Do you ever find yourself making excuses for not saving money? Well, you’re not the only one. You can just wait and hope that you’ll win the lottery soon but that’s probably not the best plan. When it comes to saving money or getting out of debt, it’s easy to come up with excuses and ignore your problems. Let’s be honest, we’ve all been tempted to drag out a reason why not to save at some point in our lives.
But the truth is that almost everyone, no matter how much they’re earning, can put aside some money for more difficult times. Burying your head in the sand will only make your money problems pile up and stress levels rise.
Here are the 5 most common excuses people make for not saving money, and some simple tips on how to rethink your spending habits this year.
“I will start saving in the future”
Many people put saving off just because they think they have plenty of time to save money later. Often because they expect to earn more as their career progresses. It’s a reasonable supposition but unfortunately, life doesn’t always go as planned. And it’s certainly not something to base your savings plan on. Just because you can spend every cent that you have doesn’t mean that you should do it. The truth is that you never know what is waiting around the next corner. So why put off something that you can do right now?
“Life is too expensive”
It might be true but regardless of how much things cost, in most cases, you still get to decide where your money goes. In order to start saving, you’ll probably have to sacrifice on buying unnecessary items.
Let’s take eating out for example. Doing it once or twice a week might seem harmless but you can save quite a bit by eating at home and taking lunch to work. So, prepare the meals yourself and watch the savings grow. Bring out the cookbooks that have been gathering dust on the shelf and test out some interesting recipes!
“I’m terrible with money”
This is probably one of the most frequently-heard excuses. By saying that they’re unable to manage money, people think it is fine to be careless. Well, actually it’s not. The only way you can make a change is by actually trying.
The key to better money management is budgeting. Having a monthly plan (and sticking to it) is important as it helps you stay focused and make smarter financial decisions. Start with writing out all your expenses for the upcoming month. Then break them up into specific subcategories, like food, rent, transport, etc. Always start with filling in the most important categories. Remember to have your plan ready at least a few days before a new month begins.
“I want to enjoy life”
Everyone deserves to have fun and spend some money on things they want. However, wasting it on something you cannot afford has consequences.
Some people think that saving means spending as little as possible and cutting out all the fun in life. That’s not completely true. What you want to do is find a healthy balance between enjoying the moment and taking care of the future. One option is to follow the 50-30-20 rule: spend 50% of your income on your needs, 30% on your wants, and leave 20% for savings. If you´re afraid you might fall into the spending trap, avoid paying by card. Instead, take out a certain amount of cash before you´re going somewhere.
“I don’t make enough money to start saving”
A lot of people attribute their lack of savings to limited earnings. It’s true that the bigger your income is, the easier it is to save. However, you should remember that saving isn’t about how much you earn but how much you put aside. So if you manage your money wisely, you can still save something every month regardless of your income.
A good tip is to use automatic saving. To be able to resist the temptation of spending all your money, keep the savings in a separate account. Almost every bank offers a possibility to set up auto-transfers between different bank accounts. So at the beginning of each month (ideally right after your payday), transfer some money to your savings account. If you stay on course, you will see big rewards over time!
No more excuses
We all need savings for various life’s surprises. Instead of coming up with different excuses, rethink your habits, start following a budget, and automate your savings. It’s the best way to protect yourself from unexpected financial difficulties.
So stop making excuses. Start making changes.