As a result of rising living expenses and persistent inflation, 64% of Canadians now live paycheck to paycheck. More than ever, we are struggling to make ends meet and are forced to modify our daily routines to survive.
Many people have struggled to invest, save money, or feel good about their financial condition. To put it mildly, trying to regain your financial confidence might feel daunting.
The good news is that you may now change some daily routines to save a lot of money or build a good credit score with a secured credit card in Canada over the year. This New Year is an excellent opportunity to start handling your finances differently.
SAVING MONEY: A CHALLENGE ACROSS ALL INCOME LEVELS
Saving money is difficult for people of all income levels. In 2023, it will be more important than ever to save money. The average savings rate has been falling since 2010, despite personal savings rates still rising.
The idea of saving money seems simple: Spend less than you earn. Save and invest the difference.
Why, then, do the majority of seniors struggle to save?
Said, there are three key reasons why it’s hard to save money:
Around age 7, our financial actions and habits start to develop. In Canada, there is a significant shortage of financial education. Therefore most individuals grow up with negative economic patterns.
Lack Of Setting Priorities
Only sometimes is learning how to break negative financial habits at the top of the list. According to one study’s findings, financial planning “is like a blend between a dentist appointment, math class, and marriage counseling.”
You Only Live Once (YOLO)
This abbreviation of the current day advises living in the now and not dwelling on the future. Some claim that this mentality, becoming increasingly popular, has persuaded a younger generation to spend more and conserve less.
Here are the top 14 personal finance hacks for 2023 and beyond, whether you need some sound New Year’s plans or want to improve your financial situation.
1. Automate Your Savings
Lack of consistency is one of the major mistakes people make when it comes to saving money. The majority of your money will stay in your current account, where you’re more inclined to spend it if you sometimes move a small amount to your savings account.
One of the finest things you can do is automate your savings for this reason. You might, for instance, program a transfer of 20% of your monthly income to automatically go into your savings account. It will enable you to save more money and limit your irresponsible spending.
Look for a high-interest savings account to get the most out of your funds. When you receive a great monthly return on your investment, saving significant sums of money becomes much more alluring. Additionally, depositing your money in a different account might encourage wise long-term saving practices.
2. Order Your Groceries Online
Consider purchasing your groceries online if you have trouble resisting the urge to make impulsive purchases at the grocery store. The benefit of buying groceries online is that you can estimate your costs before going through the checkout process.
In this manner, you may always take anything out of your basket if your shopping budget is exceeded.
By deciding to do their grocery orders online, folks I know have reduced their monthly shopping spending by several hundred dollars. Additionally, it will ultimately save you time and energy!
3. Always Bring A List When You Go To The Store
When you’re at the grocery shop, wandering aimlessly around every aisle is one of the quickest ways to exceed your budget. We’ve been known to enter a grocery shop without knowing what we needed and leave wondering what the heck occurred. We didn’t have a strategy. Therefore we wound up spending way too much money.
Always make sure you have a list before going to the grocery shop to prevent this from happening. Even better, take only the aisles you need to take and ignore the others. Stay on track with your list by avoiding the additional aisles.
4. Search For Free Entertainment
Does having fun cost money? It occasionally does!
Nobody lets you eat for free, and you have to pay to attend concerts. On the other hand, there are many cost-free entertainment options.
Consider attempting a month of no entertainment spending if you want to save more this year. See how much fun you can have without spending any money by setting a challenge for yourself.
To get you started, consider these top free entertainment suggestions:
- Take a yoga class on YouTube.
- Locate a Meet up group that is relevant to your interests.
- Enroll in free trials to evaluate the various streaming options.
- Play a game on a board or the daily crossword puzzle from the NY Times.
Keep everyone from telling you differently; there are many methods to accomplish so while still having fun.
5. Shop Online And Get Cashback
You might as well be paid when shopping online if you’re going to do it! Joining websites like Rakuten can allow you to receive cash back on regular purchases.
Therefore, join Rakuten before visiting Amazon or any other online retailer. A $10 bonus will also be applied to your account immediately when you make your first purchase!
One of the few applications available, Fetch Rewards, lets you earn gift cards by simply scanning receipts. One of my all-time favorite apps is this well-known and expanding one! Your points may be redeemed for gift cards to retailers like Target and Amazon.
6. Track Your Spending
When people don’t keep track of their costs, they can wind up spending more than they should. Every month, buying a few clothes, a takeaway meal, and a cup of coffee may soon add to significant and avoidable financial losses.
