When I save money without a budget I save quickly. The trick to how to save money without a budget is about being consistent in what you put away and careful with how you spend.
I have also never been good at budgeting. When I sit down to do it, it takes a long time and I get confused. Our expenses also change consistently. I don’t find motivation to rewrite the budget often. Maybe I’m lazy. Shrug.
But what I do works for me. Here are my tips on how to save money without a budget.
My Original Inspiration To Save
I originally got inspired by a book called The Richest Man In Babylon. It’s pretty short. I actually listened to the whole thing for free on YouTube. You can check it out here.
Here are the major tips from the book I practiced to save money without a budget.
- Pay yourself first. Before paying bills, put money in savings. The book suggests 10%, so we did 20% (10 for me, 10 for hubs). 10% is sufficient. It’s amazing how we never missed the money when we made it a priority.
- ProTip: Not in this book… but from Dave Ramsey- tithe. Make that 10% your top priority and savings your second.
- Pay off debt. Don’t spend finances on interest rates. If you want to save money without a budget, don’t be in the hole throwing funds away.
- Make your money work for you. This can be in the form of investing or a high interest savings account.
- ProTip: I don’t recommend credit cards. Ever. Including cash back ones. Credit is based off of the premise that you have to go into debt to pay it back. First off, I always start off with good intentions, paying immediately after using. But they always get me eventually.
- Secondly no rich person will ever tell you the key to their success was a point based credit card. Not gonna happen.
Additional Tips To Save Money Without A Budget
Use All Groceries Before Shopping
Don’t collect groceries. Use what you have. Don’t ever put yourself in a position to throw away something expired. If you forget what you have or end up with excess duplicates, take an inventory. Know what you have and force yourself to empty the fridge before shopping again. Get creative to use up those pantry items that have been there forever.
Stay Away From Sales
If it’s an item that was already on your list, great. Buying something on sale that wasn’t already in your plans isn’t actually saving money. Just because it’s discounted doesn’t mean it’s a good idea. If your spending money you hadn’t planned to, it’s not “saving money”.
Reuse And Recycle
Rinse plastic and reuse before purchasing more. For example, I usually don’t use a straw just one time. Use glass spaghetti sauce jars to drink from. We save a lot of would-be waste for crafts. Get creative with reuse to save money without a budget.
Save On Utility Bills
Turn off the lights. Even electronic devices that are shut off pull some power, so if possible unplug larger electronics when not in use. Save on water. Hand wash dishes. Don’t sit in the shower for an hour three times a week. Be frugal with gas. Carpool if you can.
Minimize Monthly Expenses
Maybe you have Netflix, Hulu and HBO on demand and you can edit yourself down to one to save money without a budget. Perhaps you can cancel your cable. Look at your monthly expenses and see what can go. Cancel subscription boxes, magazines or memberships you don’t maximize benefit from.
Follow these practical tips to save money without a budget. You’ll find it happens quickly when you’re consistent. A minimal mindset is key to saving money without a budget.