Saving money in this economy isn’t easy. Despite the picture perfect state of things that politicians like to paint, many of us are feeling the effects of our shrinking dollar. Whatever rosy forecast those at the top see is surely meant to benefit only a small group of the elite while the rest of us need to be creative to find unexpected ways to save money during uncertain times.
You never know what the future may bring especially with how our government is being run right now with tariffs and a possible recession. The company that you work for could be thinking of downsizing to stay afloat. More than ever, this is the time to start tightening your belt.
Most families have two salaries from both husband and wife to support their lifestyles. However, an unexpected way to save money, especially in uncertain times is to pretend that only one salary is coming in. Instead of both salaries being spent, reserve one of those monthly salaries for a special savings or investment account. Strive to live on one salary instead.
Buying less or doing without some small luxuries such as frequently dining out, clubbing, attending sports events, concerts, etc. that you normally did may require a period of adjustment. Consequently, you may often discover that you really aren’t as deprived as you thought. In the process, you can gain several advantages such as avoiding stress from extra bills for those purchases and clutter, more organization in your closet and home to strengthening your family. Spending time talking and enjoying simple activities together instead of separately is worth more for the health of your family than those few extra games or concerts you gave up.
When the economic indicators are predicting a recession, avoid carrying a stack of credit cards in your wallet that could possibly tempt you into overspending. As an alternative, hide them all but two from yourself in a safe place like a safe deposit box with your important papers like deeds, insurance, bonds, jewelry, etc. and use just one that gives you cash back for typical grocery shopping, hair cuts, pharmacies, etc. In addition, you can also can pay bills online with a credit card that can draw from your savings account. Of course, you need to carry a small reserve of money in your wallet for daily incidentals such as fast food, bus fare or parking.
Keep the second credit card handy for unexpected emergencies that require more money than you may have on hand or in your checking account or that card’s limit. After all, you may not have time or the capability to run to the bank when your car breaks down or during a home repair that leaves you without the ability to shower, etc. The important thing is remembering that this one credit card is solely for emergency use only and nothing else.
There are schools of thought that believe it is better to rely only on cash for basic needs. I disagree because using one credit card with a set limit gives you a running account when the bill arrives with your purchases. You can see exactly where your money from your budget is going when that monthly statement arrives unlike using cash. Cash is more work trying to remember each purchase or tallying up individual receipts.
Another benefit of using that one credit card that offers cash back is that you also can earn a little extra for buying some of the same things that you would be paying cash for anyway.
Using that one credit card also is more convenient than trusting that you have enough cash. Think how much money you would need to fill up your car’s gas tank and then shop for groceries. That wad of money you would need to bring with you would be thick. Furthermore, if you would run out of the money that you’re carrying, the fee of using a bank machine or just traveling to a branch of your bank could be out of your way and cost more than its worth.
Saving money is always a challenge, especially in this shaky economy. Fortunately, there is a simple solution. Test my method out of what I suggest here with my best ways to save money during uncertain times for yourself. Once you do, you’ll see what a difference my recommendations make to keep more money in your pocket.