Instant gratification is a stubborn bug that most people are struggling with, making it difficult to save money. You see something you want, and you decide to buy it instantly. The other name for this habit is impulse buying, an enemy to financial progress.
Earlier in life, especially in college days, this habit may look harmless. You are probably getting pocket money from your parents, and even if you are working for it, you probably do not have any responsibilities. You can therefore afford to buy a shoe you have spotted on display without giving it a second thought.
While shopping when you can is not bad, you should not spend your entire income on things. Remember, there is an unforeseeable future; emergencies that never announce their arrival. You need to set aside some funds for such occurrences.
Saving is a habit that is learned. The earlier you understand, the better for you because it takes a lot of sacrifices, discipline, and determination to have money that you cannot spend. This is the same discipline that will help you invest in the future, other than spending all your income on luxuries and liabilities.
If you are still a student, you are at the right place to start saving from the little allowance. If you plan your finances wisely, you will even have enough to enable you to hire the services of Peachy Essay to assist with your school assignments.
Budget on paper
Writing down your budget is a powerful tool to ensure you set something aside for savings. While doing the budget, you start with the income amount, then deduct the most basic needs first, followed by the wants, and finally, some luxuries that you can afford. What is left should go to savings. In cases where your income is minimal, you can forego some luxuries at the expense of saving.
Some financial advisors say you should save before spending, and then you fit your needs to what is left. This requires high levels of discipline, especially for the shopaholics. Trends come up every day, and you may want to keep up with the latest. Having a budget that you are following will ensure that you remain disciplined with your money and continue to live the best life you can afford.
Track your Expenditure
From an economic standpoint, human needs are unlimited, while resources are limited. You need to understand that you will never get everything you want since your needs keep evolving. The most dangerous financial habit is spending money without tracking where it is going since you will always be broke.
It would be beneficial to note down your daily expenses, beginning with things you could not do without, such as food and transport. That way, you can track the amount of money that goes into unnecessary stuff. Once you understand your spending habits, you will be better placed to put up a savings plan.
Savings is all about opportunity cost – the cost of foregoing one thing today for something else in the future. This does not necessarily have to be investment-related. You can even sacrifice eating out for a week to buy that shoe you have been admiring on the shop display.
Stay Away from Credit Cards
Credit cards are a trap. They are a debt trap that you will never get out of. There is an unquestionable comfort in spending money that you are yet to earn. But the pain of repaying the money is not worth it. Always remember that credit card money attracts interest and penalties for late repayment. You, therefore, end up even spending more than you intended.
Getting out of a credit card cycle can be an uphill task because once you repay, you get your credit limit back, and the temptations to spend come knocking. The best way out of this is to never sign up for the card. In case you already have one, we recommend you destroy it.
While credit cards can be helpful during emergencies, you can also create an emergency fund by saving over time.
It would help if you considered that you would need to have a favorable credit score to apply for loans in the future. If you misuse the credit card, it will haunt you at this point.
Explore Cheaper Accommodation options
We all need comfort and privacy, which usually come at a price. As a student, you might need to forego the luxury of living in your apartment and get into a shared arrangement. Sharing an apartment will mean you spend less on rent, fuel, and electricity, among other household amenities.
It is comforting to think that you will not live in a shared apartment forever, but you will be in school for a few semesters. Getting cool roommates is a bonus since you will enjoy your stay.
The other option for affordable accommodation is living on campus. The hostels might not be the most comfortable place to live, but they are inexpensive and convenient. Besides costing less than off-campus apartments, you will also save on transport. You can then use the surplus to shop for your favorite brands.
Buy more from Thrift Stores
Thrift stores are underrated. Used items are not necessarily old and worn out. Thrift stores can be such a deal for students since they can get trendy items at a more affordable price instead of buying brand new. Some brands make clearance sales for their old stock at good bargains.
The most recent trend is gaining popularity where people exchange clothes and shoes that they feel have been monotonous. The items have to be in good condition, though. This ensures that you get something different without spending any cash.
Thrift shopping is not only for clothes but can also be used for household items and even furniture. You can find these shops mostly on online platforms.
Normalize Cooking your Food
Eating out every day can be convenient but expensive. As a student, it is possible to prepare your food and avoid takeaways. You can plan and prepare your means in advance, freeze them, and heat them when it’s time to eat. This means that you will need to do your grocery shopping in bulk, saving you a few coins. You can also pack your snacks from home to avoid spending money on bitings.
If cooking is not an option, you can consider buying your food from the onsite cafeteria since the food there is affordable.