessarily have to make big sacrifices or live super frugally to achieve your savings goals. Instead, think about how you’re spending your money. Is what you’re buying actually adding any value to your life? Start taking a good look at your spending and cut out anything that doesn’t mean something to you. You’ll naturally save more money without it feeling like a big loss.
With these simple tips up your sleeve, you’re ready to get back (or stay) on track and achieve your goal of saving more. Remember to take your goals one step at a time, be consistent, and most importantly — never stop trying.