When managing your personal finances, you need to work smart to minimize expenditure as much as possible. You can easily achieve this in two ways; if you are a homeowner or intent to buy one, you can borrow against your home’s equity. This will save you the stress of going for a bank loan as you will already be sorted. You can also go the zero interest credit card way, in which you can transfer your balance to another card so that you do not have to pay interest on your credit card balance.
Hack #1: Borrow Against Your Home’s Equity
This hack is for homeowners, but it’s good for everyone to know about should you ever decide to buy a home.
How It Works: Instead of having the bank front you the money you need through a personal loan, you borrow against your home’s equity. (As a reminder, equity is the difference between the total of your mortgage and the appraised value of your home.)
Hack #2: Pay Down Debt Using a Zero Interest Credit Card
For this hack, you need either a respectable credit score in order to apply for a new card or an existing credit card with zero interest.
How It Works: The most insidious part of carrying a large balance on your card is the interest that you’re paying on that balance, which can be as much as 20%. With this hack, you’re making a balance transfer to another card to avoid paying that interest.
Using grocery list and coupons is a great way of cutting on cost when buying items especially for your domestic use. This is easy if you print and using the coupons you need to avoid buying additional items that are not necessary and further saving you on time when you get into the grocery as well.
It’s a simple strategy. Before you walk into a grocery store, make a list of the items you intend to buy there, and check online for any coupons that may be available for those items. Take a look at the Simple Dollar Coupon Finder for hundreds of daily coupons and coupon codes for grocery and pharmacy items. The trick is to make sure you’re only printing and using the coupons you need–don’t buy extra useless items just because they’re on sale. When you get to the grocery store, just stick to the list you made while you’re at the store. For every minute you spend making the list and checking for coupons outside of the store, you’ll save two or three minutes while you’re actually in the store because you’ll be heading directly to items you need and won’t spend any time wandering, so it’s actually a time saver.
Switch Light Bulbs from Incandescents to LEDs
Lately, I’ve been switching from incandescent light bulbs in our house to LEDs. The LEDs at the store are definitely more expensive up front, but the reduced energy use and much longer replacement cycle of LED bulbs make up the difference. LED bulbs last twenty times as long and use roughly 20% as much energy as incandescent bulbs.
This is a situation where a switch saves both time and money. It doesn’t take any longer to buy LED bulbs, but you’re only going to be buying and replacing them 5% as often as before. If you figure that buying and replacing a light bulb takes you five minutes all told, a single LED bulb purchase will save you about an hour and a half of buying and replacing bulbs over its lifespan.
When dealing with money, one has to be considerate of their expenditure to be able to save on the little money that may seem not to be so substantial, but can still make a big difference at the end of the day. Learning to refrain from unnecessary expenditure is one great way of life, for everyone indeed. Major on your financial well-being and minimize your expenditure on meals to be able to achieve set goals that should be prioritized above all.
Learning the art of saying no – No to going out, no to buying that thing, no to a time commitment, etc. Learning to say NO is huge, it’ll save you a lot of money and, more importantly, time so you can focus on the important things in life. Here are some great tips on how to learn the art of saying no.
Learn to prioritize your financial health above your wants – You can start by being intentional about your financial future (like setting goals) until your intentional actions become habits. Natalie from FinanceGirl shares how she intentional living can help you make better decisions and live with fewer regrets.
Learn to cook a few basic meals – Cooking from scratch is a great way to save money. Spaghetti & meatballs, grilled chicken and vegetables, whatever is both good and tasty (here are some places to find recipes). Have a few go-tos to impress friends, slim down your dining out budget, and slim down your waist. To kick this up to the next level, have a “signature dish” that you can make in your sleep and that is really good. (mine is Chicken Parm)