If you’ve struggled with money for years, putting together a money saving plan might sound impossible. But it’s just what you need to build a savings cushion! And it’s easy to get started. Here are the steps you’ll want to take today.
Ever get a windfall of money you weren’t expecting?
I mean, it doesn’t happen often enough, right?
But when it does, there’s always that moment when your brain feels a little torn about what to do with it.
It would be easy to waste it all in a hurry. You have a list a mile long of things you’ve always wanted to own and big projects you’ve been wanting to pull off for ages.
But is that the best way to use that wad of cash?
See, this is why having a money saving plan in place is such a great idea. It’s takes all the extra brain work out of the equation.
(Because sometimes extra brain work leads to a little too much thinking. Which leads to decision fatigue. Which leads to you wondering what happened to all that cash.)
How to Create Your Money Saving Plan
First, let’s answer a couple of questions that might be baffling you.
How Do You Stop Spending Money?
If your checking account is filled on Friday only to be empty again by Monday, you probably need some better tips for saving money.
If you don’t have a budget for every month, it’s a must.
But if you hate the idea of creating a budget, a free Personal Capital account might be right for you.
Assuming you usually use your debit card, this is the easiest way to track your spending and show you at a glance where your money is going.
Once you know your spending weaknesses, you can do something about them.
When we noticed our money was hemorrhaging with nothing to show for it, we took drastic measures.
We went through a #yearofno where we stopped spending money on anything that wasn’t absolutely necessary. And that led to us paying off over $20,000 in debt.
(On one income.) (While raising 5 kids.)
If we can do it, anyone can.
How Can I Save Money Every Week?
Ideally you would start saving money every single week.
Remember how Dad always told you to pay yourself first?
Ideally you’ve already started saving money in a 401(k) at work.
On top of that, you definitely want to start building an emergency fund.
If you’re starting out with nothing, be sure to save up at least $1,000. That will save you from a certain amount of emergencies.
This money saving chart is a really fun way to start that emergency fund. (And any windfall checks you get will only get you there faster!)
Just know that in the end, your real goal for an emergency account is to save up 3 months worth of expenses. Check over your monthly bills to do that math.
Once you have an emergency fund in place or (for multi-taskers) you at least have it started and have a plan to save the rest, it’s time to move on to your sinking funds.
Basically, sinking funds are a cushion of money that stands between you and trouble.
When you get a bill in the mail you’d forgotten about? Sinking funds.
Christmas around the corner? Sinking funds.
So those plans create a cushion between you and, oh, let’s say the entire world coming to a complete stop with no warning.
(Who would have anticipated that??)
Once you have that money in place, you can breath a nice sigh of relief. And move on to something more fun.
What have you always dreamed of doing?
Use the next round of money to fund your dreams.
- Save a down payment on a house
- Start a vacation fund
- Save up for a renovation or addition on your current home
- Whatever lives in your dreams!
How Do I Save Money Fast?
If you need money yesterday, one way to save money fast is to drop your spending down to nearly nothing. Continue paying for housing, utilities, food, and any monthly bills you have to cover.
- Grab these cheapest foods you can buy at the store to keep yourself fed.
- If you can bike or walk instead of driving a car, do it.
- Invite friends to your house to watch a DVD instead of going out.
- Spend your free time selling things you no longer need.
If you already do these things on a regular basis and still have no money to show for it, you probably don’t have a spending problem.
You need more income!
Luckily, there are tons of ways to earn money. Here’s a whole list of full time work from home jobs.
With a money saving plan firmly in place, you’ll get where you want to be.
Don’t let that next windfall slip away from you.
What does your money saving plan look like?