Excellent habits that cost-conscious people have
Cost-conscious people make managing money look so easy, but there’s a lot of thought behind it, and in most cases some excellent habits in place which allows them to make smarter decisions when shopping. Breaking habits and picking up new ones can be hard work, but if you’re trying to get into the habit of saving more money then it’s definitely something to try and stick to. As the saying goes, it takes 66 days to make a habit – so what are you waiting for?
Here are some excellent habits that all cost-conscious people do, which should help you as you try to form these money-saving habits for yourself.
- Only buy what you need
This seems like a simple concept, yet people are continually living beyond their means and buying things they don’t need using credit cards and getting themselves into debt. Try and consider the motivations for the purchase – do you really need it or just want it? How long will you use it for?
- Use a shopping list
If you’re guilty of going grocery shopping without a list or when you feel a bit peckish, you know the effect this has on your bill. Make a list before you shop, and eat too so that you’re less tempted to buy snacks on impulse. Plan your weekly meals out in advance so you know exactly what you have to get, and don’t be swayed by those supermarket offers of ‘3 for 2’ or ‘20% off’ unless it’s genuinely something you need.
- Create a weekly and monthly budget
Have you a budget? If not, you should really start one. It doesn’t have to be a complex system, but having a documented view of where your money is going might be an eye opener. Are you really spending £60 a month on coffees on your commute? Are those quick trips to the shop for milk costing you £10 a time? Your budget should set out the week and month in advance, so that you can plan around any special occasions or one-off purchases to plan for – a birthday dinner, a trip to the cinema as well as leaving some flexibility for spontaneity.
- Have a goal
One of the best habits of cost-conscious people is to have a goal in mind (or even visible – write it down and put it somewhere you can see) so that you have something to work towards when you start saving. It could be for a wedding, a holiday, or you might even be planning to save for your retirement. What will you be saving for?
- Curb impulse spending
If you’re guilty of impulse purchases one of the best habits to start doing is to practice delayed gratification. If you see something you want, leave it for 24 hours. If you still feel as strongly about it then go for it, but if the initial desire has faded then you probably don’t need it or want it as much as you thought.
- Consider alternatives
If you are committed to saving money then take a look at your biggest outgoings and consider where you could make some additional savings. It might be something extreme like moving house to save money on your rent, or even switching your car to a more affordable one with lower monthly payments and less running costs.
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