There is a big drive and promotion these days towards economizing, living responsibly, and living on less.
Lifestyle changes need to be made. We need to consider the following 5 things:
- Down size.
- Live within your means; spend less than you earn.
- Comparison shop.
- Ask yourself – do I NEED this, or WANT it.
- Learn to say NO to debt.
1. Downsize: ($1,000)
This could mean many things, such as your cell phone. The average cell-phone plan costs about $80 a month, a study recently released by Utility Consumers’ Action Network. How many cell phones are there in your household? You could save approximately $1,000 per phone per year. That is something to consider. I have a pre paid cell phone as I rarely use it and most of the time I forget to take it anyway. I have one for emergency if I am on a road trip on my bike otherwise my life is just fine without one.
2. Live within your means; spend less than you earn. ($9,000).
This could mean looking at your vehicle situation. AAA estimates that it costs $9,369 per year to own and operate a medium-sized sedan that is driven 15,000 miles annually. You could save at least $9,000 a year if you gave up one of your cars. Start sharing, using public transport, and cycle more often. If you are desperate to get your “head above water” and get out of debt, you will find a way to do without that vehicle.
3. Comparison shop » Students living at home vs College.
The average cost of student room and board at colleges and universities is about $9,000 per year. If a child lives at home and attends a local University or community college approximately $9,000 is what you will save on lodgings. Unfortunately these days kids graduate with so much debt they have to come and live with you after graduation. Going to a local University and living at home can reduce the debt and hopefully they can afford to move on after graduation.
4. Do we want it, Do we need it. ($1,800 per family)
According to some government reports, the average American family spends roughly $1,800 on shoes and clothing per year. Most of us have more clothes than we need. I am sure if we went a year without buying any clothes and wearing what we have we would find plenty to wear. Try it; you’re likely to save yourself more than $1,800 dollars a year.
5. Learn to Say No to Debt. ($2,000+)
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average US family spends $2,668 each year eating out. If you have a family of 4 or more the cost is far greater than $2,000 a year. Eat at home more. The plus to this is you will eat more healthy food, eat less, and as a result, you’ll have more energy. One word of advise is don’t eat in front of TV. Use this time to bond with the family. Find out what the kids are doing. Have a BBQ in the weekends instead of eating out. Eating out is also one of the major reasons why there is debt in the family.
These are only a few of the savings you can make, there are many more if you take the time to consider your lifestyle.
For more information: Simply Fantastic: Living Better On Less