As a teenager it can be a really hard balance between buying things that you want and buying things that you need. There is gas… which you HAVE to buy and, there is clothes, coffee, etc. which you WANT to buy. It can be really frustrating when you find yourself running out of funds every month, even when you think that you had done a good job budgeting everything out.
I have found that all of the little purchases are the ones that add up! The things like coffee, clothes, movies, food, etc. Those are the purchases that you don’t see as a big deal but when they happen often that is when it can create an issue. There are steps that you can take to cut the amount of money you spend on these small things. Below I am going to give you some easy money-saving ideas… its up to you to put them to use!
1. Don’t go to Starbucks EVERYDAY. An average Starbucks drink costs around $4. Doesn’t seem like much, but, if you go 3-4 times a week that has already added up to almost $20! Instead, cut your Starbucks runs to maybe once or twice a week. You can make your own coffee at home… they sell the chai and other drinks in large bottles that will end up cheaper than a daily purchase at the store!
2.Buy what you need before what you want. If you know that you are going to need gas this week, don’t go out shopping. Wait until you have purchased everything you need and then if you have money leftover, TREAT yourself! That way you always have the necessary things and you won’t feel guilty about buying yourself something.
3.Eat at home. All of those food purchases will really start to add up. Instead of going out and getting food, try to make sure you have food at home. That way, you can cook yourself something (healthy) and not spend the money. Also, try to keep some snacks on hand if you know you tend to get hungry throughout the day… no vending machine purchases!
4. Keep your spending money with you. I have found that if I keep the amount of cash I know I can spend that month with me; I am less likely to go buy a bunch of stuff. When you use your card it may seem like you can sort of buy whatever you want. With cash you have that amount and then you are done.
All in all, just try to be smart with your money. Think about what you are buying and make sure it is worth it!