I would like to start 2015 by making sure my family is financially comfortable in case of an emergency. I do not have a huge income by any means but we make do with what we have but if an emergency should happen to come up we would be in a world of hurt. So I want to try and save at least a months worth of bill payments and food money so if anything comes up we would be OK until we figured out a solution.
The first step is calculating how much you need to save. You want to cover:
- 1 months rent or mortgage
- 1 month of utilities
- 1 month transportation
- 1 month food
- a bit extra just in case
Those are the most important things to cover just in case you lose your job, are victim of an accident whether it be a fire, earthquake, flood, or robbery, or anything else makes a huge change in your life that alters your income or income potential. So add all of those things up and find out what is your savings goal? Just to be safe I am going to say $2000 is what we would need to stay a float for one month. Now to begin a saving plan.
There are some small steps you can take to begin saving and here are my favorites:
- Save all spare change at the end of the day in a jar (every bit counts)
- Take on any extra jobs you can (babysitting, overtime, dog walking)
- Do surveys on trusted survey sites ( I have an excellent article here)
- Sell any unused or unwanted valuables (gold goes for a pretty penny)
- Create a budget and stick to it!
- Begin meal planning.
- Cut back on anything that is unnecessary (extra cable channels, subscriptions, phone features)
- Begin conserving energy usage, water usage, and try portion control (save money when you cant cut the service or area completely) *Check my frugal tips page for ideas*
- Stop eating out, at least until you have met your savings goal.
- Look for inspiration and realize you can do it! Reading money saving books and websites during my free time really helps me to think of more ways I can save and reach my goals. It also helps time fly by when you feel like your never going to reach your goal. Reading is a great way to entertain yourself and save money and if you have kids you can begin teaching them how to help and begin their own savings goals.