This post was written by a great friend of mine out here in Atlantic Canada. The author is very experienced in living frugal to save money for investments. He has a well developed conservative portfolio built from a number of investment products and stocks.
How to save your first $100 in 15 steps
No savings? 15 Money tips for people that have no savings to make them richer in 2017:
1. To many, a car is necessary, but if you can rid yourself of car payments, gas, insurance, etc., you will save a huge chunk of your monthly income. Take the bus if possible, if able to walk, do so. You will save on money and get exercise. You might be able to say goodbye to monthly gym costs.
2. Share accommodation with others. As well, if the place you live is within walking distance to the grocery store and where you work, you will save not only money, but skip the stress of morning and evening traffic as well. Apartments are expensive and the cost of maintaining a house is huge. Consider renting a portion of your living space with others.
3. Buy the best food when it’s on special. Bread and other common staples are sometimes marked down as well as other items. Buy and freeze. Cook enough to make leftovers for another meal. Whatever you do, do not waste food and eat it up before it spoils. Stay away from takeout food as much as possible. Consider a movie night at your place instead of going out to eat and have guests bring one item of pop or chips, etc.
4. Shop secondhand shops for excellent clothing. It’s best to wash the items in hot water and dry on high heat to ensure everything is safe and clean. Common sense here.
5. Know the difference between want and need. If you can live without it, it’s a want. Try to go a whole month without buying a want. It’s easier than you think.
6. Washing clothes can be expensive. Use cold water whenever possible and cut back on the amount of laundry detergent you use if you just work in an office. Instead of buying Cling Free, wrap three small balls of aluminium foil and they can be used in the dryer instead.
7. Use your library for free dvds, books, computers. It is also a great way to be with other people if you are lonely or just want to get out of the house. Often you see a bunch of friends together at the library. It’s perfect for students and the elderly and best of all it does not cost you a penny.
8. Showering and bathing. Unless you are absolutely filthy, a small amount of shampoo and body soap will do the trick. Same as shaving cream. Just use a little but moisten the skin initially with warm water and if you can shave in the shower your face will be very moist. My dentist also told me just a small amount of toothpaste is enough. The size of a pea. Don’t waste it!
9. Do most of your cleaning with white vinegar, baking soda, and warm water. Check online for ways to use these three items to clean your house from top to bottom.
10. Don’t buy junk. Buy quality items and shop on Kijiji and online for free shipping and/or free delivery. Be kind and respectful when asking for anything that isn’t mentioned in the ad.
11. Learn to make your own peanut butter cookies with just three ingredients: peanut butter, sugar, and eggs.
12. Instead of taking your lover out to dinner for a romantic night, stay home instead. A warm bath with candles, a freshly made up bed, and a fireplace dvd playing can enhance any lover’s evening and it’s all free. A romantic massage can also be incredibly relaxing.
13. Almost without exception, bring your lunch to work. As well, make your own coffee at work if at all possible. It’s easy to spend $100 a month for a coffee or two a day if you buy them.
14. Fold a plain piece of paper in fours and make your own birthday card. No artistic ability is necessary and verses can be found online if you can’t think of something to write. Sign it. Give it to the recipient. The sad part of greeting cards is usually they are tossed in the garbage within days. If however you make your own they may be kept and appreciated! Stand out from the crowd!
15. Listen to music on YouTube. If you need to relax, listen to relaxation videos.
Put the money saved into a savings account and DO NOT TOUCH it! When it becomes a $100, buy mutual funds and keep buying them whenever you get another $100. Read up on investments, be wise, ask your bank manager for free advice on what you should do. You can also ask your bank to put a trusted friend or family member on the account as well so it takes two signatures to get the money out. Lastly, I know to many $100 isn’t a lot of money but to some people that have no savings at all then $10 is a lot of money. Learn about TFSAs, etc., and your local bank will be able to help you.