A year of saving
Moving from one year into the next makes us want to set new goals, assess our lives, and make positive changes for our future. That’s why January is such a good time to rethink your family budget and spending habits, and to really commit to saving money all year long.
The good news is when it comes to saving, often it just takes small, practical steps to get you headed in the right direction. We’ve compiled some great ideas from The Simple Dollar1 to give you a bit of inspiration for your own year of saving.
- Turn off the TV. You’ll save some energy if you keep the tube turned off more often, but in addition to that you’ll be less exposed to ads tempting you and your family members to purchase more stuff, and you’ll have more time to focus on a side business or a part-time job. Once you’re used to watching less television you might even decide to downgrade your cable service, saving even more money! As an added bonus, less TV can also mean more family time.
- Make instead of buying. When it’s time to give a gift, sew, knit, bake or make it by hand instead. Not all handcrafted items are cheap to make, but some can be very inexpensive and will most certainly be cherished by the recipient. Who wouldn’t want a few dozen of The Best Homemade Chocolate Chip Cookies in the Entire World?. If you’re not crafty, give the gift of your time or labor instead. Free babysitting, gardening help or small home repairs are great ways to help others while saving some money.
- Wait 30 days. If you want to buy something, wait 30 days before making the purchase. That 30-day waiting period will give you a chance to determine exactly how important the item really is to you. If the urge has passed by the end of the month, you’ll have saved yourself some money.
- Plan your weekly meals around sales. Scour the flyers that come in your newspaper every week and plan your meals around what’s on sale. For more tips on tightening up your food budget, read our article on good, cheap eats.
- Set up a family fun jar. Check out our article on how to get the whole family involved in saving loose change to put towards a fun family activity.
- Compare prices online. There are websites that have already done all the work for you when it comes to comparing prices. Check out How To Save Money for a list of the best price comparison sites in Canada, and Shopify for a list of American resources.
- Shop after the holidays are over. Maybe you already buy Christmas-themed items in the days and weeks after Christmas, but do you do it all year long? Remember to check for great deals on seasonally themed items throughout the year. Valentine’s Day, Easter, Thanksgiving and Halloween – you can get great deals on décor and other items after each holiday is over.
- Volunteer. Instead of spending money on expensive family outings, pack everyone up and volunteer in your community instead. You’ll get out, stay active, meet new people, and help others while you’re at it. Visit com for a list of all the wonderful Foresters volunteer opportunities near you, or take advantage of the Foresters Community Grants program and organize a charity activity of your own.
- Raise awareness. Lower your energy bill by raising your awareness of all the ways you are wasting energy in your home. January 10 is Cut Your Energy Costs Day, so it’s a great day to:
- Schedule an appointment to get your heating system tuned up
- Turn down the thermostat and put on a sweater
- Walk to work instead of driving
- Check for air leaks in your home and seal them up
- Conduct a do-it-yourself home energy audit
At Foresters FinancialTM, we believe that you deserve more than a financial services provider– you deserve a partner that will help you prosper. That’s why as a member you have access to Everyday Money, our toll-free financial helpline that connects you to an accredited counselor who can help answer your questions about your personal financial matters such as debt management and budgeting. We also have great information on MyForesters.com, including webinars, articles and downloadable resources to help you thrive. For more great ways to save money check out these ten simple tips.
414624A CAN/US (01/17)