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How to Spend Money Wisely: 12 Hacks To Improve Your Habits

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“What’s the first thing that comes to mind when thinking of how you can improve your financial situation?”

Many people would say “spend less money.”

One way to do this is by buying something used. In fact, a study found that Americans buy 10% more new items than they did in 2008 because we have so many promotional offers available. Not only should you be trying to save some money on your purchases, but also cut all kinds of other expenses from your lifestyle and keep them at a minimum.

Usually, people spend more money than they need.

This can lead them to have less money saved or be able to afford the things they want.

However, with a few simple changes in your spending habits, you will be able to make more of what you earn and feel more satisfied.

In today’s world, it is easy to be overwhelmed by the amount of information available on how you should spend your money.

With more and more people struggling with their finances, I would like to share a few hacks that have helped me spend money wisely and simplify my life.

Also, I am going to include some simple money saving tips on how to spend less money! Do not get duped into buying things you did not plan on purchasing or spending more money than you needed to.

Learn how to spend money wisely by following these 10 hacks. Follow the advice to avoid wasting money on unnecessary purchases, improve your financial habits, and stop spending too much.

How to Spend Money Wisely

As you can see shortly, there are many ways to spend money wisely. Whether it be through saving, investing, or taking care of your health; with this article as a guide, you won’t have to worry about your money any longer.

This is meant to inspire people on how they can better manage their finances and live more efficiently, while still being able to get the things that they want.

Spending money wisely is a way of life, but it can be tough to know where exactly you should start.

Luckily for you, we will break down ten hacks for you to follow so that your money does not go to waste.

1. Pay Yourself First

You are probably wondering, why is saving money about how to spend money.

The first thing you should do to spend money wisely is to pay yourself first.

This could be saving for the future with an emergency fund, which can be used in case of emergencies or downturns in your financial situation. This can be done by contributing to a high-interest savings account and saving up to $1,000 or more for emergencies.

Or choose one of our money saving challenges to match your financial goals.

2. Take Care of You

You need to take care of your health, as that will improve the quality and longevity of your life.

Making wise choices on choosing quality food and healthcare may cost more money upfront, but in the long run, it will save you money on huge medical expenses.

You spend your money wisely by taking care of your health. Money spent on a gym membership, healthy food, and other medical expenses can save you even more money in the long run.

Many people love the idea of time freedom for this reason.

3. Invest in Your Future

One way to spend money wisely is by investing in your future. This might be done through a 401(k) or Roth IRA, which lets you invest pre-tax dollars and then withdraw them tax-free once you retire.

This can be a great way to save on taxes, but the money needs to stay invested for at least five years before you’re able to withdraw it without a penalty.

4. Choose Experiences

We live in a society that prizes material purchases and spending. Remember to prioritize experiences by getting outside. Not just for your health, but also on the mental and emotional levels, as well as the personal and even family levels.

Also, a plethora of benefits to spending money on experiences, not all materialism related.

Try to spend less on electronics and materialistic items that fill your home and more on experiences like travel or going out with friends.

This is a great way to spend time with your family and friends instead of buying things for them.

Related Reading: Overcome Gift Regret: Experience Gift Ideas That Do Not Go To Waste

5. Set Goals

Many of us, regardless of financial status, know that if we want to live on the right path without having our finances stress us out, then there are good habits to be followed.

Think about how much money you want to make in the next five years or ten years and make up how to get there.

Now, you need to line up your spending to make that happen.

Not sure how to set goals? Start here with making smart financial goals.

6. Budget

The next hack is to make a budget and stick to it, which will help you spend your money wisely by only spending what you have available in each category.

A budgeting strategy helps you develop better financial skills. These strategies are practiced in order to help prevent overspending and create a set spending plan for you.

Create a budget that includes all your expenses and then each time you get paid, put a little bit of your paycheck into each category.

7. Evaluate Your Spending

Oftentimes, we find ourselves buying items that are not necessary and just a waste of money. This hack is to evaluate what you’re spending your money on and think about whether or not you want to continue this habit.

For every purchase ask yourself if the item is worth it and what will happen if you don’t buy it.

By completing a no spend challenge, you will be amazed at the things you find out are not worth spending the money on.

8. Likeminded People

Next, you should try to spend less time with people who are going to make you feel bad about yourself.

This is a hard one but just think of the good things that will happen when you stop hanging out with people who make you feel bad.

If you are constantly around people you need to learn how to not spend money, then you will be battling upstream battle. Look for those who have the same mindset and are determined to spend money wisely.

