I don’t have to be the one to tell you that there are two types of people. The penny pinchers who get a high off tracking every penny they can save and then there are the people who sit and wonder how that is even possible.
Penny pinchers always seem to have a budget that works for them, and they tend to always come in under budget each month.
Some people are just gifted with money management skills that shine. It’s like some kind of natural born talent. However, not all people who fall into this group and be automatically be great at managing money.
Some people have to start out and learn the hard way by being a part of group 2 before they can adequately manage their money.
This second group of people will pretty well do anything they can to avoid managing their money properly. (I was a part of this group.) Often times they even will cringe at the idea of having to manage their money responsibly. ( I hear that.)
This often is a result of lack of knowledge they have on the subject of money management.
Chances are if you are reading this post on personal finance tips my guess is you are a part of the vast majority of people who fall into group #2. And you are here because you want to change and you want to learn so you can solve your problem of money management.
You know I was in the second group at one time, probably in a similar situation to you. To sum it up I was scared to know the reality of my finances.
I would get my paycheck every two weeks and before I knew it, it would be all gone when I actually needed it to pay bills. It was a complete lack of responsibility, discipline and very bad spending habits that landed me in this situation. Heck, I didn’t even try to have a budget that’s how little knowledge I had with proper money management.
Luckily, for me, I was able to learn how to manage my money before it was far too late. I actually started this blog as a way to learn more and share my knowledge with others so that people like you can be successful at managing your money. I was even able to create a monthly budget that works for my husband and I. My goal is to save even more money than I thought would be possible so I don’t have to work near as much.
But my ultimate goal is for you to learn from my mistakes so you don’t have to make the same ones. I have compiled a list of over 25 money tips that are easy to use and quick to implement so you can be on the right financial path.
I know you are ready to make the necessary changes, you just have to prove it to yourself and start. Even small steps are better than none when it comes to reaching for the financial future you desire. Keep reading along for money tips to improve your personal finances.
This is a very long post so PIN it for later on Pinterest, you may want to look back on it again.
1. Determine Your Expenses First
If you want your budget to work you have to get familiar with it from the start. Stop, oppossing the idea and start embracing it. That means the first thing you should do when deciding to live by a budget is determine your cut and dry expenses. and then add in your less neceassary expenses if there is room for them.
2. Build Your Emergency Fund
I highly recommend that you alot a certain amoun in your budget to go towards building up your emergency funds and sinking funds. You don’t have to start with anything crazy just alot for what you can afford that may be $10, $25, or even $100 or more.
The only thing that is important is that you go ahead and get started on your emergency fund. You would not want to get caught in an emergency without one. Not having an emergency fund could even end up with you getting into debt or worse getting deeper in debt.
3. Don’t Get Discouraged
Your budget is not a miracle worker! It is going to take work and time for your budget to start working for you and turn around your finances.
If you are in a financial mess you know it took longer than a hot minute to get there so why shouldn’t it take longer to dig yourself out?
Be kind to yourself, and give yourself credit for making the nessessary changes in your life now. You reconized a problem and you are doing something to reverse it. Good on ya!
Stay encouraged not discouraged.
4. Debt Snowball Vs. Debt Avalanche
Personally I am working my own way out of debt and I have choosed to go with the debt snowball method. The reason being is I like to check things off of a list and being able to pay off my smaller debt first. I like to get things done and over with as fast as possible.
How the debt snowball method works is you pay off your smaller debts first while making minimum payment on your larger debts.
Debt #1 $328.89
Debt #2 $987.23
Debt #3 $2,622.12
Debt #4 $6,908.84
Debt #5 $7,753.28
In this senerio you would make minimum payments on debts #2, 3, 4, & 5 while paying all extra money to debt #1 until it is paid off. Next you would move on to debt #2 and put all extra money for the month towards it and only pay minimums to debts #3, 4 & 5.
If you are interested in how the debt avalanche method works then keep reading. With the debt avalanche you first tackle your debt with the highest interest rates. People love using this method to pay off their debt because you will end up paying less in interest charges. Which is great!
So, you first pay off your debt with the highest interest while making minimum payment on all other debts. Once your highest interest debt is paid you move on to the second highest and continue doing so until all your debt is paid.
Honestly, it does not matter which debt repayment method you choose as long as you are making steps towards becoming debt free.
5. Make a budget and have a plan for your money
I have already expressed how important it is that you know your monthly expenses if you are going to budget. But, what is the purpose of having a budget?
