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So, Tyler and I are big finance people. That means, we care about where our money is going and how much money is coming in. However, the last couple months have really gotten the best of us finance wise because of multiple high expense things: presents, occasions, new apartment, traveling, and school. This gave us a real eye opening reality check when this new year started! We wanted to learn more about our spending habits to better track where we were spending too much and where we could cut back to save us money! I think we all have areas we could cut back to save so much a month and it’s important to have it all in front of you and make it a habit of tracking it. We spent some time looking at our sheets and finding ways we could cut back on our spending and save money each month!
Water instead of pop when eating out
Think about that for a minute, two pops at a restaurant estimate around $6. Now, say you eat out 5 times that month. That is $30 you’re spending on just POP. WHAT. No, we are drinking water instead cause that $0 sure sounds nice! I can just add a lemon for luxury 😉 Within this topic though, say cutting down the amount of times we eat out per month. That counts fast food too! Even eating out twice a month could be more than $60 which is crazy! We have started making more meals at home which is quite fun and you can make them healthy!
No More Ordering Coffee at Coffee Shops
With my new Nespresso machine I really really do not need to order coffee. Coffee adds up so fast at coffee shops! Say I only have 1 or 2 a week that’s still almost $30 or more on COFFEE. Cutting that expense out is truly going to save me some nice pennies each month. If you find yourself frivolously spending in this category too, think about investing in a nice at home coffee machine to help!
Rent Movies at Home
Tyler and I love movies and we love date night! BUT, after paying for $13 tickets each and then over $20 for popcorn and pop it adds up fast! Even doing that once a month can add almost $50 to expenses. Renting a movie at home costs under $10 usually which cuts your expense down $40 or more! WOAH. Plus, then you can make your own popcorn (in a healthy way) and drink your own drinks!
Buy in Bulk/Meal Prep
So, this one is a bit more difficult to calculate precisely but it really does work! We found that a lot of times when we went shopping we just got things we were out of (bread, milk, eggs) and didn’t actually buy food to make MEALS. So, when it came to meal time we either went to go buy more food or ate out as a more convenient alternative. Now, when we go shopping we check out the sales and coupons and see okay, what can we buy on sale now to have on hand for a meal(s) later? OR what can we buy in bulk that will last longer and doesn’t have a soon expiration date? By doing this, you’re saving money by not eating out and not buying things full price all the time. You’re being much more intentional with what you’re buying and I think that’s something to put into each genre of spending.
Budgeting a Certain Amount Each Month for Material Items
So, after we are all moved in and our decor is completely finished, we should not need to be buying things for the apartment! Besides that though, a girl can spend so much money on things like clothing, accessories, books, makeup, and more! So, I only want to allow myself $50 each month for items like that. If I don’t spend the whole amount, great, it gets put in my savings and not touched. If I spend the whole $50, I better make sure I need it. I also want to be way more intentional about “things” I have in my home. I only want to have things that are used and necessary. So, if I want to buy a shirt or necklace, I may have to donate an old one first to make room. This will make it MUCH more difficult to actually spend that money each month. We as humans have such a habit of hoarding things we haven’t used for over a year and I am really over it!
Tyler and I really sat down and thought of these with lots of intention and determination. It’s so important to save your money and identify ways that you’re wasting it. I wanted to provide you guys some budget templates to help you do the same! There is an excel one that is super easy to use with a lot of customizable options that allow it to generate equations for you! You can add colors to make it more personalized and pretty 🙂 I also wanted to add the option of a pretty template that you can write on as a more simple option! I hope you enjoy them and use them!