9 CREATIVE WAYS TO SAVE
From trending techniques and positive spending habits, to automatic transfers and everyday ideas, find out some creative ways to save your money.
May 23rd, 2018
By: Northern Credit Union
Whether you’re looking to save for a comfortable retirement or that slick new ATV you’ve had your eye on, we’ve got some helpful tips that’ll get you to your goal.
1. PUT YOUR SAVINGS ON AUTOPILOT
Saving is easy when you don’t even need to think about it, right? One simple way we can help is through automatic transfers to your savings. So, for example, we could help you set it up to send $100 from your chequing to your savings account each month. That way, it’s out of sight, out of mind…and after no time you’ll have a nice little nest egg.
2. DISTINGUISH WANTS FROM NEEDS
Next time you’re going to buy something, ask yourself if it’s really essential. Will it improve your life over the long term? Will the world come to an end if you don’t get it? Impulse buys like that $7 mocha-half-café-double-shot-frappuccino can really add up. If you’re serious about saving, you may have to make a few sacrifices.
3. SAVE YOUR FIVES
It’s a simple, trendy trick—just tuck away every $5 bill that enters your wallet at the end of the day. It’s a small enough amount that it shouldn’t make a significant impact day-to-day, but over the long term it can really add up. Once you’ve saved a little stack, drop it in your savings account and start earning interest.
4. KNOWING IS HALF THE BATTLE
Sometimes it’s hard to figure out where all your money’s going. But thanks to our Personal Financial Management Tools, you can keep track of your spending habits. Just log in to online banking, and you’ll be able to see all your transactions, organize them by category and identify areas where you might be overspending.
5. IF YOU’RE GOING TO SHOP, SHOP SMART!
With the internet, it’s never been easier to find deals, compare prices and shop smart. One good way to save is by shopping thrift stores or second-hand markets, like Kijiji or Craigslist. If you are buying new, try to use special offers or price tracking websites, like Red Flag Deals or Camel Camel Camel, to ensure you’re getting the best deal possible.
6. PUT YOUR MONEY WHERE YOUR MOUTH IS
No matter who you are, it’s probably safe to say that a lot of your money probably goes towards food. Well, it’s time to start feeding your savings account as well as your craving for delicious cuisine. Try to brown bag your lunch, drink more water, buy food in bulk, order in less and cook more. You’ll be surprised by how much you can save.
7. GIVE YOURSELF A TAX BREAK
Tax-Free Savings Accounts (TFSA) or Registered Retirement Savings Plans (RRSP) are other great ways to start saving because they offer unique tax benefits. With a TFSA, you can avoid capital gains taxes. Whereas an RRSP allows you to put off paying taxes until you cash out, hopefully in retirement when you’re in a much lower income bracket. Learn more about the difference between TFSAs and RRSPs with our Northern Financial Survival Guide.
8. HOME IS WHERE THE SAVINGS ARE
There are so many ways you can save money around the house. You could ‘cut the cable’ with less expensive alternatives like Netflix or Hulu. You could ease up on appliance use, like hanging up your clothes to dry instead of using the dryer. You could even attempt your own home improvement projects rather than paying someone else to do them for you.
9. START A SAVING COMPETITION
If you have a sibling or friend who’s looking to save, just like you, it can be fun to make a game out of it. You know—see who can save the most over a set period of time. Creating a little friendly competition can help you stick to your plan and reach your saving goal.
Saving is a lifelong process. The first step is to open a High Interest Savings Account. After that, the most important thing is to contribute consistently. Think of it as a healthy habit. After a while, you won’t even realize you’re doing it. Then, come retirement, you should have a nice little nest egg saved up to carry you through your golden years.