24 Jul 3 Ways to Save Money
Times are tough in today’s economy. Most people can barely afford to even buy a brick of cheese to grater onto their pasta much less afford to buy a new car. It’s becoming more and more important to save a higher percentage of your income to secure your families future. Opening a savings account at your local bank isn’t always the best way to save money. There are countless fees associated with owning a savings account and they get higher and higher each year. Simply moving money between accounts can cost a fee. Something as simple as going into a teller can cost you money not to mention monthly service and overdraft fees.
We don’t want to bank bash; they are a necessary evil. Some institutions offer free savings accounts if you maintain a certain dollar amount in the account at all times (Usually between $1000-$5000). But as a rookie saver it may be difficult to come up with such a large deposit, especially with all of your other expenses. If you’re going to go this route we recommend that you save enough money prior to opening the savings account to avoid the fees. You may think, “the fees are nominal” but when you’re saving money every dollar counts.
A smart and inexpensive way to save your money is to freeze it. Place a decent sum of money and a small but heavy object in a water freezer proof zip-lock bag and submerge it in a container filled with water. Place the container in the freezer and forget about it. It may sound silly, but waiting for a large brick of ice to defrost in the sink will deter you from spending your savings unnecessarily. Of course, this method isn’t the safest way to go about saving money due to the chance of being robbed but rarely do thieves look in the freezer for money or jewellery. If you don’t live alone, perhaps you’d rather try our next suggestion.
Instead of using a saving account try investing $50-$100 in a conspicuous, fire-proof safe. The trick is to keep it in a safe hiding place and not let anyone know that you have even purchased one. This method won’t work for everyone. If you live with room-mates, or less than trustworthy family members the safe could be stolen. Although, most thieves can’t break into a safe and others won’t want to be bothered with it. The upside is that technology has come a long way and some mid-range safe boxes come with GPS and are built with a bullet-proof material. Owning a safe won’t do the trick on it’s own though; saving money is all about commitment. We suggest dedicating at least 10% of every paycheck to your personal safety deposit box. Keep track of what goes in using your mobile device. If you don’t trust your environment, you can always move your money to a free savings account once you build up enough savings.
A safer way to save money without incurring large bank fees is investing in low risk stocks and/or bonds. There are many stocks that have steady returns with very low risk involved. If you are brand new to investing in stocks and bonds don’t worry, there are tonnes of free resources that can quickly bring you up to speed. If you’re not interested in reading educational articles about investing you can always find great information in video format on YouTube. Another suggestion is to try Investopedia for your investment education. They have an extensive library of videos that dumb-down even the most difficult investment concepts. Alternatively, your bank’s telephone banking specialist should be able to briefly explain the basics of investing in stocks and bonds; free of charge.