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- Saving money can seem like an uphill battle, but there are actually several ways to do it that you’ll rarely even think about.
- Saving money is more about forming good habits than anything else, from where you spend money to how you think about it.
- Here are 14 ways to save money that are way easier than you’d think.
- Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.
Saving money can seem like an uphill battle, but there are actually several ways to do it that you’ll rarely even think about.
But you don’t have to go to great lengths to save money — there are several small changes you can make to your day-to-day life that will have a big impact on your bank account.
Saving money is more about forming good habits than anything else, from where you spend money to how you think about it. Simple fixes like cooking at home more, buying store-brand products, and keeping track of all your expenses can put you on the right track.
Here are 14 ways you can save money that are easier than you expect.
Buy store-brand products
Flickr / Walmart
Making small changes to your spending like buying only store-brand products may not seem like a big enough deal to matter, but a dollar or two here and there when you shop adds up in the long run.
This doesn’t mean you need to sacrifice quality — don’t buy cheaper paper towels for example, if you know you’ll have to use twice as many to clean up a mess.
But many store brand products, especially things like cereal, soda, and other packaged items, are exactly the same as their name brand products, just with different labels. Do some experimenting and see which products you can’t tell the difference between. You’ll probably be surprised at how many there are (and then you’ll be mad that you ever paid extra for a name brand).
Keep a money journal
It seems like too simple an idea to even work, but starting a money journal can really help you manage your spending.
Keep a small notebook on you to write down every purchase you make, or keep all of your receipts and write them down as soon as you get home. When you see where your money is going all laid out like that, it becomes far easier to keep yourself from spending on things you don’t need.
Sometimes only the guilt of knowing that you’ll need to write down an unnecessary purchase can keep you from making it.
Master the ‘wait for it’ rule
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Many people call it the "30 day rule," though that amount of time isn’t always practical. The general idea is: Wait a pre-specified amount of time before making a purchase to be sure you really want the thing that you want.
Thirty days is a good rule of thumb before you make any big purchase, like a stereo, a new TV, or new furniture. A couple of days to a week might be a better rule of thumb for smaller purchases, like collectible items or clothes. You’ll probably find that after you wait, a lot of the things you thought you wanted don’t seem as attractive to you anymore.
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