Saving is a daunting prospect for many. Saving is also characterised with cutting back on either essentials, or the more fun parts of lifestyle. As those numbers in a savings account or investment slowly increase, many would still agree that waiting is hardly exciting.
However, saving can be fun. Instead of seeing saving as a necessity, and a reason for enforced sacrifice, see saving as fun, or maybe even as a game of sorts. According to some finanacial experts and planners, here are seven ways to make saving money fun again – one for each day of the week:
Find a Savings Buddy
Find a friend who is also saving. Maybe you for share a similar budget and lifestyle and financial aims – maybe not. Ideally, though, they are a thriftier ever than you are. Support and encourage each other to save more, and to accomplish bigger savings plans and efforts. Together, do challenges occasionally such as the “Ten Pound Week,” where only £10 covers everything from food, drink, personal spending, entertainment and other expenses for a whole week. Anothercsuggestion is to have “Frugal Fridays” together, where you spend Friday night (or another night of the week) in together, with Netflix or similar.
This is a big one, suggested and cited by many financial planners. It is easy to (without realising) overspend whilst paying using a card. This is particularly so with credit cards, where massive bills can be racked up whilst the cardholder spends and spends, always thinking that they don’t have to pay until the bill arrives at the end of the month. Instead of always relying on card, try to withdraw a set, certain amount of cash each week instead. Stick to this budget for the whole week. Not only will this help to budget, but the discipline involved in sticking to that cash budget will useful. Further, paying with physical coins or banknotes will feel more “realistic” than using a card, which in turn can help in making sounder spending decisions.
Save in One Denomination
A rather unusual one, but decide on a denomination, either a coin or a banknote. Then deliberately do not spend that particular denomination of cash, but put it away in safe place. Every time you end up with that particular note or coin – do not spend it, but keep it safe. Do this every time you spend, and fairly quickly you will accumulate a lot in that particular denomination – all saved away. For example, if saving away all £1 coins, if on an average week you end up with £12 in £1 coins, then over a month that would add up to around nearly £50 saved away. It requires a bit of discipline – but can be fun, and you have the need to be creative when paying to avoid spending those coins or notes!
Buy Food Daily
The average UK household today wastes an astounding £470 per year in uneaten, rotting food. The best way to tackle this is to buy food and some groceries daily. Not only is the need to regularly throw and replace out of date food tackled – but significant savings can be made, especially when taking advantage of any discount deals. Shopping daily also gives plenty of opportunity to get creative in the kitchen as well.
Think small, to get big results. Start off by saving 1p on day one, then 2p on day two, 3p on day three and so on – until a year has elapsed, and Day 365 sees you stashing away £3.65. By the end of that year you will have stashed away £667.95. A small amount every day really will increase over time. In addition to being fun, this methods is a good kids’ introduction to saving as well.
Decorate your piggybanks, or the containers that you are putting your savings into. As such, you will be drawn to them to put coins and notes into them. An extension of this method is, if saving towards a particular goal, to conspicuously label, or even put images on, containers that you are using.
For example, if saving for a vacation to Berlin, label that jar with Berlin: 2017, and paste on images of the Brandenburg Gate, German food, the German flag and similar. That visual reminder will encourage you to save more toward that goal.
Use an incentive. Offer up a prize among friends or family for the person who can save the most at a set interval (month, quarter, etc). Ensure that they prize is something everyone can enjoy, so that all involved have a great incentive save.
With these and similar methods – saving need not be dull, and merely putting coins and notes into a drawer or a bank account. Saving can be a goal that is fun to work towards.