Often, people think that focusing on small ways to save money will add up to big bucks—like choosing no-name labels vs. brand names at the supermarket. It’s true that those kinds of smaller actions will help, but in the big picture, they likely won’t amount to much. Try these tips instead for real impact.
- Think big. Devote your attention to reducing big-ticket monthly expenses. For example, if you’ve built up equity in your home, you could potentially refinance your mortgage to pay less each month. You could also work with an insurance specialist to determine if your homeowners, auto and/or life insurance premiums could be lower.
- Resist lifestyle inflation. If you’re due for a promotion or bonus in 2019, you might be seeing hundreds (or even thousands!) of dollars in extra income. If you don’t need that income for living expenses, save or invest the extra cash flow to get you closer to your values and goals.
- Repeat on a monthly basis. Dedicate extra time to review other major monthly expenses, such as cable, Internet and cell phone bills, to see how else you could be saving money. Sometimes it’s as simple as calling your provider and asking if there’s a better plan given your habits and usage.
Chris Okada is an associate financial advisor at Woodbury’s Wealth Enhancement Group. He writes about personal finance and economics, and lives with his wife Michelle and sons MJ and Ty in Woodbury.