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Welcome back to WhatAWanderousWorld!
Okay.. I have struggled with money just like everyone else and I am still by no means perfect, BUT I’m happy to say that I will be debt free within 3 months!
I don’t even have to explain how exciting that is!!
Today, I want to show you a few money saving ideas that can help you onto the same path that I took! (You can also see other financial changes we made in my post Changes To Make Now To Help Better Your Future!) The answer to paying off debt fast is a DEBT SNOWBALL (I will be doing an entire post on that subject here shortly).
The first step to achieving an effective debt snowball is to lay out a budget and then find an extra $200 per month within that budget. “But what if I don’t necessarily have an extra $200 per month??” Trust me, it’s there and we will find it!
In this post, I will show you a few different savings plans to help you find your extra $200 per month!
1. $5.00 Savings Challenge
For those of you that don’t use cash, don’t scroll past just yet! There is an adaptation that I came up with that may make this one work for you!
When trying to find our extra $200, I did a little research and came across this idea on Pintrest. The whole idea behind the $5.00 savings plan is very simple; save every $5.00 bill that you come into contact with! Pretty simple right??
We did this challenge a while back over the course of about 6 months and we were able to save roughly $230-$285 per month!
For those of you that don’t use cash, there are a few different options for you too. You could:
- Get $5.00 cash back whenever you have a purchase ending in $5.00! ($5.00 / $25.00 / $45.32 / and so on…)
- Transfer $5.00 to your savings account whenever you have a purchase ending in $5.00!
- Or who says that it has to end in $5.00? What if you save $5.00 every time you make any purchase? Or just when you buy gas? Or whenever you buy lunch? (This will only work if you make these purchases often)
The cashless $5.00 savings challenge is a mere idea of mine and we have yet to test it. If you try it, PLEASE let me know how it worked for you!!
2. Cut Back On Subscriptions And Memberships
Okay, we ALL get sucked into the subscription abyss but you can always get out of it because you can cancel your subscriptions at any time! (At least most of them you can.. some have contracts..)
Entertainment (TV and Movies)
How many entertainment subscriptions do you have? And of those subscriptions, how many do you actually use?? Do you NEED all of those subscriptions?
Yes, I understand that have some stuff on Hulu that they don’t have on Netflix or Prime, but it might be worth “suffering” for a couple months with only one of them.. Or none of them?… Because that could be $20-$40 right there!
Or cable! Don’t get me started on the stupidity of cable.. It is the most ridiculous thing that you could spend money on and a HUGE waste thereof! Cable costs roughly $50 to $75 MINIMUM per month for 200+ channels that you don’t watch and maybe 5-10 that you do! What in the actual F*CK?? YOU DON’T NEED CABLE! Cancel that shit and keep that extra $50 to $200 per month!
Tip: It’s way cheaper to just pay for internet and Netflix… Save some dough yo! 😉
Now how many mail subscriptions do you have? (Magazines, newspaper, etc.) And of those subscriptions, how many do you actually utilize?? Or do you receive your items and just toss them into the pile because you’ll ‘read it later’?.. Yea, that’s what I thought.. There is another $10-$25!
I really think that subscription boxes are one of the coolest things that businesses have come up with in a while BUT you don’t NEED it..
Subscription boxes can be super affordable and stupidly expensive.. Depending on what you’re subscribed to, you could be spending anywhere between $10 all the way up to $75 OR MORE! PER SUBSCRIPTION!!! Am I the only one who sees how ridiculous that is??
If you’re subscribing to more than one box per month, cancelling those could get you your entire extra $200 per month right there!! But for argument’s sake we’ll say that were saving roughly $45-50 per month on those.
I am 100% guilty of this one… I am notorious for having a gym membership that I never use… But I used to be so into fitness and weight lifting that I refuse to let my membership go because I “might” use it and I refuse to admit to myself that I’m super lazy now…
Well, reality time! We cancelled our gym membership which saved us $55 per month!
Most gym memberships cost anywhere between $20 all of the way up to $200 per month! Depending on the cost of your membership, you may have found your $200! For this post, we’ll say that the savings here is $55 per month.
Oh game subscriptions.. The video game that you continuously pay for.. What a wonderful invention! For the creators’ pocket book! (Waste of money in my opinion..)
I’m talking about Xbox game passes or ABC Mouse (which my kids do use). These are things that we like to have but things that we don’t NEED! I love having ABC Mouse for my kids but they will survive a few months without it..