It is simple, you need to have a plan for your money. Especially if you are wanting to eliminate your debt and grow your savings and emergency fund.
Your budget is not about restricting how you spend your money it is more about making a plan for your money and working towards your goals. If you are saving for an epic vacation you’ve been waiting to go on then include your savings in your budget, or if you are wanting to start a family you can plan for the future by including that savings in your budget.
The point is it doesn’t matter where you are in your life, budgeting and having a plan for your money by means of a budget is the perfect way to take back control of your finances.
6. Be Willing to Adjust
You need to realize that your budget is not set in stone and you will need to be flexible and willing to adjust your budget as your needs and your life change over time.
If you have the expectations that you will stick to your budget each and every month without going over it is likely you will be sorely dissappointed. Of course you will want to stick to your budget but don’t get discourged if you go over or have unexpected expenses. Things happen and that is life.
Being flexible will help you not overeact or end up giving up on budgeting altogether because of a bad month. You should also make sure you are incrediably realistic with your expenses when you are creating your budget, this will help you adjust your budgeted when needed as your circumstances change.
If you have a budget in place but so far it has done nothing but fail, it is time to reevaluate so you can see where you are going wrong.
Whether your budget is failing because you can’t seem to commit to sticking to it or it is not up to date with your current expenses, either way, it is time to make some tweaks so your budget can flourish.
Generally, when you start setting up your budget you tend to be overly optimistic regarding your spending habits. I know this is true for me! I was budgeting for what I ideally wanted my spending to look like not what it really was or should have been.
This all points to the denial you may be in regarding where your money is being spent. It’s time to face your actual expenses by tracking them religiously so you can work with actual numbers when sitting down to create a powerful budget that WILL work for you. This way you will be well aware of the true amount of money you need for expenses each month.
When you decide to track your spending you will also gain clear insight into what your bad spending habits are.
Never think that your budget will be the same from month to month. You must adjust and revamp constantly so you can keep it up to date. If it is not up to date then there is no way your budget will ever be successful if it is not meeting the needs of your current financial situation.
7. Stay True To You
Don’t spread yourself to thin.
It can be easy when you start budgeting and are creating your budget to cut out expenses that you shouldn’t but that will only be detremental to your budget resulting in you going over budget and becoming fustrated.
So make sure you stay true to yourself and include all of your monthly expenses that you think you will spend money on each month.
Money Saving Tips
8. Commit To Saving Money
Stop being wisy washy. Make a commit to start your saving and follow through today.
There is no better time than now to start saving even if it is not as much as you want to put away every dollar adds up and can make a difference in the long run.
Put a note on your fridge or print off this money saving challenge sheet to help you stay on track with your savings goals.
9. Automate Your Savings
I can not stress enough how helpful automating my savings has been. Before I would just forget to transfer money into my saving when I got paid and there would end up being none left over to save at the end of the month.
But, now I have it set up with my bank to automatically transfer money into my saving account after each pay day. It has been a huge time saver and definately something I have never regretted doing. You can do as litle as $5 or as much as you would like.
The rate you build your saving is totally in your hands.
There are also a few ways you can even build your savings faster with money saving apps!
10. Remember Why You Are Saving
Make sure you write down your why!
You need to know your goal and keep it visible so you never forget what you are working for. You goal is what is going to keep you motivate to stick to your budget and continue saving money even if it is only minimal at first. Every single dollar you save counts towards your bigger goal.
11. Eliminate Bad Spending Habits
Keep things on the up and up and refuse to cheat on yourself, and by yourself I mean the goals you have set. You will have to stay tough on yourself and strong even when you are tempted to splurge and go over budget.
Your budget is your life line and you need to keep a tight hold of it.
You will have to put a stop to all bad spending habits that have previously gotten you into debt or into whatever financial crisis you are currently facing that is leaving you desperate for financial tips. The point is bad spending habits will need to be a thing of the past if you want to to save money and reach your financial goals.
12. Set Smaller Goals
Goals are great but sometimes we can get carried away. This is especially true when you are just starting to put your financial life together. We set goals that are large and overwhelming and truthfully feeling overwhelmed and stressed is not something you need to intensify when it comes to money.
So break your goals down, and set milestones that are achieveable. Once you set your goals then you can make an action plan and start chunking away at them. That is how you make real progress.
It also doesn’t hurt to celebrate your smaller goals as you reach them. In fact it is very helpful in keep you motivated.
