It takes time to learn where you are spending your money, but it helps to analyze your expenses and define what you are spending your money on. To fix your finances, it is recommended to evaluate your expenses regularly each month. This will help you understand how you spend your money.
It’s not easy to save money consistently over a long period of time. We all have different expenses based on our lifestyle which causes us to spend and save a little differently.
Most Americans cannot afford an emergency $1,000 medical expense. While people are already drowning in student loans or credit card debt, it is no surprise Americans also have a difficult time saving money.
Unemployment might be low but wages are low as well. People could always use more money in their wallet. When you are unable to find that extra money at work, it is helpful to make small changes to maximize the money you earn.
Take advantage of technology to find discounts and fix your finances
This is what optimizing your wallet is all about; lowering your monthly bills in small increments to help you maximize savings. Coffee has become one of the most popular beverages of choice for individuals to grab on-the-go. The major coffee companies have cashed in on the caffeine rush. New mobile apps have been developed to place orders in real time and streamline the entire process.
Both Dunkin’ and Starbucks offer discounts and reward programs for their mobile app users. Dunkin’ is more likely to offer promotions more often than Starbucks, but they both manage to keep their customer base happy. Be sure to download their mobile apps so you can collect cash back rewards for your purchases.
Save money on everyday expenses to fix your finances
Are you overspending on everyday essentials like soap or toilet paper?
Most people tend to purchase name brand products at 3-4X the price of the standard products. You can find identical products by the store’s branded items for a fraction of the price.
Today, retailers are introducing their own branded products to offer consumers lower prices for the same product. Brands like Walmart’s Equate, Target’s Up&Up, and CVS Health’s Just the Basics; have all introduced their own products ranging from face washes, tooth pastes, shampoo and conditioners.
There are also many different reward programs offered by these retailers to provide cash back for loyal returning customers. CVS has introduced a large amount of private label brands. Their CVS Health brand makes vitamins and supplements, while their Gold Emblem brand makes candies and snacks.
Take advantage of food store shopping lists and other big box retailers that offer shopping lists for discounted items. The membership shopping clubs offer premium products at reduced price with their buying power and their loyal customer base. Learning how to grocery shop consistently will help you save money on food and avoid going out to eat at restaurants as well.
Earn prepaid debit card, gift cards and rewards to fix your finances
Of course there are many different stores that already offer rewards to their returning customers. Pharmacies, airlines and grocery stores, they all offer their customers rewards and cash back programs.
But, did you know there are actually websites that will pay for your opinions?
You can get paid for your opinion. Global brands and big box retailers want to know what their customers have to say. Amazon, Walmart, Target, Hulu and Netflix, they all are constantly distributing new surveys to learn more information about their consumer preferences.
You can also get paid to read your emails by companies like InboxDollars. You read that right. To continue earning money, you can simply check your inbox each day for surveys delivered directly to your email. There are other survey options that will give you rewards and points to shop online, but in my opinion the best choice is to collect cash for your opinions.
Negotiate your monthly bills to fix your finances
There is no ditching monthly bills. Whether you are paying a mortgage or paying your monthly rent; your living expense will be one of the largest chunks of your outgoing funds each month.
In addition, you will have to find good car insurance and home or renters insurance policies to protect yourself. Luckily, there are many good car insurance providers that will be willing to negotiate your monthly rates. Based on your driving history, credit score and currently lifestyle, you can lower your payments.
Fortunately, insurance companies will also give you discounts if you bundle your car insurance policy with your home owners insurance policy. This is a nice added benefit for home owners and helps simplify the insurance shopping experience.
There are also many different renters insurance providers like Lemonade that will extend coverage for as little as $5 per month. You can search online and fill out your application in roughly 2 minutes with Lemonade, receiving approval instantly.
Find alternatives to traditional cable TV
Another common expense for Americans is internet and television. In the past, US households were locked in to paying high fees each month to have access to internet, cable TV and home phone lines. It was not until recently that consumers started to make the big switch into the video streaming world. Consumers have the power to counter internet and TV providers to demand lower rates.
