Do you have a hard time saving a few dollars here and there every month? If you do, you can feel at ease in knowing that you’re not the only one fighting this uphill battle with money. In a recent survey, about one-quarter of Americans admitted that they don’t have $1000 saved in case of emergencies. When you don’t even have emergency money set aside, it can make big purchases like buying a house or car seem like figments of your imagination! But it’s possible to learn how to save money when you are broke.
Although those goals might seem far-fetched, that’s no reason to give up on your financial dreams. The key thing to remember in this situation is to shift your focus. When you’re broke, it’s so easy to focus on just that… the fact that you’re broke… Instead of focusing on what you can’t do, focus on what you can do… you can actually do a lot being broke.
Here are some tips on how to save money when you are broke.
No Money, No Problem: Tips on How to Save Money When You Are Broke
One of the biggest and most selfless things you can do while being broke is to give back to your community. People tend to think that in order to do anything worthwhile, you have to have tons of money and the reality if it is that you don’t. Seeing that there are other people in the world less fortunate than you will definitely help you shift your focus.
The whole point of saving money is not necessarily the dollar amount but more so of just getting into the habit of saving period; even if it’s only a few dollars every pay period. You’ll soon see that those few dollars you save will eventually add up to big savings.
Until you start to see progress from your saving efforts, you’re going to feel like you’re never going to rise above being broke… it’s completely normal to feel that way. Just know that you will rise above being broke only if you make a few changes.
You’ve got to:
- take an in-depth look at where and how you’re spending your money
- be willing to make changes and sacrifices
- have a clear understanding of what saving is and how it can positively impact your life
Here’s how to go about saving money all while being broke.
Get It In Your Mind That No Amount is Too Small
When learning how to save money when you are broke, no amount is too small. Lots of people feel like the only way to truly begin to save is that you have to save large amounts of money. It’s that type of thinking that discourages people from saving in the first place. You can save as little as $3 a week or $10 per pay period to set aside. Just be sure to put your money in a savings account that earns interest (it needs to be as far away from your checking account as possible!).
Getting it in your mind that no amount is too small to save is a way of paying yourself. It might sound silly to think of paying yourself with your own money but that’s really the best way to look at it… the only difference is that this form of paying yourself is for long-term goals, not for you to immediately spend.
Being able to watch your money grow is what should motivate you to continue saving and later on down the line, see if you can add more to what you’re saving.
Make Saving a Personal Game You’re Trying to Beat Yourself At
At this point, you should have made saving a habit that you consistently abide by. Now that saving is a habit, it’s now time for you to look at other ways you can set added money to the side. It needs to be your mission to beat your personal best of saving $5 every pay period and turn it into $10 per pay period.
If you’re able to find areas to cut back and save $10 every pay period, push yourself to look at other areas to see where you can save even more. Think of it as a video game and you’re constantly trying to make it to the next level of the game… it gets harder with each level but you’re one level closer to being your own undefeated champion!
Some great areas to start with include:
- Cooking more meals instead of eating out so much
- Getting rid of memberships you don’t use
- Cut the cable cords and stream television
- If you have young children, ditch daycare services and check out more affordable childcare options. Nannies don’t have overhead, which can make their rates lower. Be sure to research all of the costs associated with hiring a nanny.
If you are currently spending too much money in these areas, you need to make the necessary changes. Ding so will not only save you additional money to set aside but it will also just make you feel more confident and aware of your spending habits, forcing you to make better spending decisions.
Go One Month Without Spending ANY Money Outside of Bills and Necessities
Ok, so this one might be an “easier said than done” type of challenge for yourself but if you decide to try this out, you must know that the foundation of this challenge is to understand the difference between needs and wants. Because we’re all humans, we tend to confuse the two but there actually is a HUGE difference between needing something and wanting something. According to genfkd.org, your needs aren’t always as they appear, meaning that the things a lot of people think they need aren’t detrimental to their survival. The sooner you can understand that the sooner you’ll be making smarter financial choices.
When applying this to your finances, it definitely requires a substantial amount of discipline.
You have to look at it as a way of:
- getting your finances in order
- tackling your debt
Debt is one of the biggest reasons why it’s hard for most people to save. If you can go just one month without spending money on unnecessary expenses, you will have a clear-cut view of how much money you truly have after paying all your bills and necessities.
Saving IS Possible
Knowing how to save money when you are broke isn’t easy but it’s important. You could take the additional money you find to put towards credit card debt to help you get out of it faster or you can stash it away with the rest of your savings. Either option is a win-win situation. You’ll be much happier with your decision to save no matter the situation.
Now that you know that saving is possible, are you ready to start saving some money?
AUTHOR LaTia Longuemire
My name is LaTia Longuemire. I enjoy writing, singing, and cooking in my spare time. My passion is helping others. At this stage in my lifetime, I'm primarily focused on my children. They are everything that keeps my world spinning.