When it comes to a family budget, the best way to have more money is to save on what you already spend.
We all seem to start off the new year with great family budget goals. Goals such as earning a bigger paycheck, spending less, paying down debt, and of course, saving more.
Many of us even add in personal well-being goals too – such as exercising more, eating healthier and trying to reduce stress levels.
Sadly, way too often, all of these goals fade into oblivion long before February makes its debut.
But it doesn’t have to be that way! Especially when you realize all of the above goals are all related and centered around one basic concept – the act of simplifying.
And when you simplify, eliminate, and / or reduce costly unneeded and unnecessary things, great things do indeed happen to you and your family budget!
So how can you simplify? A great place to start is reducing 3 of the biggest wasted expenses to a family budget listed below.
Reducing all of them will not only help you stretch your dollars and budget farther – but help you and your family eat better, get more exercise – and live an amazingly healthier lifestyle.
The 3 Most Wasted Expenses To A Family Budget
#1 Cell Phones/ Data Packages
It’s funny that something that was a luxury a few years back, now seems like a necessity to everyone. Cell phones and data packages have become one of the biggest expenses to the bottom line of a family budget.
And so much of it is simply unnecessary. Take a look at how much your family cell phone’s cost you last year.
Is it really necessary to have the newest phone? The biggest data package? The ultimate fastest speed?
All of those come with hefty price tags to the family budget. And scaling back on them can save you and your family big money.
Avoid constantly upgrading your phone to the newest model with the newest features. Those costly upgrade contracts keep you on the hook for big money, and hold your family budget hostage.
You can save hundreds if not thousands by simply taking a smaller package and keeping an older model phone.
Sadly, we have become an impatient society of having to have the latest and greatest, and the absolute fastest speed.
If it takes a few more seconds to get an answer, or you need to wait until you are connected to Wi-Fi – this may sound crazy, but you will still live. Really, you will. 🙂
#2 Food and Grocery – Grow Some Of Your Food
One of the biggest expenses to the family budget is food. Feeding a family is expensive – whether it’s buying groceries or eating out.
One of the easiest and most simple ways to save money is to grow your own food.
Planting a garden is like planting money. Not only will it save big dollars on your family budget, it will provide you and your family with fresh, nutritious food – and plenty of fresh air and excercise to boot!
We have used our simple raised row gardening method to grow about 3/4’s of our food now for the last 7 years.
It is amazing how much that has saved when it came to feeding a family of 6. In fact, when we had all four at home, it was a life saver!
There are so many people with backyards full of grass that are just waiting to help save money and feed the family.
Instead of mowing, consider growing! See: Raised Row Gardening
#3 Cable TV / Premium Packages
Cable TV and premium television packages are right up there with cell phones as one of the biggest wasted expenses to a family budget.
Cable television has become unbelievably expensive, especially if you add in all-inclusive premium movie and entertainment packages that can push monthly bills to $150, $200, and more.
First and foremost, all of that couch time is certainly counterproductive to a healthy, active lifestyle. You might be amazed at how productive you become when you simply turn it off.
Secondly, there are so many alternatives to high-end cable TV now, you can easily save hundreds off of your monthly bills, and still enjoy a reasonable amount of tv entertainment, all without costing your family a fortune.
Eliminating all of the couch time also has some incredible side effects. Like perhaps growing your own backyard garden this year!
Here’s to saving more and living healthier in the coming year!
Jim and Mary.
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