People have likely sought out money-saving tips since the first iteration of a monetary system in history. Yet thanks to this period of economic uncertainty which has been brought on by the novel coronavirus pandemic, incorporating these money-saving tips into our lives is more important than ever.
Those of us who are living in the United States are certainly getting some much-needed assistance from expanded unemployment benefits as well as the stimulus checks which have been going out for a number of weeks. However, these solutions have their limitations. The extra $600 a week which has been tacked onto unemployment during the COVID crisis expires on July 31st if it is not extended. And while a second stimulus check may be approved during the House’s vote on the Heroes Act, nothing is certain yet.
For the majority of Americans, this economic uncertainty means one thing: we need to be particularly frugal with our money for a while. If you are trying to navigate this economic slowdown but could use some extra money-saving tips, use this guide.
Tip #1: Remove Unnecessary ExpensesThis is a pretty intuitive tip, but it’s one that is easier said than done. When it comes down to it, few people are actually willing to sit down and take the time to locate all the expenses that they could cut out.
Forgotten subscriptions are a huge money drain for many people. Yet just a little extra effort can remove these unnecessary expenses for good. These days, there are a variety of subscription management applications that can make this process incredibly easy.
Oftentimes, we can save money where we would least expect to. For example, when you replace the fluid in your compressor, the vast majority of the fluid -- over 99% -- can be used again. Expanding your knowledge of these types of money-saving tips can really add up in the long run.
Tip #2: Increase Your 401k ContributionsThis one may sound a bit paradoxical; if we’re trying to save our money, why would we increase the amount that we’re investing? The answer is simple: right now it is an excellent time to buy.
At the first sign of a bear market, many investors run for the hills. This is understandable -- if you know that the market is going to be highly volatile for an extended period of time, you’re going to want to mitigate risk and keep your money out of it for a while. However, this is where that old investing adage, “Buy the dip,” comes into play.
If you are at or near the bottom of the market’s tumble, there is nowhere to go but up. Investors who bought stocks during the 2008/2009 recession enjoyed a decade-long bull run afterwards. All you need to do is take a look at the 10-year chart to see how powerful investing in the midst of an economic downturn can be.
Tip #3: Choose Long-Term SavingsThey say you have to spend money to make money -- often, you have to spend money to save money as well. This money-saving tip means that, when you have the choice between a cheap and a more expensive version of a given product, the more expensive one will often end up saving you money.
For example, you can throw a new roof on your house for a comparatively cheap price. However, a well-built, properly ventilated roof can last you over 20 years. If your cheaper roof has issues several times in that same span, you’re going to end up paying more money in the long run.
Even hefty purchases such as buying a 3D printer can end up saving you money. This is because these devices remove the need to buy any object that can be 3D printed. Instead, you just have to buy low-cost spools of 3D printing thread. This technology is constantly improving as well -- models such as the LulzBot 3D printing line can manufacture bridge segments that fit together without the need for any adhesive. While buying a 3D printer is not a common money-saving tip, it is an approach that can be highly effective.
This pandemic won’t last forever. If we stay diligent with our money-saving tips and tricks, we can come out of the crisis with a stable financial position.