There are SO many options to choose from when it comes to television and each provider has their own benefits. It is wise to call your internet and TV provider to negotiate a lower rate on your monthly bills regularly otherwise, you can choose to switch providers. Verizon Fios would love to steal a Time Warner customer while Hulu would kill to win over a Netflix subscriber. They all want your business, so it is useful to play your cards right asking for lower rates.
There are many different smart budgeting tips you can take advantage of to lower your monthly payments including gym memberships, your cell phone bill and even outstanding credit card debts.
Ways to lower your phone bills to fix your finances
Phone companies are similar to television companies. Phone companies are willing to spend millions of dollars per year on advertising campaigns to win new business.
Verizon, AT&T, Sprint and T-mobile are the more popular phone service providers. Boost Mobile is another big phone provider but is largely known as a lesser brand than the previous brands mentioned. You can force the phone companies against each other to try and lower your rates.
For example, Sprint will pay up to $600 to your current service provider to move your phone plan over to their service.
There are also many prepaid phone plans that are helpful for people who do not want to commit to annual phone plans. Simple phone plans help consumers to find affordable phone plans. Consumer Cellular, Cricket Wireless, Simple Mobile and Mint Mobile are well known prepaid phone companies that offer good services for their phones.
Reduce your energy usage to fix your finances
With new technology constantly being introduced, devices get outdated. New technology typically is more efficient, requiring less energy to operate and built to last longer as well. TV’s, air conditioning units, refrigerators, dish washers, washing machines, microwaves and vacuum cleaners. All of these machines require electricity to operate and grow obsolete when new technology is introduced.
Finding new appliances to replace old outdated appliances is a good practice to consider when you are trying to reduce your energy consumption. You can find efficient appliances to drastically lower your energy usage and lower your electricity bills. If you want to finance your new household appliance, you can choose from a number of rates so you can balance out your expenses over time and find the best option for you.
Take advantage of coupons and discounts
You might be surprised to hear, but there are tons of different ways to find coupons available for you. You can find printable coupons available to download then print from the comfort of your home as well. Many different food stores have introduced mobile apps to give them the ability to redeem coupons in real time as they browse the store. Although these coupons might not fix your finances altogether, they will definitely help.
Target, Walmart, BestBuy and Costco, they all offer sales and discount promotions to their club members and mobile app users. It’s become a trend throughout America and the rest of the world. Large companies have grown so massive with their nationwide reach to offer sales promotions throughout the entire country for their loyal customers.
For example, BestBuy offers different options for customers who need a new computer, printer, and other supplies you might need to go back to school. There are certain qualifications based on your current financial background like a credit check and small down payment on your items. You can find bargains by shopping at online retail partners like RTB Shopper to find discounted rates on these programs to see if you qualify.
Take advantage of lease to own programs
Along with seasonal promotions, some retailers like BestBuy offer financing promotions that give consumers the ability to walk out of the store with high-priced items like computers or televisions with the ability to pay over time.
Rent to own programs are helpful to get you the products you need in advance and pay for them over time as you receive your paycheck. Leasing to own electronics might not be for everyone, but it comes in handy when you need a new computer for school or a new refrigerator for your house. Explore different rent to own options and remember to compare different rates before buying anything.
Track your expenses and income
It’s not fun, but tracking your expenses it very effective. If you take a look at what you spend your money on each, it will give you a better idea where your money is going and where you can afford to make cut backs when necessary. There are many mobile apps like Acorn and Mint that allow you to track your expenses, track your income, and stay on top of your personal finances.
Some of these tools give you the ability to set alerts either through text, email or push notification to stay on top of any unexpected purchases. If your credit card gets used for a transaction that you are not aware of, you can be alerted. There are also many different personal identity protection plans and insurance coverage plans that you can explore to give you more security.
Pay your bills on time
Auditing your wallet is not an overnight gig but an ongoing job to continuously stay aware of. Growing into a habit of reviewing your credit card and bank statements will give you a much better understanding to check yourself each month. It is hard to stay on top of yourself during each day, but as you analyze your monthly statements you will get more insight on your financials. This will teach you to manage your finances better and provide more financial security for yourself.
If you are able to manage to pay your bills on time, you can continue to work at reducing your expenses over time. As you continue to pay your bills on time, this will give creditors more confidence in your ability to pay back future loans. With more confidence in your credit, lenders will be able to offer you more favorable rates in the future.