With New Years around the corner, I’m getting excited about all of my resolutions. Just like most people, I tend to set resolutions and then I’ve broken them by January. Not this time though. I’ve already committed to some pretty big financial goals, which is why I’m setting myself up for success now. By having the systems and plans in place, I can automate my finances and I won’t need to think about how to make it happen in the New Year.
Here’s what I’ve done so far:
Checking my subscriptions and utilities
Netflix, BoxyCharm, you name it, I’ve probably got it. But how often do you really use all those subscriptions? If you’re anything like me, you probably have a bunch that you’re just automatically paying for, and that money could be going toward saving for something worthwhile- like that beach vacation you’ve been desperate for.
Utilities are another big one. For most people, it’s easy to get locked into a plan with your provider, even if they’re no longer offering the best deal. By comparing your options, you can end up paying way less, for a much better and more relevant service. For your phone bill, you may be paying for a monthly contract that makes no sense based on how much you actually use it (free wifi anyone?) or the types of services you use. That’s why it may be a good idea to compare SIM only deals instead. With these deals, you can end up paying a fraction of the price. Love unlimited data? You’ll love the Giffgaff Goodybag Always On for £25. Travel a lot but don’t need unlimited data? The 3 Mobile Advanced SIM gives you 8GB of data, along with global roaming. Now that’s a good deal.
Choose what you want to spend money on
How often do you purchase something and then immediately feel guilty because you know you don’t technically have the money to buy it? Now’s the time to create a priority list. For me, I’ve just moved to a new city, so my priority list is all about socialization. I don’t mind taking public transport or wearing last season’s clothes, but I’m going to spend on things like drinks with new friends or Sunday brunch. Once you know where you want your money to go, you can make allowances for it and cut the guilt. It feels good, trust me.
Use that budget
How often have you created a budget but never used it? I’m so guilty of this. Now, I’m finding that budgeting is easier than ever since so many apps connect to my bank accounts and make it easy for me to see where my money is going. When you create your budget, dedicate 50% for living costs like rent, utilities, and food, 10% towards retirement, 10% for your personal savings, and feel free to spend the rest according to your priority list. As long as you’ve already put your money where it needs to go, you can spend guilt-free.