You might be thinking that saving for a house, especially one in the Seattle market, is going to take more than a couple “little” steps. And you’re completely right! Saving for a home requires a carefully thought out financial plan of responsible saving and investing.
Let’s say you’re already on the right track in that area, but you’re looking for a few new ways to bump up your savings. These are a few easy steps you can take to get closer to your goal of home ownership.
Automate your savings
Set up automatic transfers to your savings account every payday. Automating the process makes it so that you never even think about saving that money, which means you don’t have a chance to spend it either!
Clean out your closet
All of us probably have some perfectly good clothing that we don’t wear hanging in our closets. Give yourself some extra space and earn a few bucks by selling your gently used pieces from the comfort of your own home. Poshmark, Vinted, Depop and Tradesy are just a few popular apps for reselling your wardrobe. The process couldn’t be easier, no more lugging your clothes to the local consignment store!
One of the biggest parts of saving money is getting yourself in the right mindset. It can be easy to spend frivolously when the media you consume is focused on the latest fashion, restaurants or entertainment that’s coming out. Instead, educate yourself on money matters by listening to podcasts or reading from our free personal finance library. Surrounding yourself with messages that encourage responsible money management will hopefully start to rub off and have a positive impact!
If your student loan payment is eating up your budget, you might want to think about refinancing. Refinancing your student loans can help you get a payment that works with your budget along with saving you money on interest over time. Once you have room in your budget you can allocate more toward saving for your down payment.
Unsubscribe from memberships you aren’t using
Do you really need to be paying for Hulu, Netflix and HBO Now? What about that gym membership you never use or the magazine subscription you never read? Take a good hard look at your memberships and unsubscribe from any that you’re not utilizing or aren’t a necessity. To save even more money see if there are any memberships that you can split with a friend!
Delete credit card info from online shopping
It’s all too easy to make an online purchase with just one click when your credit card info is saved right in the site. Deleting your info from auto-saving can not only protect you from potential site hacks, but it also forces you to physically type in your card number and take an extra moment to evaluate the purchase. You might decide that it’s not worth the effort to type in your info, which probably means it wasn’t a necessary purchase in the first place!
Bring lunch to work
This is such a simple tip but one that makes a huge impact. Bringing leftovers from home for lunch can help stretch your budget even farther. To see the real impact of this, try transferring the 5 or 10 bucks you would’ve spent on lunch into your savings account every time you bring lunch from home. You’ll soon see those small purchases can really add up fast!
Maximize your rewards
Anytime you make a purchase make sure you’re utilizing any cash back or rewards that you can. That means either using a credit card with cash back, signing up for store rewards programs or using a site like Ebates for discounts and cash back on online purchases. If you have to make a purchase anyway, do everything you can to make sure you’re getting rewarded for it.
Don’t spend your unexpected income
Whether it’s a bonus, commission, gift or your annual tax return, it can be tempting to treat yourself when you come into an unexpected windfall. Instead, commit to adding that extra income directly to your savings. You won’t miss it if you weren’t expecting it and it can be an easy way to bump up your savings.
Pick up a side hustle
These days there are plenty of apps out there designed to help you make a few extra bucks. Consider signing up to drive for Uber or Lyft, completing small tasks for TaskRabbit or even becoming a personal grocery shopper for Instacart. If you’re skilled in art you might want to sell your work through a platform like Etsy. All it takes is a few extra hours a week and you can send your earnings straight to your savings account.
If you’re looking for some bigger steps to take to get control over your finances and meet your money goals (like buying a house) feel free to get in contact with our team and get started today!