What could possibly be more fun than paying for a mortgage each month? (All right, you can probably name quite a few things, but keeping a comfortable housing budget doesn’t always have to be painful, either.)
Cutting down on a few expenses elsewhere can help you save for your housing budget.
Eat In, Not Out
Eating out can provide a great convenience when you come home from a long work day and can’t muster up the motivation to make a meal. However, those quick, convenient indulgences can add up quickly and take a toll on your bank account. Instead of regular trips to your favorite restaurants, spend more time making meals at home. Making meals at home will give you more bang for your buck. You can find numerous quick and healthy recipes online with nearly effortless prep and cook times.
Take a moment to count how many subscription services you pay for. Services such as cable television, Hulu, Amazon Prime and the never-ending list of subscription boxes like Dollar Shave Club or Graze also take a toll on your overall budget. While the cost of each doesn’t seem like much individually, it piles up quickly, with many costing anywhere from $10 to $40 a month.
How often do you use cable TV? Enough to justify the price tag? Could you replace it with something cheaper or live without it all together? Give serious thought to which services you truly value, and part ways with whatever doesn’t make the list.
With fall and winter fast approaching, don’t be so quick to move the thermostat dial upward. Once the colder weather hits, keep your home at 68 degrees or a couple ticks lower. Doing so can make a noticeable impact on how much your save on your heating bills. Setting back your thermostat five degrees can save you 15 percent a day on your heating.
Throw on a sweatshirt or grab your favorite blanket and get comfy knowing the money you’re saving now will help you pay off the mortgage more quickly.
No, we don’t mean get an expensive gym membership, a personal trainer and bodybuilding supplements. This is all about buying in bulk—particularly non-perishable items, such as paper goods. Toilet paper, napkins, garbage bags, cleaning supplies and toiletries won’t go bad, and you know you’ll be using them. Buying such items in larger quantities can be cheaper, especially if you find them on sale. Now you can put more money toward mortgage payments in the future.
One more thing—don’t always reach for the brand-name supplies. Does name-brand soap really clean your hands any better than store-brand soap? If it does, it’s probably not enough to justify the extra cost. Put that money toward your home instead!
Sources: Madison Gas and Electric