13. Know Your Priorities
When it comes to your personal finances you must know your priorites and make sure you keep them, well, a priority in your life. One trick you can do is take a piece of paper and write down your priority expenses.
For example, one thing you could write down as a priority is self care expenses if that is important to you. Or if saving money for a certain special item or thing is a priority you must make sure that no matter what you are contibuting to your saving each month at a rate you are comfortable with.
And knowing what your priorities are is the only way you can make sure they stay a priority.
14. Save The Easy Way
We’ve talked about automating your savings but there are a few things you can do to add to your savings automation.
And one way is money saving or cash back apps.
A few of my favorites cash back apps are:
And my favorite round up savings apps are:
15. Live Within Your Means
Easier said then done I’ll admit. I’ve been guilty of this by self and am still quite literally paying for. Living beyond my means has resulted in a lot of debt that I am still climbing out of. Here are a few ways to help you save money and live within your means.
Save Money On Food
#1 Plan your meals – this means you wont be over spending on take out. One way you can make meal planning a breeze is by using $5 Meal Plan.
#2 Only shop with a list – if your goal is to live within your means then you will have to hold back the reins when it comes to grocery shopping and that means only shopping with a list and sticking to it. No last minute impulse grocery store purchase, so make sur eyou go on a full stomach so you aren’t tempted.
#3 Try meatless Mondays – its no secret that meat is expensive so why not opt for a meatless dish for dinner at least once a week or more if you’d like to really commit to saving money on food.
Spend Less On Utilities
#1 Slash your phone bill with Mint Mobile –
#2 Cancel your cable TV –
#3 Make it a point to use less energy –
#4 Invest in energy efficient appliances and products –
Do the research when it comes to replacing your appliances for new ones and find more energy efficient options. Over time replacing your appliances with ones that use less energy can significantly lower your energy costs.
If replacing your fridge in the near future is a no go for you or not in the budget, I recommend you consider getting a few energy efficient Amazon products. Here are 3 that I recommend for lowering your bills
- Smart Plug– Automatically switches things the items you are not using which makes saving money a breeze.
- Energy Efficient LED Light Bulbs– Saving money on electricity could be as simple as switching to energy efficient light bulbs
- Smart Thermostat– Did you know that as a homeowners you could save up to 23% per year on heating and cooling costs by making this almost effortless change? This could be the best money saving desicion you make all year!
16. Cut Your Monthly Expenses
This can be extremely hard to do especially if you end up realizing you have to elimintate some of the expenses you currently spend money on because you can’t actually afford them anymore.
In my case this meant no longer getting my nails done after having them done for 3 1/2 years straight. I did not want to do it but I knew I had to. That is just one of the many expenses I had to cut in order to meet by budget and stop over spending.
On way you could do this is by using Trim to help you save money on your non negotiatebl expeses such as your phone bill, cable tv, and internet service to name a few.
You can checkout Trim here.
17. Start Today – No Excuses
Today is better than tommorrow, next week, next month, and next year. Think of where you could already be 6 months from now when it comes to your financial goals?
Starting isn’t going to get easier over time so why not rip the band aid of and make the choice to get started today!
I know for myself I made my own fair share of excuses, and the thing is those excuses only made it harder to start in the long run.
18. It is ALL on you
Listen, this is going to be frank but some times thats what we need to get us moving in the right direction.
The sooner you realize it is on you to start living witin your means, its on your to get out of debt, its on you to start saving for the things you want the sooner you will get started. Nobody is going to save you and make your financial problems dissappear or start paying your way. You have to do it!
So do yourself a favor by motivating yourself and encouraging yourself to put an end to your bad money habits and make the changes that are necessary.
I know you can do it, because if I can ANYONE can!
19. The Joneses Are Flat Broke
Don’t bother keeping up with the Joneses because they aren’t even keeping up with themselves. They are in debt and flat broke so stop comparing yourself. Live comfortably with in your means.
It is worth it because you will have the peace of mind that you aren’t in debt and can actually afford the stuff you have and own it instead of having everthing you own on payments.
This is precisely why my husband and I are living in a 5th wheel and planning to continue living there while we build out house with cash.
20. Track Your Credit Score
You need credit, and you need to know your credit score. If you don’t monitor your credit how are you supposed to know if it suddendly decreases at no fault of your own and need to dispute a mark?
Or if you end up wanting to buy a house or go for a loan you will need to know you have credit before you apply.
Yes, knowing your credit score is so important and you may not be making it a priority yet, but you should be.
