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3 Creative Ways to Save Money on a Tight Budget - Starting Today

3 Creative Ways to Save Money on a Tight Budget - Starting Today

It's a week till payday. But you really want that new PlayStation now. 

Then you look at your stack of bills and despair.

How in the world are you going to cover your bills and spend the weekend duking it out on Call of Duty? There has to be a way to save money so you can afford both.

Despair not, human. We've got you covered.

Here are a few ways to save money on a tight budget and still get the things you want.

1. Ways to Save Money on a Tight Budget: Give Up TV Streaming for a Month

Were you taught as a kid to save every penny you found on the street? How long did take to earn a few pounds this way? 

The little things add up over time. That maxim is equally true with debits as much as savings. 

The TV industry is pivoting big time right now. Following in the footsteps of Netflix, just about every network on the planet is creating their own streaming service.

If you want to watch all of your shows, you're going to need a deep pocket soon.

In fact, subscription service spending tripled in the last year from £18.49 per month on average at the end of 2017. That's over £60 a month. Then add on top of that a cable internet bill, and you're paying just as much like traditional cable services.

Imagine what you could do with an extra £60 a month. It's not a whole Playstation, but you're well on your way. 

2. Freeze Your Credit Card

Think back to grade school. Do you remember the three states of water? Solid, liquid, and vapour.

What does basic grade school chemistry have to do with saving money? Everything, we say!

The funny thing about ice is that it takes time to melt. And figuring out how long it takes for ice to melt is oddly complicated. But we do know that you'll end up waiting for ice to melt if you freeze something in the middle of it. 

You may have guessed that we're being literal at this point. 

If you struggle with spending, one way to keep yourself from overspending is literally freezing your credit card. 

Here's how to freeze your credit card:

  • Put it in a small ziplock baggy
  • Remove as much air from the bag as possible
  • Fill a large bowl with water
  • Place the credit card at the bottom of the bowl with the numbers face down
  • Place the whole deal in the freezer

Couldn't I Just Microwave the Bowl?

Most credit cards now have EMV chips in them. Add on top the little magnetic strip on the back. Now, ask yourself, "will these things survive the microwave?"

Have you ever accidentally placed something metal in the microwave? You get sparks and smoke. And if you left it in there long enough, you'd ruin your microwave.

So, if you placed the bowl of ice and credit card in the microwave, you'd see an interesting show. Your card might spark inside the ice. But that's an experiment we don't recommend you try with a current credit card.

How Does This Help Me Save Again?

You want to buy that PlayStation this instant. You want to jump on the network and play Call of Duty with your friends tonight. So, you grab your credit card and buy the machine and game immediately.

What do you have now? Over £500 of debt you probably can't afford right now.

The average APR on credit cards is 21.6%. Over an entire year, if you left that charge on your card, you'd end up paying £60 on the entire purchase. 

Keep making purchases you can't afford and it exponentially adds up. If you can keep yourself from making large purchases you can't afford, you'll save money on interest. This at least gives you some time to think about the purchase before making it.

3. Assign a Use for Every Pound

If you really want to scare yourself, actually look at where you spend your money. 

You may not realize how much you spend on lattes or beer. We can't say it enough. The little things add up.

If you assign every pound in your bank account a role, you'll see where you can tighten and save. This includes telling certain pounds to just sit there for a rainy day.

How Do You Assign a Use for Every Pound?

First, find a budgeting app. There are plenty of free ones out there including Mint. If you want to keep other people in your life on track, find a premium app that allows you to sync budgets between devices.

Next, pull up your account online. Go through it with a fine-toothed comb for the last three months. Figure out how much you spend categorically each month.

This means that you tally up how much you spend on groceries. Tally up your eating out expenses. 

If your eating-out expenses are more than your eating-in expenses, then it's time to re-assign those dollars. Slash your eating-out budget by half and then add 50% of those dollars to the grocery budget. 

The remaining dollars go elsewhere. If you're saving for something big, you can put it in savings. If you're underfunded in your bills, it can go there.

Budgeting is Freedom

Here's the thing. You might have thought before you started budgeting you couldn't afford that PlayStation. But once you budgeted every dollar, you saw where you could save.

Even if you can't afford it right now, you can allocate some money to it each month now that you've cut your eating–out budget or your coffee budget. 

If you're looking for ways to save money on a tight budget, look no further than your own spending habits. And once you've saved for that PlayStation, come find a great deal with BuyVia.