One of the most common financial goals people would have is their desire to save money. The benefits of having some funds stashed in a bank account or investments serve you well especially during emergencies. It is also one of the earliest financial lessons your parents would teach you as they hand you a piggy bank as a child.
As such, saving money is embedded in the financial blueprint of most households. It is quite impossible to talk about financial security and planning without looking at how to save money. Even when you are planning to buy big ticket items, the first thing you consider is how much you have saved for it. That is if you are not planning to charge the expense.
Even with big debt items such as a mortgage loan or even a car loan, you need to save money for it. This is because lenders would often require consumers to have an equity when they borrow money. You have to then save money to be able to put a down payment on that house or that car you needed. The challenging part for some consumers is trying to find out how to save with minimum wage.
According to the US Department of Labor, the District of Columbia at present has one of the highest minimum wages at $11.50/hour. There are movements around the country to further increase that to $15 an hour. Whatever your salary is, if you are getting minimum wage, there is a big chance that saving money could be a challenging decision for you
There are a few things you need to know when you plan to save but one thing is certain, earning minimum wage will make it a lot harder for you. That is if you compare it to people who could be earning more than just the minimum. If you are presently trying to make do with minimum wage, here are a few things to consider to help you save money.
Get out of debt
There are good points on why you would want to take on debt this year. You might be buying a house, or even starting a business venture. You might even be planning on going back to school to finish up a degree or even take post-graduate studies. All these can have a direct hand in helping you get a better chance for a bright future.
However, when you are earning minimum wage and you want to save money, you need to lower down and get out of debt first. What this does is it helps you re-allocate your limited funds allowing you to save money. If you have a credit card debt, pay it down first so you can use that amount to save up for more important things in your life.
Once you start hearing or reading about living life frugally, you might dismiss the idea right there and then. This is because you could be under the impression that it does not really work. The effort might not be worth the outcome. However, Businessinsider.com reveals that even the richest of the rich can be frugal. There are billionaires who still live in modest homes, does not dress to impress or even drives low key vehicles to work.
As you look at what you can do at home, you can start looking at your budget and take off from there. If you notice you have been eating out a lot at work, consider packing your lunch. This means you can buy food in bulk and batch cook at the same time. These two simple actions can already help you save money and keep you and your family eating great food in the process.
Why not consider parking the car and commuting to and from work. If possible, get a bike and use it for your daily commute. You get to save a lot on gas and parking and get a healthy exercise in the process. You can use the car when you have family trips or on weekends when you and your children go to the park or mall.
This is one of those expenses that would have an impact on your family when you have children and you are both working. Child care can put a strain on your finances especially if you do not qualify for a subsidy. And even if you do, there are some centers who are only able to accommodate limited slots for subsidized children due to slow reimbursements.
There are other parents who are considering to have one of them stay home and care for the kids. You might not even consider this because with the minimum wage you are getting, living on one income is unthinkable. However, you might be focusing too much on the funds you will lose and not consider the gains it will bring. This idea might seem like a budgeting mistake but consider the savings you get with one parent staying home. With that, you can also save money when you get to look for a part time job while taking care of the kids.
Sell unused items
If you have a few unused items around your house, it might be a good idea to simply sell them. You get to achieve two important things with this – de-clutter your house and earn money in the process. The first one lets you regain control over the space in your house. As it brings income as well, it can help you save and increase important funds as well.
Rent out unused space
If you happen to have some extra space in your house, one thing you can do is to have it rented out. An extra room or even an unused garage can bring in extra funds into your budget. You just have to check and make sure you have all legal requirements you need to have space rented out. It is also important to screen the people who will rent out space. The last thing you need inside your home are people with questionable character.
Side hustle and save money
The best way to get started with this is to look at the things you love doing and start from there. This helps you feel encouraged to actually follow through and earn from it compared to feeling being forced into it. If you love photography and actually have the gear to cover events, then advertise your services within your network.
You can also look at selling food, baked goodies or even handcrafted designs to augment your monthly income. When it comes to selling items, you need not plan on having a physical store. You can choose to have an online shop where people can easily buy your products as well as make payments on their purchases.
It is possible to save money even with minimum wage earnings. It might just be a little more challenging but it is doable. You just have to be focused and determined with the steps you need to take and not take on unnecessary debt. It is also important to have an idea where you will use the money you saved. It should go to further strengthening your finances and secure your future.