By Ken McCormick
Vice President, Relationship Management

5 Ways to Start Saving Money

May 03, 2024

  • Helpful Tips
  • Savings Accounts
  • Banking

According to research done by Bankrate, as of December 2023, more than half of American adults would not pay for an emergency expense of $1,000 or more from their savings account. Whether you are saving for a new home or car or need a cushion for unexpected expenses, here are five ways to help you save more:

  1. Track your monthly spending. Do you know how much you spent on morning coffee last month? How about lunches? You will be surprised how quickly these expenses add up. Realizing you spent $50 at Starbucks last month might make you think twice about your morning latte. Could you make a cup of joe before you leave in the morning? Probably.  You plan to walk into Target for two things and walk out with seven. Does this common problem happen to you, too? Target loves impulse buys; your wallet does not. Make a list of every NEEDED item, and then create a mental checklist of everything you want to buy at the store. In 24 hours, if you are still thinking about impulse buying, go buy it. Chances are you don’t need that new shirt or serving plate, and creating this 24-hour hold on impulse spending will discourage these purchases. 
  2. Shop around for insurance, cable, and cellular companies. Before renewing your contracts, look around to find a better deal. Ask your current company to match your new quote if you find one. Companies will often cater to you as they won’t want to lose you as a customer. For the time cost of some phone calls, you could see additional monthly savings without changing a thing. Win-win!
  3. This also works for your mortgage. Refinancing is a great way to save money each month, and it only takes a few phone calls. Check out the current mortgage rates, then contact your original loan provider. Could they refinance you at a lower rate? It's worth looking into. 
  4. Give up those premium streaming channels or cable altogether. Are you spending more time on Netflix than on HBO? Let go of that additional monthly cost and hit Crackle or Tubi for free movie streaming. 
  5. Try something new! Do you go out to eat with your friends? Try a pot-luck dinner at your home for one month. It is more personal and cheaper for everyone. Like to see movies on the weekends? Look for free movie events around town. Summer movies in the park are very popular; pack a picnic and a blanket and enjoy the evening outside.

There are many simple ways to decrease your monthly spending, but the first step is realizing how much you spend. Keep records of your monthly expenditures to look for areas of improvement and see how much your budget-friendly changes are paying off. Realizing your new lifestyle saved you $300 last month will keep you engaged and excited about saving money. Good luck!