Thursday, February 10, 2011
Carefully keeping track of every dime and nickel you spend can be tiresome, and it's natural to sometimes fall victim to temptation. While it's OK to treat yourself within the confines of your budget, it is important to steer clear of places that will allow you to reach a binge-spending freefall. The following tips and tricks should be used to keep your frugal budget in check and fight the urge to spend:
· 30 Days and 30 Nights: If you feel the desire to splurge on something nice for yourself like new clothing or home decor, leave the store. Write down the name of the item, the store, the price and the date, and post it where it can be seen daily. If you still feel the same urge to purchase the item after thirty days, then consider buying it. Setting this rule for yourself will help you weed out some extraneous purchases.
· Pass on Plastic and Pay with Paper: If you are going to the mall, leave your credit cards and checkbook at home. It can be deceptively easy to spend more money than you should when paying with plastic. According to a Dunn & Bradstreet study, people spend 12-18% more when paying with a credit card. Paying with cash makes you more aware of the damage you're doing and will lead to smarter spending.
· Make it a Debt-Free Date: Sharing your goals, accomplishments and struggles with another person can help you with your finances. Discussing saving tips and techniques with a trusted friend can help you de-stress and stay motivated. Shopping with a friend or calling them to discuss big purchases can help keep each of you in line.
· Shine Those Old Shoes: Consider upgrading existing items before buying completely new versions. Instead of buying a brand new computer, take a look at adding RAM or getting a better video card. If you delay a computer purchase for just a year, you'll get a much better system for the same amount of money as today.
· Simplicity is the Ultimate Sophistication: Continue to keep up with those frugal lifestyle practices that are simple and easy to maintain: purchasing generic items, clipping coupons before heading to the grocery store, buying in bulk, enjoying free community entertainment, and using the library as a resource for free books, movies, and internet service.
by: Clarky Davis, The Debt Diva