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Don’t you feel like we are always doing this . . . saving here, saving there, watching where and what we spend? But if you follow a few tips and tricks and plan your spending habits, you can find ways to save a few pennies . . .even dollars.
How To Save With Groceries:
- Don’t Grocery Shop Hungry – if you go grocery shopping on an empty stomach, you might end up buying more than what was on your grocery list. You feel hungry and everything looks soooo good.
- Make Your Own Breakfast – the cost of muffins and scones is kinda outrageous. Take it from me . . . $2.00 for a small scone is just outrageous. You could make a batch of homemade muffins and scones for a fraction of the cost, if you are like me and in a hurry every morning to get out of the house. If you make your own breakfast instead of buying it on the run, you could also be eating healthier. And that is just a bonus.
- Get A Points Card – these days there a lot of different points cards out there. I have a separate one for my groceries. I collect enough points to save on my grocery bills. It helps a lot. Sometimes I collect enough points where it takes care of a $100 grocery bill. That’s always awesome.
- Write It Down – when going grocery shopping make sure you write it down on a list. You will easily forget what you have to buy when you get to the grocery store. I know it’s happened to me. I even buy extra items because I didn’t realize that we already had it. If you buy extra, you run the chance of it sitting on the shelf or in the fridge getting stale or mouldy. Then you have to throw it out. That is such a waste of money.
- Coupons – are you a coupon collector. Why not? Every little bit helps. Check your newspapers for the coupons or check what brands are on sale this week. Maybe a different grocery store is having a sale where your usual grocery store you frequent is not. Where ever you can save, go for it.
- Costco – everyone needs a membership here. I know it’s a lot more product but you save so much more. I know you cannot find everything here but you can save and you get back. It might not feel like it when you get to the cash register but in the long run . . . You also accumulate dollar points. At the end of the year, you get a rebate cheque for a certain percentage of all the shopping you have done throughout the year.
How To Save on Other Shopping:
- Before A Purchase – ask yourself ” Do I really need it?” “Can i really afford it?”
- Gift Cards – many of us get gift cards for Christmas and birthdays. Make sure you take them with you when you go out to the mall. Check carefully when they expire, if they expire. So many cards go to waste because people don’t check when they expire. They give you enough time to use it. So go check right now. I’m sure you have one you could use. Now’s your chance.
- Insurance Company – yes it’s another cost but we need insurance for our home, for our vehicles, for our business. It’s for our protection. But you need to shop around until you get a reasonable quote for your needs. The right fit is out there. You just need to “shop around”.
HOW TO START SAVING
Living paycheque to paycheque is not a healthy lifestyle. Putting away a few dollars now can go a long way in the future. Make it a habit. By putting away a certain amount into a designated account, your savings can build up before you know it.
You can start by opening a savings account. Have your bank automatically withdraw 5% of your weekly payroll cheque into this new savings account. What’s the saying? Out of sight out of mind – right?
It could be as little as $50 per week. Whatever you think you could do without each month. This account can be used for a long-awaited trip you have been wanting to go on; or a home renovation or a new car.
There are also long-term investment accounts to open. You could start saving as little or as much as you could afford.
You could also invest in stocks and bonds. It could be a little daring and new. But start small. My 20 year old son started an investment account. It’s the time to start. It’s great if you can start as early in life as possible and watch your investment grow.
But in reality it’s never too late to start. My husband and started investing in mutual funds and TSFA and RRSP and very important to us . . . RESP (an education savings plan designed for your children’s’ post-secondary education)
When our children were born, we began investing in this RESP for our children’s future. We were very lucky we did. Universities and Colleges are very expensive. Every little bit helps. But it is surprising that, “According to a survey, only 53% of Canadian parents opened a RESP”.
First thing anyone should do before opening up any kind of savings or investment account, you should go talk to your a financial advisor at your bank. We found a wonderful advisor who has helped us a great deal and always has our best interest at heart.
Things To Look Into:
- Savings Account– deposit a certain amount into this savings account (that you will not touch) by having the bank automatically withdraw for ex: 5% of your paycheque or a straight amount … $50 per week.
- Mutual Funds
- Stocks and Bonds
- TFSA Account – most beneficial. It is a tax-free savings account.
- RRSP – a Registered Retirement Savings Plan. Beneficial because contributions are tax deductible.
- RESP – an education savings plan for your child’s post-secondary education
Before doing anything speak to a financial advisor at a local reputable bank. You should be on your way to saving for your first house, first car, or simply for your retirement. Start Now!!