A lot of people think that saving money and budgeting means they have to make their own laundry detergent and eat only ramen noodles.
Now, while I congratulate those who can make almost anything from scratch and save a few bucks, that’s all it is a few bucks. This is not the most efficient thing to focus on at first. It’s also a good way to overwhelm a financial newbie.
First thing is first, Remove Unwanted Expenses from your Budget.
Next, determine what category you are spending the most on. I do this by using the Mint app. By going to the spending trends it will show you what category you are spending on from highest to lowest.
By attacking these in this order there is more opportunity to save the most with the least amount of work.
When I first started doing this my largest cost was my home. At the time I had a higher interest rate (5.5%). I refinanced at a lower rate and saved over a hundred dollars a month (and only had to do it once). This dropped my house to second place and now the dreaded food & dining is in first. Now I am working to save money on groceries to get more savings.
Don’t tell me what you value, show me your budget, and I’ll tell you what you value.
I like to do this every so often. I go down the list from top to bottom and see if there are any opportunities to save.
By doing this I have cut out cable, cut phone bill in half, lowered mortgage payment, and much more.
I first got this idea from Ramit Sethi at I Will Teach You to be Rich.