Before continuing, you may want to catch the previous entry:
In the previous entry, I focused on small changes that you could make on a daily or a monthly basis that could save you significant money over time. Now I want to address larger savings that could be made. The key concept that is the hardest for Americans to learn is to delay gratification – you really don’t need it, at least not right now. The following is not rocket science, but it sure does make sense:
- Lose the brand new Chevy Tahoe.
You don’t need it, and it is killing your budget. How much would you save, if you sold the brand new car you don’t need, and bought a used car for cash? $200, $300, $500 per month? If you stick with a reliable brand, like Honda, a used car will be fairly low maintenance, and you will be able to eliminate the car payment. Also, with a used car, there is no need for additional insurance, just get basic liability, and save yourself $50-$100 a month in car insurance costs.
- Downgrade, or find a house that costs far less, and move.
Why do you need four bedrooms when it is only you and your wife? Why do you need to give each kid his own room? Make brothers share a room with a bunk bed, and sisters to share a bathroom. A sales price difference of just $25,000 on a house can save you $150+ per month. Check out Buying a HUD Home Part 1: How I Acquired 4 Homes in Under 2 Years and Buying a HUD Home Part 2: How I Acquired 4 Homes in Under 2 Years for help on getting a great deal on a HUD home.
- Consider looking for a job that provides better health insurance for your family.
Currently I get 80/20 health insurance coverage from my employer for about $100 per month. This covers my wife and myself. But I am currently working for a health care provider. You could get catastrophic insurance only, and save a lot of money per month.
- Most importantly, be Disciplined!!
Get a sheet of paper out, chart your expenses (or use my Free Home Budget Spreadsheet), see where you can make adjustments, and stick to them. Break the spending addiction! Challenge yourself to go just 2 days a week without spending a dime. Bring your lunch to work, cook a real meal at night, don’t buy from the vending machine, go to the park for entertainment, and stay off ebay!
Again, these ideas are not rocket science. But if you could grab on to just one of them, it could change your life. How much would an extra $500 a month be worth to you? How about $1000? Stop making excuses for why you have to spend the money, and start coming up with solutions that will save you money. Its all in your mind.
We, as Americans, are programmed from birth to spend, spend, spend. Everywhere we go are advertisements, trinkets, neat things to buy that will improve our quality of life. YEAH RIGHT! How many times have you bought that 100-in-one screwdriver, taken it home and played with it for a few minutes, put it in the toolbox in the garage, and never touched it again! Don’t you see? We have to change our perception of life, and what quality of life really means. Life is about God, and helping others. That is the reason for this blog, helping others…What do you want out of life?? A great car, house, and boat?…Or the opportunity to make a positive difference in the lives of others…
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