9. Spend on Quality Over Quantity

The best way to buy quality items is to spend more money on them. Buying cheaper items has its risks, but over time it will lead to dissatisfaction with the product and waste of money.

If possible try to spend money on things that will last a long time and not just stuff like food or rent.

This concept of quality of quantity is not difficult to understand. For example, instead of owning 10 pairs of jeans that you think you need, you spend money on the two pairs of quality jeans that you love.

Because items are so cheap to pick up, it is easy to quickly fill our homes with quantity and excess stuff (plus we are spending more in the process). Instead, spend a little more and buy less of what you truly need or want.

10. Eat at Home

One way to save money is by cooking more at home and not going out to eat. You can also cut down on the amount of food you purchase, which will help you save a ton of money in the long run.

Instead of buying food that will go bad quickly or ruin your health, buy more expensive food. This way you are spending less money on the product but it is going to last longer and be better for you.

By spending money wisely, you must learn how to spend less money on food.

11. Use Tax-Advantaged Accounts

Specifically, I am talking about FSA or HSA, or dependent care FSA. This is when you set aside money each year for these purposes. Money goes into these accounts tax-free, so you are lowering your taxable income.

On how to spend FSA money, you must have the proper documentation on your plan. The same is true for how to spend HSA money.

The limits change each year on how much you can contribute to each of these plans, but the maximum you can spend tax-free is over $20,000 for a family.

This is a great trick to spend money wisely and lower the amount you owe in taxes. Just make sure to spend the amounts in the FSA each year!

12. Spend on things that add happiness to life

Personally, I have a hard time spending money. Period. This is something I am working on as we progress through our financial journey. Now, I look to spend money on ways that will improve our life or bring smiles to our faces.

Spend on things that add happiness to your life.

For example, if you’re happy with the new shoes you’ve just bought, then it’s worth spending money on them! If you love to travel, spend on travel. If you like reading fiction novels, spend on fiction novels.

Spend your money on things you enjoy and make the most of the disposable income you have.

How to Spend Money to Make Money

Picture of a hand grabbing cash to show how to spend money to make money.

One of the best ways to make money is to give back. However, it takes some money to make money, which is typically frustrating to those who constantly want to make more money per year.

By selling a product or service, you are supplying them with your knowledge, advice, and understanding. Another way is through investments. Investing, while not always profitable, has companies that adhere to companies of all kinds.

One of the best ways to spend money wisely is to invest in ways to make money.

There are plenty of ways to make money and start your own business.

Here is a great book to open you up to the idea of starting your own business and the freedom with money it can bring.

Here are great ways to make money on the side:

It is possible to make more money on your business than you make more money in your current job or career.

How to Spend Less Money

Picture of a family putting money into a savings jar with cash they have with learning how to spend less money.

Many of us spend too much on material items that are not actively used. This creates a situation where we have to make more purchases in order to get the same level of happiness.

The first step towards becoming frugal is deciding what you want out of your possessions, and then only buying those things which will provide you with this goal.

Here are 32 easy ways to do that!

