You’ve landed your first full-time job and are ready to leave the “broke college student” part of your life behind and start earning some real income. The problem is that financial experts say if you don’t start saving every extra cent then you’re financially doomed. Not exactly what you wanted to hear because it leaves you feeling just as broke as you were in college.
Don’t worry, you won’t be doomed to fail. However, saving should be a top priority because you will probably want to buy a house, car, or go on a nice vacation one day. Not to mention saving for retirement.
To help you get started, here are a few ways you can boost your savings early.
Develop good saving habits
If you haven’t already, it’s important to lay your financial foundation by learning to save and practice saving every month. It can be tempting to live it up with your larger paychecks, but you never know when you might need to fall back on your savings.
Have you heard of financial gurus talking about “paying yourself first”? That means you should commit to putting away a portion of every paycheck directly into your savings account. If you want to make things even easier, you can even set up an automatic savings transfer so you don’t forget to pay yourself.
Budget like a boss
Once you’re the master of saving, you need to sit down and craft your battle plan so you know where the rest of your money will go. There are a lot of budgeting tools, like FinanceWorks, which make it easier to build a budget you know you can commit to.
Combining a good habit of saving with a strong budget, you’ll be surprised at how much you can save, take care of bills, and still have a little left over.
Don’t disregard the value of cash
Do you carry cash? Do you actually use cash?
As technology gets more advanced, more and more 20-somethings don’t carry cash and stick to using their debit cards. While this does make paying easier, only carrying your debit card can contribute to you over spending.
When you carry cash, you can only carry so much and won’t be tempted to make a huge purchase on a whim. Plus, handing over cash is not fun because you see it go into a drawer and you don’t get it back. On the other hand, you will always get your cards back ready to go for the next purchase that could bust your budget.
So, do you feel like carrying cash now?
Make saving fun
Saving money doesn’t feel fun because you’re usually are putting off doing fun things so you can save money. What if we told you that it’s possible to have fun while saving?
When you make saving a game, you’ll find yourself saving more and more. Set a goal for yourself and save up to buy a hypothetical product. Once you hit that goal, find another product you want to “save for” and do it again. Before you know it, your savings will grow exponentially.
You can also open a savings account, like our Prize Savings Account, that give you the opportunity to win prizes by how much you save. That’s a pretty cool incentive, right?
Embrace the DIY culture
You’ve probably seen all the DIY videos floating around your Facebook feed wondering if you could try it yourself. Go for it! Making, fixing, and doing tasks yourself will save you a lot of money in the long run because you won’t have to buy it or pay someone to do it.
If you want to try doing more things yourself to save money, the Internet is a wonderful place to look it up and learn how to do almost anything.
Don’t be too strict
While you want to stay in check and not fall off the wagon, you can’t be too hard on yourself because that ultimately leads to rebelling against your budget with an unplanned shopping spree. There has to be some room to have fun and treat yourself from time to time.
It’s like when you start a fitness plan. You have to budget in a cheat day so you don’t get into trouble. When you’re making your budget, leave some money aside and use it for whatever your heart desires. You’ll see that it’s possible to save and live at the same time.