If you are looking out for the best for Financial Success in a new year. Can you think of anything better than starting over? The new year always holds so much hope and promise. This could be the year you get good at managing your money. If you can’t wait to start making your money work for you, you need these money hacks for financial success.
I don’t know about you, but I probably like a new start more than I should. You can start over and have nothing to worry about. If you’re like me, you want this year to be the best one so far. And there are some things you can do with your money to start living your best life.
If you really want to take control of your money and get out of debt, these money-saving tips will make a huge difference. How do I know? Because I have done all of these things and still do them! By focusing on our goal to be debt-free, my husband and I have been able to put more than $130,000 toward paying off debt and cash-flowing our three children (oh ya, and a home renovation).
You can start going in the direction of the life you want. If you haven’t already, the first step will be to make a budget.
Top 12 Money Hacks for Financial Success to Help You Make More Money This Year
1. Keep track of what you spend
It might seem obvious, but I promise it’s not. My husband and I used to live every month in this cycle of freedom and panic. We’d get paid and spend like we had all the money in the world. When we ran out of money, we’d get scared and stop spending. It was awful to live that way.
So what stops this from going on? Keeping track of your money. It is an important part of making a budget. You need to know where your money is going before you can start to use it more wisely.
If you haven’t been keeping track of your spending, I promise it will open your eyes. AND you’ll feel like you’re finally in charge of your money.
2. Cut out cable
You’ve probably heard this one before, but really, cut the cable! Compared to other options, cable is so expensive. With just this one thing, we were able to cut our bill by almost $100. Really, there are a lot of other streaming services out there now.
Depending on your package, you can switch to Hulu with Live TV and not feel like you’re missing out on anything. Or you could use Netflix and save even more money! The best choice is the one that will save you the most money.
Stop overspending on entertainment. You don’t need cable in your life. If you feel like you have nothing left, just remember that not all of these changes have to last forever. They just need to be in place long enough for your finances to get better.
3. Cut up your credit cards
Some people don’t agree with this. People find it hard to break up with their old plastic friends because they won’t get rewards or have money on hand all the time.
What’s that? Your credit card is not “money in hand.” It’s really just debt you already have, and you don’t need more of that. How about an emergency fund instead of a credit card? It will be better than having a credit card.
The rewards you get are not worth the risk of carrying interest-building credit from month to month. It’s too risky to not pay off your credit card every month and let it put you in debt.
4. Sell some unused stuff
This is one of the best ways to make some extra money and see “stuff” in a different way. No matter who you are, there are things in your house that you don’t need but that someone else would want.
Selling some things will help you get rid of the clutter in your home, give you some extra cash, and give you a taste of what it’s like to simplify your life (hint: it feels AWESOME!). I’ve sold things on eBay and Facebook Marketplace, and it was easy to do both.
You never know what people are going to want to buy.
5. Stay within your budget by cutting your costs
This may seem like a no-brainer, but really. Look at your variable expenses (those that can be changed) in your monthly budget and try to get them as low as possible. These are things like food, toiletries, makeup, entertainment, clothes, etc.
This is one of the things about budgeting that is both fun and hard. These are some of the numbers you can change to make a big difference in how much money you have left over each month and how it works for you instead of against you.
Use hotel shampoo samples for a month instead of buying new shampoo, clean out your pantry instead of making that last trip to the store, skip a haircut for a month, switch to a cheaper brand of makeup, etc.
Start keeping track of where you spend your money and make it better. You decide where your money goes, so why not use it in the best way possible?
6. Take a “No Spend” weekend or month
A “No Spend” time is when you don’t spend anything other than your fixed costs. That is, you still pay your bills, but you don’t do anything else for the amount of time you chose.
If you’re new to this idea, I’d start with a week where you don’t buy anything and see how that goes. Then you can keep going from there. These can be hard to do, but think of them as a cleanse for your money. You will fast for a while to reset your mind and your bank account. Plus, you can save a lot of money during these times!