Keeping a close eye on your credit score gives you a financial benefit many people sweep aside. By doing so you will be able to have an idea of how potential lenders may see you, this will determine how reliable for loans or financing you are considered to be. This is especially important when you are working towards purchasing a house.
I use Equifax for my credit score tracking needs, and I highly recommend that you try it. You will be notified of any credit score changes immediately by e-mail.
21. A Large Income Doesn’t Mean Better
You could be making way more than you techinically need but still find yourself broke at the end of each and every month. Leaving you feeling stuck in a never ending paycheck to paycheck cycle.
Often the best thing to do in this situation is to take another look at your expeses and finances and readjust your priorities.
It is smart to reconize that just because you have a large income you shouldn’t be spending it and spreading yourself to thin financially each month. You should still live as if your are earning a smaller income.
Money Making Tips
22. Multiple Income Streams
Flipping – Do you have some unwanteed items around your house the you could turn into cash in your pocket?
There are many things you can do to fix up older items that you pick up for cheap and then resell for 5x the price you paid or more!
Learn from Rob and Melissa the creators of Flipper University all the tips and tricks you should know to make your flipping side hustel successful and profitable from the beginning. Here are the 5 steps you should take to start flpping today!
Rob and Melissa would be overjoyed to have you join their Flipper University! This is where they share everything they know and the strategies that made them $79K in 2019 for only working 10-15 hours a week!
If you have a knack for being creative and are curious about the opportunity to create printbles to sell on your own Shopify store you should checkout the 13 best printables to sell on Shopify. In my opinion this is a great side hustle that could end up turning into your new career very quickly.
It is a great idea for anyone wanting make a change and have more control and flexibility over your time.
23. Start A Money Making Blog
Many people are not aware that blogging is a perfectly legit way to make money online. It is by no means a scam and is not a get rich quick scheme. It take a lot of diliegent effort and learning and does not heppen overnight, however, you could change make a pretty decent income blogging.
Michelle from Making Sense of Cents makes over $50,000 a month with her blog through affiliate marketing alone! Never mind her course sales and ad revenue she earns on top of that!
You can learn all of Michelles affiliate marketing tips and trick in her course Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing.
Already to get started with your blog?
You can start for as low as $2.95/mo with SiteGround hosting! Click here to read my post on why SiteGround trumps Bluehost for hoting your blog.
While SiteGround is great for bloggers starting out and you will be able to make money using them WPX Hosting is the next step up, especially once you have built up an audience and are need to have faster page speed loading times.
24. Become A Freelancer
Become a virtual assistant
Become a pinterest virtual assistant
25. Make Money Fast
Cash Back Apps
BONUS Personal Finance Tips To Help You Succeed
26. Get Your Spouse On Board
If you want to be successful with your personal finances you must first get your spouse on board. Budgeting and saving will not work unless you work together with your spouse and have a common goal.
Think about it, if one of you are working hard to get out of debt and the other just keeps spending money showing no signs of slowing down, how is that going to affect your debt?
If you have a budget but aren’t on the same page and both committed to it, your budget will fail the first week.
When you are in a relationship with joint finances you have to work together.
Set aside a half-hour every week to go over your finances together, this will keep them fresh in both of your minds! Resulting in your finances remains a priority for the long haul and you both being heard regarding how you feel YOUR money should be spent.
It also allows each spouse to take responsibility for their bad spending habits.
27. Learn to live frugally and be content
Practice contentment and stop striving for things you can’t afford. It not wrong to want to better your circimstances if they are less than ideal. For example as you know my husband and I are living in a 5th wheel camper and at this time it is all we can really afford while paying off our debt.
But, that doesn’t mean it is wrong that we are wanting to start building our house and making a plan for a better place to live and raise kids than a holiday trailer. And while it does get incrediabley fustrating living in a holiday trailer we try to be as content and live as frugal as possible so that we can put more towards our house and get into it faster.
Complaining about our situation wouldn’t do any good, so we have made it a point to be content and live a frugal life.
28. Stick With What Works
Don’t fix a good thing. If something is working for you and your financial situation then leave it alone. That doesn’t mean you won’t have to eventually adjust things but if you have a good thing going keep on going
29. Don’t Compare Yourself To Others
This is probably one of the best things you can do for yourself and your family. You should only be concered about how you are doing with money and make it a priority to stay out of debt and not compare yourself to others and what they may have or the lifestyle they live.