There has never been a better time to prioritize your saving habits. The start of the year provides a great opportunity for you to take a good look at your finances, how you spend your money, and to give some thought to your future. Breaking down different areas of spending, like entertainment, transport, food, and so on, will give you a better sense of what you’re actually spending your money on. Transportation is a good place to start, considering we all need it to get to and from the places we need to go to each day. Let’s explore savings in this area, looking at some private care expenses to be mindful of, as well as considering some alternatives which could make a difference to your pockets.
Why Saving is a Good Idea
Saving is generally a good idea because we live in somewhat volatile economic times. With many countries facing uncertain political climates, and a lot of developed economies struggling to keep GDP at levels they were operating at in the past, the burden often falls on the consumer to help out, be it via taxation, or an increase in interest rates. What would happen if you lost your job? Or there was another unexpected expense, such as fixing a broken car? Saving for a “rainy day” is great because it provides you with peace of mind that you’ll have enough time to make another plan. Alternatively, if there is a specific place you want to visit or something you’d like to buy for your family, saving for it, rather than getting credit, is a smarter financial decision as a whole.
Your Budget: Consider Private Care and Other Expenses
Start by isolating your private care expenses, for example, the things you are spending money on day-to-day. While it makes sense not to skimp on all the things you enjoy, if there are some expenses in your budget that are “wants” rather than “needs”, it may help to cut back a little on these, as you attempt to start saving some money. The myth is that saving requires you to put half of your salary away, but this doesn’t have to be the case, and nor is it practical for a first-time saver or someone on a low-income, so why not start small? Speak to a financial adviser about a retirement annuity and the minimum contribution you can make. You can then increase it each year, as you earn more, or as you save more money privately.
Alternative Modes of Transport To Consider
While you’re going over your budget, working out your expenses and income, and deciding on where you can save, you should take a look at your transport costs too. If you’re paying off a new car, you may be paying a high rate of interest, sometimes double to the value of the car over the full term. Get some quotes from places to buy your car, as perhaps you can lessen the debt and then also consider an alternative, like the following:
- Bicycles are wonderful, as they are not only cheap to maintain, but they help you do some exercise too, which is good for your overall health, as well as better for the environment!
- Chat to your colleagues at work, especially those who live close to you, about a carpooling system. This not only helps you cut back on petrol costs but is also better for the environment too.
- Get a bus or train pass. While it may take some extra planning for you to start your morning and to catch these at set times, you may save a lot of money on car maintenance and fuel, as well as save yourself the morning stresses of crawling through traffic, and allow you some ‘me-time’ reading or listening to a podcast.
Saving money this year starts with making smaller decisions. By looking at your preferred mode of transportation, and making a few adjustments, you will not only have extra money left over at the end of the month, but you’ll be helping out the environment too, all while ensuring you are building a more stable future for yourself. It only takes one small step at a time, and by considering an alternative mode of transportation, you’re already a step in the right direction.