SaverLife’s Top 5 Tips for Saving Money
We’ve heard so much great feedback from the SaverLife Community on money hacks they use to stretch their dollars and meet their savings goals.
Let’s take a look at some of the top money-saving strategies that Savers have shared:
1. Negotiating with Bill Companies
“For our medical bills, we got payments reduced by hospital and have monthly payment plans. I always call the company when I can’t pay a full bill, I work with them.”
Credit cards companies and other creditors want to get paid and keep you as a customer, so it is in their best interest to negotiate with you – but they won’t do it if you don’t ask! Brush up on your negotiation strategies before you contact them, take a look at your budget, and only offer what you can reasonably pay. Once the hardship passes, revisit your budget and revise your payment plans to reduce the amount of interest you pay over the life of the loan.
2. Collecting Unemployment
“I collect unemployment while I’m on break. I pay minimum balances on things and pay it back later.”
I have coached many people who are uncomfortable about applying for public benefits. Social supports like unemployment and food and rental assistance exist to help you through hard times. If you are facing financial challenges, check into eligibility for benefits to help you get back on track.
3. Taking It One Day at a Time
“I take it one day at a time. I like being creative. I try to figure it out because I always have in the past.”
Great advice! A mindful approach to dealing with a shortfall may reveal options you overlook if you react to the emotions or try to tackle everything at once. If you have options other than your savings that is great, but if using your savings is the best choice to deal with the situation, do what you must and rebuild when you are financially stable again.
4. Doing Odd Jobs
“We’re always getting by. We haven’t lost anything but we struggle sometimes. We do other odd jobs, brainstorm how to help each other open our own businesses. Soon my son will be in 1st grade, so I could get a full-time job. We’re feeling like we don’t want to just get by anymore, we want to be comfortable.”
Side jobs and short-term gigs can help you bridge financial gaps or can even become a regular income stream. I have been self-employed for more than 20 years. I have never worked harder or been happier. Fiverr and TaskRabbit are turnkey ways to jumpstart your side hustle.
5. Relying on Support Networks and Savings
“In a low period of income, we count on my girls or borrow from my parents. In a high period, we set aside money as savings.”
Family or community support is often the best way to handle a short-term cash flow problem. And it’s wise to set aside extra money in savings when you have a financial windfall. Don’t worry about the fact that you have to use it. That’s exactly the reason to set it aside!
Which Saver tips inspire you to save, track, or plan more? Tell us: What do YOU do to make the most of your money?
Saundra Davis is a nationally recognized financial coach and educator. Her experience in the U.S. Navy, where she made every money mistake possible, and her 20 years serving community-based organizations led her to the reality that the best way to help people find a path out of poverty is to help them become their own financial expert.