F%C! Living Rich & Dying Broke.Jay-Z
This year I am focusing heavily on my finances. Money is a touchy subject for many people, and that’s because we are not good with it or don’t have a lot of it. I don’t remember either of my parents sitting down and having a real talk with me about money and how to manage it. I knew that they were good at budgeting, because we didn’t have a lot growing up, but we always made do. There was no real conversation about credit, investing, etc. Was that the same for you in your household growing up?
In college, I was offered so many credit cards, and guess what, I accepted them. I opened so many store cards with high-interest rates when I was in school with no job, and had to lean on my parents to help me pay the minimum payments. IRRESPONSIBLE. But you live, you learn and you grow up. I have learned on my own, how to make better financial decisions and have cleaned up my credit tremendously from my immature college days.
I wanted to share what I am doing this year to save my coins. Maybe we can have a conversation sharing
I work every weekend, that usually saves me from spending on the NYC social scene. What it doesn’t save me from is the crazy amount spent on breakfast and lunch in the city. So I have decided to meal prep and cut back on costs that way. It may seem like a small change, but that’s $10 saved on breakfast, and upwards of $15 on lunch, it adds up. Now I only get a protein shake for breakfast, cutting out my usual latte from Starbucks. Why not save money and get healthy at the same damn time LOL. The shake holds me down until lunch where I will eat what I have cooked. The plan is to do this for every weekend I work, so far this year I only bought lunch once.
I almost never have cash on me. But what I have found helps me save, is to take a certain amount of money out for the weekend so I don’t have to touch my debit card. This will help me pay for my smoothies, my metro-card etc. If I train myself into thinking the cash is the only money I have, I won’t be tempted to swipe my card. Maybe I can even leave the card at home, but I don’t want to chance that yet in case of emergency. When I am more disciplined in this new way of living maybe I can do that later on down the line.
Money saving apps. There are so many influencers on Instagram who are making money from apps like Dosh. Once you use your link to refer a friend, the app pays you $10 for everyone who downloads and links a card. That hasn’t worked for me, mainly because I haven’t pushed it enough. But I have downloaded an app called Digit. It uses an algorithm to analyze your spending habits and essentially saves for you based on said habits. It takes the perfect amount out of your account daily and adds it to a rainy day fund. You can also set goals for travel, credit cards, etc. I have a rainy day fund and a travel fund. It’s saving for you without you doing any of the work.
Pay those credit cards. I can gladly report to you that my credit is back in the 700 range. I have paid off all the credit debt I amassed from college. I only have one major card for emergencies and a Lowe’s card I opened when I purchased my home in 2013. You will never pay off a card if you are only making the minimum payment monthly. What I tried to do was take whatever the minimum payment was and pay three to four times that. If you are able to pay off the revolving balance as you use it, that’s even better. Credit is so fickle and I didn’t realize how important it was until it was jacked. Once I get my student loan debt down, and get rid of the two cards I have left, I will have more money to save monthly towards my travel goals.
We have already started teaching the boys about money. They will be equipped with more financial knowledge from an earlier age than I ever was. They both already have stock, gifted to them a couple years ago and will hopefully mature for their future. We don’t want them making the same mistakes we did! Are you guys working on any financial goals this year? Share your money saving tips below!