Unless you have unlimited amounts of money, there will always be times when you struggle with your finances. You may have to borrow at times as well and you may look at taking out a payday loan when faced with an emergency. This can be a temporary fix, but if you want to manage your money better, you need to spend some time working on it and figuring out how to best utilise your finances. To help, here are some top tips so you can cope financially and eliminate your worries.
Cut Down Your Expenses
The first and most obvious tip to help your finances is to cut down on your spending. Grab your most recent bank statements and go over every penny that’s left your account. You’ll be shocked at how much you actually spend on frivolities! Instead of ordering a takeaway 3 times a week, try cutting it down to only once and you’ll soon notice the savings you can make. It might not seem like a lot at the time, but the little spends add up faster than you realise and before you know it, you’ve blown through hundreds. You don’t have to go without completely, but it’s wise to reduce your outgoings where possible. This will leave you with more money at the end of each month and you won’t be in a sticky situation if you have an unexpected bill.
Budgeting Is Your Friend
If you truly want to get a handle on your finances, you definitely need to create a budget. It’s easy to get your wages, pay your bills and then blow what’s left on luxuries and treats. However, this can be a slippery slope and you may find you face more money problems sooner than you think. Try crafting a realistic budget that shows you exactly how much money you have to spend each week and do your best to stick to it. It helps to have a target or end goal so that if you feel tempted, you can shake yourself out of it and get back on track. Make sure your budget isn’t too restrictive otherwise you’ll feel the urge to splurge even more. Keep your budget reasonable and allow yourself a little luxury now and then. Your budget shouldn’t be difficult to stick to, it should work with your life and allow you to have everything you need without breaking the bank.
Save When You Can
You probably start the month out determined to save loads of money and move hundreds into your savings account. But by the end of the month, you’ve drained your accounts and not managed to save a penny. This is a common problem and it’s because you’re making yourself short by stashing loads in one go. Once you’ve got a budget in place, you’ll know how much money you have to live on. Then at the end of the week, pop any left over cash from your budget into your savings account. This way it’s not money you’ll miss as you know you’ll get your new budget amount the next day. Saving little and often is a more manageable way to build your funds and helps you manage your finances.
Manage Your Payments
If you want to cope with your finances better, you need to make sure you’re managing your monthly bills and repayments effectively. Missing one payment can have a knock-on effect on your finances and cause you to become behind in your repayments. That’s before you even look at the late fees you could be charged, so paying on time is essential. If you find it hard to remember when and who you need to pay, try automating the payments so you don’t have to worry about them. If they can’t be automated, then set up reminders on your smartphone. Once you get the notification, stop what you’re doing and pay the bill. Otherwise, you may end up just forgetting again.
Coping with your finances can be made even harder if you don’t know how to shop smart. One small change can have a massive impact. For example, try switching where you shop and go somewhere slightly cheaper. You’ll be able to find most of the same products but leave the store with more money in your pockets. It also pays to shop around when it comes to your utilities like your broadband. Check when your current contracts run out and start looking for a cheaper deal elsewhere close to the end. You’ll find that a lot of places offer better deals to new customers, so it can be worth going with someone new.
Hunt For Bargains
When you shop around, make sure you’re on the lookout for the best bargains you can get. Pay attention to which supermarkets have the best deals at the moment and adjust your shopping trips accordingly. Similarly, if there’s something you need but it will push you over your budget, check out multiple retailers before committing and see if it’s cheaper elsewhere. When shopping online, try going for sites that currently have deals or money off your first purchase. These little savings can really make a big difference to your finances in the long run.
Coping financially isn’t always easy, and you might sometimes struggle to get back on your feet. However, with small changes, you can have a big impact and you’ll soon get your grip back on them. Try making use of some of these tips and see the savings you could make. It’s not impossible to have control over your finances, it just takes dedication and the strength to say no to unnecessary purchases. Within a month, you’ll be able to see the difference it can make, and you’ll soon be able to see the wood from the trees once again.