The new year may have just started, but it’s not too early to jump-start your finances and get them in better shape. One huge way you can increase your chances of making your money goals is to build the gap between your income and your expenses.
I shared some of my tips for making and saving more money last year and I have new ones I want to pass on. Read over both lists and pick out which ideas sound best for you and your situation.
Increasing Your Income in 2015
Now is the time to brainstorm ways to earn more money so you can use that extra income for your financial goals like paying down debt or investing more towards retirement.
- Master the art of negotiation. You may be the star performer on your team, but are you getting the pay you deserve? Close the gap by negotiating a raise for 2015. Don’t just go in your boss’ office and expect them to hand it over. Prepare, research, practice what you’re going to say and have a ballpark number you’re shooting for.
- Become a soccer referee. Spring and summer will be coming up before you know and with it, weekend soccer games. Each of those games will need referees to keep an eye out on the player and the game. It’s not a high paying job, but it’s a wonderful way to be outdoors and earn money.
- Become a crafty entrepreneur. My friend’s mother earned some money knitting cozy winter caps with the colors of the local colleges in the area. It was a wonderful way for her to unwind during the evenings and have some extra spending cash.
Saving Money in 2015
Depending on your situation, you may find it easier to hunt around your budget and find ways to slash your bills.
- Have a strategy with groceries and bulk shop. You can seriously cut back on your grocery bills and save some time over the month by buying the majority of your dry and long lasting goods in bulk. Bring along a friend and split the goods if you think bulk for you and your family is too much.
- Optimize your time and money with meal planning. It sounds too simple, but sitting down planning out your meals for the next week (or beyond) can help keep food expenses in check and reduce waste. I’ve had several friends who plan out their meals on the weekends and love it. You can also prepare your meals ahead of time and freeze them. They can be real lifesavers for those nights when you’re just too tired or busy to whip dinner from scratch.
Thoughts on Making and Saving Money in 2015
Do you have any other ideas or suggestions on how to get more money into your budget? What are your plans for the money you make and save?