Each of these subscriptions is about $10 per month, cancel both and that’s another $20 saved!
3. Extra Unnecessary Purchases
You would be absolutely AMAZED by the amount of money that you could save just by being more conscientious about your purchases!
This is another one that I am super guilty of… I would literally go to the coffee shop on my way to work EVERY SINGLE DAY… This is not something that I’m proud of because I could by no means afford these trips.
When it clicked in my head and I figured out exactly how much I was spending at coffee shops, I was appalled! I was spending around $100 on coffee per month! Sometimes more!
I was not about to part with my coffee so setting a simple $20 monthly coffee budget for myself (about one coffee per week), saved us over $80 per month!
In App or In Game Purchases
I feel the same way about these stupid f*cking things as I do about cable… They’re stupid and a HUGE waste of money..
For all of you gamers out there, let me get this straight.. You guys buy gaming consoles for hundreds of dollars just to begin with and then you have to buy the games too. Okay, makes sense so far. But now you wanna spend an extra $5 for a special gun for the character in your game? Uhh.. okay? Then you wanna spend $10+ to BUY GAME MONEY TO USE IN YOUR GAME??? YOU ARE LITERALLY TRADING REAL MONEY FOR FAKE MONEY!
Let me say that again… YOU ARE LITERALLY TRADING REAL MONEY FOR FAKE MONEY!!!!!!!!!!!!
I cannot even believe people spend their money on this and yet my own husband is guilty of it… 🙁 But that’s not the point here.. Okay, let’s say that you spend $25 on in game purchases every month, cutting that back to $10 per month is a savings of $15 per month! Or you could be smart and not spend your money on something so stupid and save $25 per month! Your choice though.. 😉
Gas Station Trips
These fall into the same category as coffee runs and you don’t realize how much money you’re spending on it until you actually sit down and look!
My husband was guilty of this one.. He would go to the gas station (because there was one right next to our house) before work, after work, or just when he was thirsty! He would never spend much, usually around $3 to $7 but that shit was adding up FAST! Ultimately, he was spending around $150+ per month!!
We did the same thing here that we did about my severe coffee addiction and we set him a budget of $50 per month. This saved us over $100 per month!
Okay, we are ALL guilty of this.. That’s the whole reason that there are candy bars next to the checkout at grocery stores!
Did you know that’s why they put candy and other “sale” items next to checkout counters? They’re literally there to try and get you to buy one or two more items on an impulse! They just want your money!
Impulse buys are a little harder to track unless you keep a detailed budget and expense tracker, which I’m gonna go out on a limb here and say that you don’t.. Not very many people do.. If you do, kutos..
For the sake of this post and using my family as a reference, we’ll just estimate that we spend about $100 per month on impulses if not more! How many times have you been shopping and saw something that you didn’t know you needed until now yet it costs $100 by itself?.. And now you HAVE to have it.. That’s not even counting the candy bars at checkout!
Stop impulse buying. Make a shopping list and check it twice! Potential savings of $100+ per month!
4. Survey Sites
Okay, this one is not my favorite but I do know that it is possible to make money from these sites and apps. It does take some time and dedication but it is possible. People are already earning hundreds extra per month with these sites!
These are the best sites and apps that I have come across:
5. Save Your Change
Okay, saving your change is probably not going to get you that extra $200 per month but it will damn sure help!
Did you know that a single 2 liter bottle filled with dimes equals out to around $500?
We’ll say for argument’s sake that you come home every night with $.80 of change in your pocket. If you put that in a jar and save it you would have roughly $25 by the end of the month! Doesn’t even seem like it, huh?
6. Cash-Back Apps And Credit Cards
I absolutely love cash back apps and credit cards! They are brilliant! Because you literally earn money for things you were going to spend money on anyways! It’s a win-win situation!
I love cash back apps like:
These apps are so stupidly easy to use! You go shopping just like normal and you get paid for certain items that you buy! It couldn’t be any simpler than that!
Some great credit cards to earn cash back are:
Do not, I repeat DO NOT just start applying to credit cards all willy nilly! If you do not have good credit, applying to credit cards with no chance of being approved only hurts your credit score in the long run which is the OPPOSITE of what the post is about!
If you are unsure whether or not you should apply for a credit card, please talk to your bank or another financial professional before hand.
I suggest using at least one or two different methods to save that extra $200 per month and these are only a few ideas on how to do so. There are so many other great money saving ideas out there!
Do you have any ideas for saving $200 per month? Let us know! We would love to hear from you!