What are Good Ways to Save Money in a Recession Driven Economy?
Whether you are concerned with your business finances or your personal finances, the recession has everyone concerned about the economy in one way or another. Even when it seems the cost of everything is on the rise and the value of it is on a steady decline, there are many ways you can save money during this recession driven economy.
The most important tip when it comes to saving money is to budget properly. It is necessary to seriously re-assess your cash flow. For personal finances, think about how you get to work. Is there a way to restructure your commute? Giving up the long lonely drive and expensive parking spot in the city for the train maybe save you more than you ever imagined. Not only will you discover extra savings on gas, but also on maintenance and wear and tear on your vehicle. Take a look at your eating habits also. The “Latte Factor” is a much talked about buzz word right now for a reason. Spending even $5 on a coffee and $10 to $20 on lunch or dinner each day during the week adds up to a significant amount over the course of a month. Eating out in general eats up a huge portion of your personal budget. Diligently scour for coupons, online codes, rebates and promotions to get the best price on food and simply prepare the majority of your meals at home. When nearly 30% of take home income in the United States is eaten up unnecessary expenses such as the above listed, it is easy to see how altering these habits can save you money during the recession and long afterwards.
There are other ways to save even more money during a recession driven economy. Now is the time to see if you qualify for refinancing to get a better interest rate on your mortgage. A lower rate can mean saving you hundreds of dollars in payments. You may also want to rethink costly home improvements. Even if you have the money set aside for a major remodel or addition, waiting it out and keeping the cash accessible may be the wisest move.
As far as your business is concerned, rethink the old way of doing business by looking for more cost effective means of meeting clients. If you used to have associates fly out for conferences and meetings, you had the flight expense and the cost of accommodations to consider. Investing in conferencing technology may save you money over the rising cost of business travel. You may also want to re-prioritize your company’s investments. It is also easy to adopt small cost saving measures in the office, such as programmable thermostats, proper insulation, recycling campaigns, and even using less office supplies. Even in fairly large companies, every dollar adds up.
There are countless small ways to save money for the home that people often overlook. In these times, people are relearning the art of haggling. Never be afraid to ask “Is that the best you can do?” whether it is at a yard sale or a large home improvement business. Also look around you for free resources and activities. The library was there before the recession. Explore the racks for that book you don’t want to spend $20 on, and most libraries now have movies for check out along with free internet use. Many museums and community centers offer free, if not low cost, activities, concerts, plays, classes and lectures. You may find opportunities for the entire family to do something together virtually for free.
Revaluate your true needs. Everything you buy is either a want or a need. It may take harsh economic times for people to really stop and think about the difference. Ask yourself before you buy clothes, technology items, or anything else whether or not it is a want or a need.
By taking these tips and really thinking about where each dollar goes, you will find it can be quite easy to save a little money even during these very hard economic times. You can look at these changes and tips as a real change in lifestyle and values just as much as change in how you spend. If yo adopt them as a lifestyle change, you may find you save more and more even after the economy recovers.