January is the perfect time to make new habits and switch up some lifestyle choices. While many people choose not to make any New Year’s resolutions because most resolutions don’t make it past Valentine’s Day. The key to a long-lasting resolution, though, is to pick something that’s small or easy enough to work into your daily life that you can stick to. For example, if you want to save money in 2019, pick one or two simple things to change up and challenge yourself to stick to them. Check out a previous blog for some energy efficiency tips to save some money on utilities, and read on for some more examples to get you started!
Most of the time stores will have the same item for cheaper in their brand. Sometimes it’s worth the extra money to get name-brand, but often you can’t tell the difference between the two except for the difference at the register. You can also check out online options like Brandless or Boxed that have created a business strategy around delivering cost-effective products straight to your door.
Make Coffee at Home
While your morning coffee run may not seem like much at the time, even if you only spend $3 on a regular black coffee on your way to work, that’s $15/week or $780/year. That little cup of caffeine can add up and take a toll on your monthly spend. An easy fix for that is to just make your coffee at home and put that extra money to something else! Your apartment community’s clubhouse may even have a coffee machine so you don’t even have to pay for the beans yourself.
Go Out Less
This is probably a no-brainer, but if you don’t go out as much you’ll spend less. Commit to cooking more or hosting friendly gatherings yourself instead of going out to eat or paying an arm and a leg for drinks at the local bar. Try your hand at meal planning and prepping your lunches for the week ahead of time, then Friday or Saturday plan a fun game night with your friends and have everyone bring their favorite beer, wine, or liquor and mixer. No need to pay for $12 drinks all night to have fun!
Choose Quality Over Quantity
It may seem counterproductive, but sometimes it is better to spend a little bit more money up front for the higher quality item. For example, if you’re able to spend the extra cash on the $130 running shoes instead of the $45 ones, you’ll most likely have to replace them less. The higher quality shoes may last you a year or more, whereas the cheaper ones will most likely need to be replaced every few months and you’ll end up paying more in the long run. While this doesn’t apply to all goods, do a bit of research on larger purchases and decide if the extra money will be worth it in the end.