We?d all like to get a better hold of our money but, then again, we also love spending it. We have the basics of personal finance down (for the most part) but when it comes to the big items like retirement, investments, and funds, our brains go into static.
This post isn?t about those big items ? it?s about the low-effort decisions that save money because, let?s face it? these are ones you?ll actually do (and can do today).
Renegotiate on Student Loans
Many of us have student loans, so it?s worth a shot to call your student loan providers and ask if they would be willing to adjust the terms.
Go into the negotiation with as much knowledge of your loan terms so you can keep up with the customer service. Ask if terms can be changed based on your current economic situation so that payment dates may be shifted, rates adjusted, or if a settlement could be found so that you may pay off your loan in a shorter amount of time so that you save on interest. The call should only take 30 minutes. The worst they could say is no and you go about your business but if they say yes then you?ve just scored a great win in saving money.
Change the Entertainment Sources
Most of our entertainment comes from a handful of sources, such as television, computer, and our phones. In terms of the media entertainment, however, you?re probably paying too much for not a whole lot of choices.
You can save money and watch movies when you want if you change to an on-demand service, like the one offered through DirecTV. This way you get your media a-la-carte without having to pay for tons of channels you aren?t going to really use. A switch in media providers could cut your media bill from $100+ down below $50, which is hundreds saved each year.
Have a Meatless Day
Meatless Monday is a small movement that aims at reducing the overall consumption of meat by encouraging people to use Monday to cook meals that don?t have? meat. The concept is simple enough but where it really makes sense is when you factor in the cost of beef, pork, fish, and the others.
By choosing to eat without meat for a day you could save hundreds and the best part is that it?s not just salads ? there are tons of great vegetarian recipes you are sure to love. You?re additionally saving in the long run, too, because you?re eating healthier (even if it is just one day of the week).
Take the ?30 Day Challenge?
The favorite from this list has to be taking a ?30 day challenge? on spending.
In this concept all you need to do is sit on the idea of purchasing something you?ve wanted for thirty days and after that allotted time ? if you still want the item ? you can have it but it?s likely that you?ll find you won?t, which naturally saves you on making that impulse purchase.
It works because putting off the buying decision gives us time to mull over the purchase in a logical manner instead of buying into the hype and that needy feeling of having it right then and there. You may come to a conclusion it?s not needed or you?ve found a better deal so there is your savings.
Switch Cell Carriers
We all love our cell phones until the bill comes in ? especially if we go over out data caps.
You may be locked into a contract at this time so keep the following in mind. For those that are at the end of their contract or about to pick up a new phone do consider going with a pay-as-you-go carrier.
Yes, you may need to actually purchase your phone up-front (compared to it often being bundled into signing a 2 year agreement) but these phones are unlocked so you can pick and choose your carrier. Once you find your phone and assess the options you?ll easily start saving money because many of these pay-as-you-go plans are $30 a month or less.
Even though these items are low-effort they still have a great return on investment when you look at the long-term gain. A few hours of your time, today, can save you hundreds. They?re so easy that there isn?t an excuse not to do them so don?t just go onto the next article or jump over to Facebook? take action!