As a result, keeping a record of every dollar you spend is beneficial. You may accomplish this with many different programs; some individuals even prefer to maintain spreadsheets. But you may also monitor your spending by checking your bank account frequently.
Making better decisions can be aided by keeping track of your spending. For instance, if your weekly dining out budget is $50, you can strive to cut it to $30 or less.
You don’t have to stop buying the things you like; keep track of your expenditure and keep them within a reasonable range. You can increase your savings and make better financial decisions.
7. Stick To A Budget
Even though it may seem like a burden, creating a budget is one of the most effective ways to improve financial security. You could cut your weekly spending by $50 after cutting back by $10, resulting in a $600 annual savings.
You can now find various free applications to assist you with this, much like tracking your expenditures. You may establish boundaries for yourself and regularly adhere to them with budgeting applications like PocketGuard and Mint.
Start modestly when creating a budget; this is the most excellent strategy. You can learn how to budget by reducing your monthly spending each month. Budgeting will soon become second nature, and you may follow a weekly or even daily budget to reduce your spending and increase your savings.
8. Try A Side Hustle
One of the easiest and most effective strategies to improve your financial situation is to earn more money. But only some have the time to take on a second job or hunt for a new one.
Fortunately, you may increase your income without investing a lot of effort. Just engage in a side business during your free time. There are now many simple options to earn additional money in your spare time.
You could wish to start driving for Uber at night or work as a DoorDash delivery guy, for instance. You might also sell items online on sites like Amazon or eBay. If you have valuable abilities, you may even offer clients freelancing services.
9. Track The Progress You’re Making
If you’re a visual person, it could be challenging to stay motivated if all you’re doing is staring at spreadsheet numbers. Instead, keep a visual log of your development! To keep track of your savings, color in a page.
To keep track of your debt repayment progress, use a thermometer. The enjoyable aspect is observing your development over time. When you register for my Budgeting Basics Email Course, you may claim your free savings tracker or debt-free tracker and can use personal finance tips to make it happen.
10. Keep Your Budget Simple And Live On Less
An increasing number of individuals are adopting the minimalist lifestyle. Sincerity is damned; we understand why! To enjoy the benefits of living a simpler life, you don’t have to embrace full-blown minimalism.
Try living on less and keeping your budget simple. You won’t believe it, but you might even like it. You’ll be able to concentrate more on the main aspects of life (instead of all the goods you’re buying) if you live on less money.
11. 30-Day “Sleep On It” Rule
You NEED to attempt the 30-day rule if you’ve found something you want, but it’s a bit pricey, and you’re debating whether you should purchase it.
Essentially, it’s just allowing yourself some more time to “sleep on it” and consider if you need or desire whatever it is you will make an impulse purchase.
We frequently make impulsive purchases, which may make it difficult to manage our spending patterns. And when that happens, we find it increasingly difficult to save money, which we genuinely don’t want for you.
Therefore, the next time you find something you desire, add it to your “30 Days” list and check back one month later to see how you feel.
We’ve all had the feeling of making a purchase only to wonder, “Why the heck did I buy that?” a few weeks later. Put an end to that. Money is valuable.
12. Protect Your Savings From Inflation
High inflation rates continue to raise the price of necessities like food and transportation, but they may also deplete your savings. Learn more about inflation, including what causes it, how the government tries to manage it, and what you can do to stop it.
You may change your investing strategy or ask for a raise to keep up with escalating prices.
13. Limit Subscriptions
Have you observed a shift in business practices toward the subscription model?
You probably have more subscriptions set up than you even realize! It’s time to add up your subscriptions and print out your bank statement from the previous month.
Keep the ones you utilize and throw away the others. Keep in mind that you are squandering your money if you aren’t using it.
14. Eat At Home
Regarding eating at home, keep in mind that you can frequently make enough food for an entire week using the money you would have spent dining out.
You’ll save a load of money if you learn to prepare your favorite meals at home and make eating out an occasional pleasure rather than a habit.
Think creatively to find additional methods to save money in 2023.
Everyone has various spending patterns, so you probably have some unique situations that might inspire you to come up with additional methods to save.
You could also begin the process by keeping a record of your expenditures for a while. Finding the cause of your financial problems is much simpler if you are aware of where your money goes each month.
Even minor adjustments can have a significant impact!