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2004 Archives
Tax filing organization tips
Custodial Accounts
Saving on house energy bills
Cutting monthly expenses
Power of compounding
Online coupon shopping
Contributing to 401k's
Grocery shopping savings
Roth vs traditional IRA
Increasing your home's value
Dollar cost averaging
Setting financial goals

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with practical tips that you can use today to help your present and future finances!

 

Cutting Your Monthly or Recurring Bills
September 2004

Trimming your monthly or regularly recurring bills is a great way to find leaks in your family or personal budget. Even though some of these recurring costs may not seem like much, but when you add them all up, you may be surprised at how much more you could be saving if you started to cut your monthly expenses.

To get started, pull out about 3 months of your bank statements or if you don't have them (you should keep them to help analyze your budgeting progress) sit down and write down all of the monthly or recurring expenses that you have. I have listed some that come to mind and ways to help trim them.

  1. Do you have any magazine subscriptions that you don't need? You may have 3 magazine subscriptions costing you $200 a year.
  2. Heating and cooling bills. These can really balloon during the winter and summer months! Take steps to save on your utility bills.
  3. Home phone bills or cellular phone charges. Watch your long distance calls and try to limit your costs. Make calls in the evenings when they are cheaper or when your cell phone plan offers lower rates. Here is a great site to compare cell phone rates.
  4. Stop watching so much TV! Not only could you be doing more productive, fun things instead of sitting on the couch, you could trim your budget by eliminated your cable or satellite TV. If you can't do away with it completely (I can't!) get basic cable without the extra channels.
  5. Make sure your bank isn't charging monthly fees. If they are, call them to see if they will waive them. If not, switch to a bank that does not have these recurring charges.
  6. Don't miss your monthly bill payments. This is an often overlooked expense that can be monthly if you miss your bill payments on a regular basis. These fees can really add up! One missed payment on a credit card could mean $25 out of your pocket.
  7. Save on your grocery shopping. Buy store brands, clip coupons, sign up for the store discount cards to save on your grocery expenses. Oh, I found that if I don't shop with the kids, I save on my grocery bills because they work their damnedest to get what they want!
  8. Take a look at your car insurance costs. You could save a couple hundred dollars a year by shopping around for lower insurance rates. If you don't want to switch car insurance companies, see if you could change your premiums by changing your coverage. For example, you could lower your costs by having your deductible limit increased.
  9. Refinance your home. You could get some significant savings by refinancing your home with a lower interest rate. I saved the best for last! This could save you thousands and put more money in your pocket.

When you add these all up, how much will you save a year?

When I trimmed my recurring or monthly expenses I ended up saving over $5,000 a year!

Think of what that can do if you save and invest that year after year. The more you can wring out of your monthly expenses the easier it will be to achieve your financial goals.

Take the time to cut out the fat! Believe it or not, it felt good to cancel subscriptions and go through the paperwork maze of refinancing!

Are You Tired of Worrying About Money?

If you prefer to get really automate the budgeting process, consider Quicken. I have used Quicken for over 10 years and recommend it 100%. Click here to download and get started with Quicken Premier.

 

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Todays Tip!

I've saved thousands for my kids college fund without contributing one cent!

Click Here to Find Out How!