7. Start making plans for meals
This could be a challenge in and of itself for the whole year. For some of us, planning meals is like climbing this huge mountain. But it turns out that it doesn’t really have to be that hard.
I was able to cut my grocery budget for a family of four from $700-$800 per month to $250 per month. I didn’t do anything special except plan meals. It didn’t take much work on my part to plan out our meals and groceries. Since I’ve been doing it for a while, it’s no longer hard for me.
If you’ve never done this before, start with something simple and build from there. You can do it, and it will save you a lot of money.
8. Use a cash-back app to shop
You’ve been leaving money on the table if you haven’t been using cashback apps. Two of the best apps that give you cash back for buying things you were going to buy anyway are:
9. Pay off your debts
Feeling overwhelmed by this? Are you looking forward to this? You have come to the right place. Paying off debt is the best way to get your money to work for you instead of against you. How many payments do you make every month right now?
I understand the debt trap very well. I had debts of $500,000 that I had to pay off. The payments on my debts were more than my mortgage. It was bad! You don’t feel like you can do anything with your money.
Do you get the same feeling? Want something different?
This year is the time to get out of debt. Think about what you could do with your money if you didn’t have to give it to someone else. Once you have a budget, you can make a plan to pay off your debt and start moving toward a future where you don’t have to worry about money.
10. Set goals for your money
Setting goals is one of the most important things you can do to change your financial future. Setting money goals sounds like one of the most boring things you could do, but it’s actually one of the most important things you should do. Whether you’re just getting started with budgeting, trying to pay off debt, or trying to build wealth, you need to know where you want to be in a year.
I used to be one of those people who said, “This is the year I’ll pay off my debt. That is what I want.” But I soon realized that if I just wanted to pay off my debts in general, I didn’t really know what that meant. What was it that I was really trying to do?
Would getting rid of $10 in debt be as good as getting rid of $1,000? Heck no! If you want to improve your financial situation, you need to set specific financial goals.
11. Setup an emergency fund
If you really want to do better with your money this year, you have to have an emergency fund. If you don’t have a fund for emergencies, you’re not alone.
Less than 1 in 2 Americans has enough money saved to pay for an unexpected cost.
I used to be one of those people who didn’t have a fund for emergencies. But here’s the thing. There will always be a need for help. It will happen to everyone at some point, no matter who they are. In a short time, I went from never having an emergency to having three pretty big ones.
Once you have an emergency fund set up, the rest of your money will be more or less safe. If something comes up, you’ll have a separate stash of money to deal with it. This means your budget stays the same and you don’t have to worry too much because you’re ready.
Sounds good, doesn’t it?
12. Cancel subscriptions and memberships
Memberships can be great, but you should only get one if you can pay for it. You don’t have to join every group you can. Some of them can help you save money, but a lot of them force you to spend a certain amount of money with them every month.
As an example, let’s look at gym memberships:
A gym membership is not a necessity. A gym membership can cost anywhere from $10 to $50 per month. Instead of spending money on this convenience, you could work out at home or outside and save that money.
You can find a lot of workouts on YouTube, run outside, or do exercises at home. Again, this isn’t forever, so you can find a short-term way to stop going to the gym. The gym will still be there when you no longer need it.
Use this method for every membership you have. Is there something cheaper? Do you really need this membership right now to stay alive?
Use your imagination to save money now, and you can always join again later.
Conclusion on Money Hacks for Financial Success:
Changing your life in a big way can be hard at first, but that’s how it is with most things worth having. If you want to change your financial situation, you’ll have to do things that make you feel a little uneasy. You need to get out of your comfort zone and try something new because what you’ve been doing isn’t working.
Every year is a fresh start, which is a lot of fun. How serious are you about saving money and getting a handle on your money this year? If you can use these tricks to save money, you’ll be well on your way to saving a lot of money and getting your money to work for you.
Wishing you the best year yet!