Helping you Put Away some Extra Cash for Savings
Best Money-Saving Tips When You Have a Low Income
Having a low income can be frustrating, especially because bills constantly need to be paid and you cannot always buy what you want. As much as you desperately want to earn more money to meet your needs, a better job might not show up and you need to make do with what you have.
To save money on a low income, you must be strategic about your spending habits. Saving money can seem complicated or impossible when you have an income you feel is barely capable of covering your present expenses.
Here is a list of seven tips to help you make the best financial decisions and save money quickly to meet your money-saving goals.
Top Seven Money-Saving Tips
1. Budget Your Income
So, how do you save money on a low income? You budget! To budget your income, you need to evaluate your spending habits and restructure how you spend money. Identify where you are presently in your finances: Are you in debt? Do you have dependents and what do you spend your money on?
After you have outlined your list of expenses, identify things you can cut from those expenses. You should focus on necessary expenses and remove anything else that you can do without. When saving money fast on a low income, you cannot afford to spend money on unnecessary luxuries.
2. Pay Less for Expenses
Find a way to pay less for your core expenses. You can try negotiating for lower rent or find ways to get discounts on shopping. A quick online search will help you identify products or services with ongoing promotions and discount offers.
If you own a car, you know the basic upkeep and gas it needs to run can be very expensive. Consider a money-saving and environmentally friendly alternative like taking a bus or train. Subscriptions and membership plans can eat into your money more quickly than you realize. It's best to pause or cancel certain subscriptions while you focus on your goal of saving money.
3. Create an Effective Saving Strategy
To save money that will hit your target financial goal, it’s best to set up automatic transfers into a savings account. The amount you choose to deduct from your checking account should help you reach your goal in a matter of months or weeks. If you are saving for an urgent goal, don’t experiment with manual savings — that is don’t transfer money over to a savings account manually because your emotions can get in the way. If you decide not to do automatic transfers, you must be very disciplined.
4. Make Extra Income
If you're struggling to save from your current low income, then consider taking on an extra job or side hustle. You can rent out rooms if you have extra space in your home or consider long- or short-term rentals on platforms like Airbnb. You can also try offering freelancing services with a specific skill set.
If you have a time-consuming job that won't afford you the opportunity to have a side hustle, then it might be time to negotiate for better pay. If you don't feel comfortable asking for a pay raise, don't be afraid to ask for other privileges like work-from-home benefits or more vacation days.
Another way to earn extra cash is by selling old or unwanted stuff. Websites like eBay and Gumtree allow users to make additional income from selling online.
5. Do It Yourself
If you can't scale your income right now, then you need to adopt some low-income saving practices. Eating out frequently is one way to default on your savings journey. Instead, you can make your own meals. While that might sound daunting if you're not used to cooking, there are lots of recipes online with follow-along videos.
You can also figure out how to do home repairs and maintenance to save yourself additional costs. YouTube is a great place to get instructional videos on how to do virtually any home maintenance job. You'll save much more when you do it yourself than when you hire someone to do it for you!
6. Adopt Frugal Habits
If you're asking yourself how to save money on a low income, consider adopting a frugal lifestyle might sound like depriving yourself of fun and sweet things. However, it’s about being conscious of your spending habits and intentionally restricting yourself from overspending.
Being frugal will help you overcome impulse buying. So, when you're going shopping, take time to write a list of things you need before heading out. If you stick to your list, you can save money and avoid going over your budget.
Another tip is to always wait 24 hours before buying from an online store. Shopping online can be tricky, especially with the allure of what the item displayed before you has to offer. But many times, people buy things they don't really need on the spur of the moment. To avoid spending unnecessarily, make your decision after 24 hours; if it's still worth it, go get it, but don't break your budget in doing so!
7. Get Yourself Some Support
Saving money is not easy; saving money fast is challenging. If you are starting to feel overwhelmed, remember you don’t have to do this alone! There are some effective ways to get help from others on your savings journey.
First, you can start a savings challenge. Challenges are exciting and motivating if you find it hard to stick to a plan. More importantly, get someone on board to be your accountability partner. This person will be responsible for checking up on you and how you're progressing with your plan.
Second, join a no-spending group on social media. These kinds of groups are focused on aggressive saving and you can help yourself by feeding off the intense energy to save that radiates from the community.
Saving money is possible even if you have a low income. So to answer the question: "How do you save money on a low income?" you might have to sacrifice certain pleasurable activities and products in the meantime, but it's worth it in the end. The tips highlighted above will not only help you reach your savings goal but also help you develop better money management habits.