Saving Money Tips

Reader-Submitted Advice and Perspectives

This article on saving money tips was submitted by site visitor Betty D. of Miami, Florida.

Here are my perspectives on the three most common things people do that derail their personal budgeting goals. These were issues of mine and I thought I would share them to help others. Following are the things to avoid for better money management, as well as corresponding saving money tips for each.

Impulse Buying

This is by far one of the most common reasons why many of us get ourselves off track on our budget goals: buying something from the store on the spur of the moment, which we originally had no plans to buy in the first place.

We often pick it up because we either like how it looks or think we might need it now or in the near future. Or, it may just feel good to indulge and buy something extra. 

In most cases, the item just sits at home collecting dust. Or, even if we do end up using it occasionally, it is likely something we could have easily done without.

How to avoid this? Here are some saving money tips...

The moment you pick something up and have a strong urge to put it in your cart, hold off for just a moment. Think about what you are willing to compromise this month in order to be able to afford this item.

Many times the thought alone is sufficient to motivate you to put the item back on the shelf. If that didn't do the trick, then wait one day and come back tomorrow for it. Chances are you won't, as you come to the realization that the item is not the most important thing you need right now.

Also, always make a shopping list ahead of time. Then, take it with you to the store and only buy the items that are on the list. Once you put all your shopping-list items in your cart, head straight to the checkout line.

Add-on Warranties, Services and Protection Plans

These are among the things that people spend extra money on and they really shouldn't. Think about when you have bought electronics, tires or appliances. You were likely encouraged by the sales person or checkout clerk to spend a "few extra dollars" for an extended warranty or protection plan. Now think about how many times you actually used that service?

Nowadays, add-on protection plans and extended warranties are being sold for all types of items. They are profit generators for retailers. More often than not, you won't need them and should pass on the opportunity to be "up-sold."

How to avoid this? Here are some saving money tips...

As the sales person begins his or her spiel about how you will benefit with the purchase of that additional service, start shaking your head no, and say politely "No.. but thanks for asking." That should be the end of it.

Similarly, ignore all the offers you get in the mail after you make the purchase.

Here's a related tip: Go through your current phone and cable bills. See if there are any services that you hardly use, but got talked into buying when you placed your order. If you find something, call the company and request to cancel the add-on service and have your charges adjusted accordingly.

Skipping Breakfast

This may seem strange to think about in terms of money saving tips, but consider the following. With our busy routines and hectic schedules, breakfast is the first meal that seems to take the brunt. Skipping it is a bad idea, and not just for health reasons. Here is why:

When you skip breakfast, chances are you start getting hungry by 11 am. And soon, thoughts of lunch at that "nice place nearby" invariably pop into our heads. We may be able to resist a lot of things, but not craving for good food when hungry. And before we know it, off we go... and with that up to $20 we hadn't planned on spending.

How to avoid this? Here are some saving money tips...

It's easy. Have a healthy breakfast, everyday. Never skip it. By following this simple step, it gets much easier to control our belly urges at lunch time, and a home-packed lunch will satisfy at noon.

This brings up another point. Rather than eat out, pack your lunch. You'll save a lot of money. Also, cut out those sodas and switch to water. Not only is water better for you, but you'll spend less.

I hope you find these saving money tips helpful.

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