Home Buying Tips

Ways to Spend Less Money

  • Carry written reminders of your goals with you. Decide whether that purchase will help get you closer to your dreams or goals.
  • Carry as little cash as possible.
  • Use direct deposit (instead of getting a paycheck, your salary is automatically deposited in your account) if your employer offers it.
  • Use only a few credit cards.
  • Pay with cash or a check instead of a credit card. Using a credit card adds a finance charge to the cost of your purchase if you do not pay off the entire bill.
  • Don't shop "for fun", or for something to do. It's hard to look at things for sale without spending.
  • Put items on lay-away when you can. This helps stop you from buying on impulse, without thinking. Also, lay-away plans usually don't have finance charges, as credit cards do.
  • Buy only what you need: don't buy items just because they are "on sale" or just because you have a coupon.
  • If you subscribe to cable television, carefully choose which channels you will pay for.

Ways to Make Budgeting Easier

  • Know when bills are due. Time your fixed payments - your rent, your car or loan payment - to match your paycheck schedule.
  • Ask if your utility companies offer "level billing payments" or an "average payment plan". This divides your bills into 12 equal payments. It helps with budgeting because you know how much the payments will be.
  • Utility companies also offer "deferred payment agreements", based on how much you can pay. Under this agreement, you pay back a little bit each month on money you owe, in addition to your current bill.
  • Open a checking account for paying your bills. This gives you another way to see what you spend. Shop for the best deal. Some accounts pay interest, some charge fees.

Tips for Saving

  • Pay yourself first, before spending any of your paycheck. Put that amount in your savings account, even if it seems like a small amount.
  • Keep your change at the end of each day. Put it in a special savings container - you can even call it a piggy bank!
  • Bank your surprises. If you receive money unexpectedly, as a gift or Tax refund, deposit in your savings account.
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