Connecticut Voice

Your LGBTQ+ Voice

The Savvy Saver

Girls at home celebrating Christmas and checking social media feed using smartphone

The Holidays are approaching and if you’re like me, you may be pulling your hair out thinking, “What do I get for Aunt Helen?” You would love to take her to the theater again, but tickets are TOO expensive! Heck, everything these days is TOO expensive. So,how do we manage our budget to afford the things that we want and the things that we need, like groceries? Here are some tips to incorporate into your daily habits to help give your bank account that extra padding.

  1. Beverages-coffee, tea, and WATER! Come on, if you’re not part of the end single use plastic bottle movement, get there! Stop paying $3/day for a bottle of water when tap water is FREE (in most cases). Get yourself a reliable and reusable water bottle, put a lemon in it and move on to savings as much as $84/month.

The amount that we spend on coffee and tea is just absurd, and we don’t even blink, we just pay it! That $6/day adds up to $2160/year. That is equivalent to a lot more shoes in your closet! Invest in an AMAZING system that will give you the perfect cup of coffee or tea and you’ll never want to pay $6 at the chain stores again. There will be an upfront expense, but it will have itself paid off in less than 6 months.

  1. Skip the Doordash. It’s so easy and tempting, and expensive! On average, you’re paying an extra $20 in delivery fees and tips. Cutting that out once a week can give you an extra savings of $80/month. If you’re not a cook, stop at the grocery store, pick up a prepared meal and enjoy that extra $960/year!
  2. Stop with the subscriptions, please! We are in the mindset where it’s okay to spend $39.99/month on whatever because “it’s ONLY $39.99/month!” There are many times we are not using what we are paying for. Ask yourself, “Do I need this or do I want this?” If you need it, spend it. If you want it, do you want it more than an extra $480/year in your bank account? Stop letting marketers lure you in with a low monthly price because that adds up to a big expense.
  3. Check for coupons before you check out. This actually works and can save you extra money on the items that you need. There are many times for which grocery stores will run a digital coupon on their app or a pharmacy will send an extra 25 percent off coupon via email.  Before checking out, check for coupons!
  4. Get your gas on Monday or Tuesday! We often find ourselves pulling into the nearest gas station when the low gas light comes on, and we just pay whatever the price is. Gas prices matter and where you get your gas from can add up to big savings.  Gas stations connected with grocery stores can offer savings of up to 40 cents/gallon. Gas prices tend to rise as it gets closer to the weekend, so pick a Monday or Tuesday each week to fill up at a store affiliated station and enjoy at least another $312/year in your bank account.

Incorporating these tips into your daily habits will surely help that bank account increase. It is always wise to be considerate with your savings and make your money work for you. Start thinking of using a high-yield savings account to earn a better interest rate. There is always a credit card offering a cash back option to put more money into your pocket. They are great for charging all your monthly expenses, paying off that credit card statement at the end of the month, and then collecting your cash back bonus…a bonus to enjoy on that new pair of shoes and Aunt Helen’s theater ticket.