  1. Shop at Discount Stores: You don’t have to go all out with your shopping if you’re looking for a way to save some money. There are plenty of stores that offer great deals and you can still find some really cute clothes.
  2. Find Online Deals: You can find deals online for just about anything. This is a great way to get the deals that you might not know about. There are so many websites out there dedicated to helping you find the best deals and coupons.
  3. Save Money on Your Cell Phone Bill: Just because the cell phone companies want to charge an arm and a leg for service doesn’t mean you have to. There are plenty of options out there where you can find great deals on your cell phone bill without having to break the bank.
  4. Call and Cancel Unnecessary Services: Do you really need to subscribe to cable? How about getting rid of your gym membership because you know that all the exercise won’t do anything for your weight. The truth is you don’t need a lot of these things that are costing you money. Also, try a free service like Trim or Billshark.
  5. Buy Generic Items: Do your shopping at the grocery store and buy generic items instead of brand names for most of your purchases.
  6. Buy in Bulk: Buy items like toilet paper, cleaning supplies, and other things in bulk to save on the cost of each individual item. This is more so for families who can buy food in bulk.
  7. Start Couponing: This is a great way to save money. I know it’s not the most enticing offer, but if you’re looking to save money then coupons can be your best friend. You can go online and find coupons for items that are on sale at your favorite store or you can get them in the Sunday paper.
  8. Use Public Transportation: This is a great way to save on gas and wear and tear on your car.
  9. Get Rid of the Car: If you live in an urban area, it might be worth getting rid of the car and using public transportation or just walking instead. Or become a single-car family.
  10. Carpooling: One of the biggest hacks that many people are unaware of is carpooling- which can save up to $1,000 per year.
  11. Rent Things: Whether it is a video, movie, or power tools to complete a project, renting will save you money.
  12. Use Less Electricity: Turning off lights and other electronics when they are not in use can really help!
  13. Eat Spaghetti: Eating pasta saves money and reduces your grocery bill.
  14. Use the Library: If you like to read, the library might be another alternative to buying books.
  15. Borrow Books: Borrowing books from the library or your friends is a great way to read for free!
  16. Use Online Promo Codes: Using promo codes or coupon codes on all of your online purchases will make a huge difference. Here is a great place to find promo codes and get money back on your purchases.
  17. Eat Out Less Often: Eating out less can save money!
  18. Eat Less Meat: Eating less meat will save on your grocery bill! There are so many wonderful delish meals made with beans!
  19. Buy Used: If you must buy something but don’t want to spend much, consider buying used versions of the items you need. Buying used products will save money and help the environment.
  20. Share with Friends: Sharing your belongings, like clothes or toys, can save you money.
  21. Ask for Help: When someone offers to help you do something it’s only polite to take them up on it.
  22. Find Used Clothing: Buying clothing used can save you a lot of money and help the environment!
  23. Downsize Your Hobby: It’s important to live within your means. If you have an expensive hobby it may be time to scale back on the expense or find a cheaper one.
  24. Need vs Want: Try not to spend money on things that are “needed” but not “wanted.”
  25. Avoid Impulse Spending: Try to plan before you buy anything- think about what you need, the price of items, and if it is worth buying.
  26. Plan Free Activities: Plan outings with friends and family, rather than going to the movies or restaurants alone.
  27. Plan For Expensive Times: Give your friends a heads up before you go out on an expensive outing so they know it’s coming. They may be able to help cover the cost or provide a cheaper alternative. This will help everyone’s budget.
  28. Do Your Research: Research all of your options before you make any purchase- this will allow you to get the best bang for your buck and find the best deals.
  29. Bartering: If you must buy something, but you don’t want to spend much money on it-consider bartering with someone or buying used items instead of new ones (e.g., clothes, furniture).
  30. Know-How You Spend Money: Keep a budget to track your spending and be aware of how much money you have left at the end of the day or week so you can plan accordingly.
  31. Negotiate on Price: If you plan to buy something, don’t tell the retailer how much money you have until after they give their price- this can help save money and time by eliminating any final price negotiations.
  32. Think Before You Spend: Put some thought into your purchases before you make them- this will help you make sure you really want to spend money.

How Much Money Should you Spend?

Picture of a blank paper, pen, and calculator to figure out how much money should you spend.

There is a lot of conflicting information on how much money should be allocated to needs vs. wants, but this takes into account what percentage of take-home pay should be spent on necessities.

Here is the Cents Plan Formula we Use at Money Bliss:

  • 50% to Basic Expenses
  • 20% to Savings
  • 10% to Giving
  • 20% to Fun Spending
  • 0% to Debt

So, the average person should spend 50% of their take-home pay towards needs. That means you must spend your money wisely.

Keep a list of what you spend and how much it cost.

You should have some idea of how much money you are able to spend on what. This will help you decide whether it is worth buying a thing or not before purchasing it.

Use the list to see where you can make adjustments, for example spending more time with your family or finding fun things to do with no money.

Ready to Start Spending Money Wisely?

Spending money wisely can seem complicated at times.

The key to using money wisely is understanding how you spend your cash. Spending tends to happen automatically, which can lead people down the path of overspending and debt if not monitored closely.

The affordability of happiness and satisfaction depends intensely on the money we have.

The activities we could do, and expenses we could cut out, can be often atrocious and insufficient for our expectations.

Extreme dissatisfaction and the whole time earning less than we would desire, we may feel that we need to know how to spend money wisely.

The vital hacks elaborated in this post will help to understand caring for a budget, and changing our habits to spend more wisely.

When spending money wisely, people should be aware of their habits so they can change them in order to save more and spend less on things that do not bring happiness or benefit the person’s life.

If you want to save money, spend it on something that will make your life better or more enjoyable.

Know someone else that needs this, too? Then, please share!!

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