If you want to know how to drastically cut your expenses, this article will come very handy.
It reveals some top tips that can help just about anyone cut expenses and have more money each and every month.
Why Drastically Cut Your Living Expenses?
It’s that the dreaded time of the month once again.
There you sit at your keyboard or have on your lap your tablet.
Your fingers hover over the keys or the display window on your device. You could almost swear your fingers are trembling.
No, you’re not updating your Facebook page nor are you corresponding with that contrary relative in your life that you said you would reach out to every month.
You are about to enter the nasty and stressful world of bill pay. It’s that time of the month to pay your creditors.
And, true to form, once again it seems like you have more going out than is coming in.
Each month you say you’ve got to get a handle on this, and yet each month the same process plays out.
In addition, this time, it may be different because someone is not going to get paid, and you need to decide which bill will be deferred.
Of course, but you don’t have to keep living like that!
Drastically cutting down your expenses can help you live better and help you have better end of the months.
First of all, according to recent surveys and statistics, it is reported that over 54% of Americans in the United States live from paycheck to paycheck and don’t save a lot of money from salaries they receive.
Additionally, from this same set of responders, 21% of those who live from paycheck to paycheck admit that they experience significant challenges in that they don’t have enough money left over from their income to pay their bills.
So the age-old dilemma in regards to our finances is what needs to go? How do we reduce or eliminate certain monthly expenses?
Let us look at some of the best ways that we can drastically cut expenses from our household budget.
Personal Story of Drastically Cutting Expenses
This financial experience certainly resonates with me and I still wince at those times that I worried about what to pay and what not to pay.
Additionally, I would constantly be looking at my checking account to see what my bank balance was and hoping that certain bills didn’t hit at the same time.
I confess that there were times I was ashamed and penalized by the bank for being overdrawn. I was living on a financial roller coaster and it was no fun at all.
Finally, I came upon a book and one of the practical components of that book worked for me.
The first recommendation was to be aware of all of the bills that were coming in through mail and e-mail.
This action item was sort of a cathartic response for me to take a hard and calculating look at my financial situation.
It wasn’t pretty but it was revealing and made me face the truth that I was in trouble.
The other powerful exercise that the book recommended being done was to keep a ledger and write down every expense and expenditure of money that came out of the household.
By every expense I mean if it was a pack of gum, a 6-pack, a donut, including any payments made to creditors.
Everything was to be written down and scrutinized each month to reveal where the money was being spent and possibly reduced or eliminated.
Suffice it to say that these practical suggestions and others worked for me.
11 Best tips to Help to Drastically Cut Expenses
Taking the Financial Knife to Expenses…
1. Cut the Cable
You have a beautiful 65 inch plus screen TV. To complete the package, you opted to take advantage of cable service.
Remember when you first signed up for the hundred-plus channels at a reduced price.
Also, if you did automated payments, you received a discount. Do you have any idea now what you are paying for that TV subscription cable service?
Chances are it is gone up substantially from when you first ordered the high-definition channels.
Also, it is a fairly safe bet that some of the available channels you haven’t even watched.
Therefore, it’s time to cut the cable. There are other alternatives to getting television streamed through that magnificent television there front and center in your living room or bedroom.
A great way to drastically cut the budget is to cut the cable.
Talking about TV, do you know you can actually make money and get paid watching Netflix? It’s definitely worth checking out.
2. Stop the Stream
Available to the average television watching consumer are various streaming subscriptions.
It seems that there are just as many unique streaming services for each individual’s taste and entertainment preference.
Really, how many hours of streaming service can you watch during the month?
Therefore, a good way of drastically cutting expenses from your budget is with a critical eye rather than an entertainment eye and look at the subscription services that you are paying for.
The questions you should be asking yourself are there any duplication of entertainment programs, how many hours of the streaming service do I watch, and if you have multiple streaming services what one or two could you do away with?
Also See: Why You Should Always Save Money… and tips to help you!
3. Cut the Fat
We’ve all done this.
We hop into our cars and drive down to the local grocery store with the intent of picking up a loaf of bread, a gallon of milk, and a dozen eggs.
When we finally hit the checkout stand, our grocery carts not only have these 3 items but a multitude of other products that we have bought on a whim.
This drastic measure is not suggesting that we cut out all of the treats that we thoroughly enjoy.
However, an important discipline to adhere to when going to the grocery store is to make a list and promise yourself that you will not deviate from that list.
Compulsive buying is a major contributor to frivolous spending and deeply impacts the expense side of one’s financial budget.
It is important to cut the bad fats from our shopping, diets, and personal budgets.
Below are some very helpful tips on being frugal that really work:
- Extreme Frugality (14 Powerful Tips To Help You)
- Frugal Living Tips (21 Benefits & Super Helpful Tips)
- Frugal Vs Cheap – 16 Differences and Tips To Help
4. Reduce Insurance
Insurance can be extremely expensive.
This is especially, if you’re paying for car insurance, homeowner’s insurance or apartment insurance, and other possible insurance needs.
Certainly, insurance is necessary and therefore cannot be cut out completely.
However, there are many options that insurance companies offer to help the consumer reduce costs.
Some of those ways include bundling all of your insurances together and is offered a reduced rate because of the increased insurance needs of the individual.
Another way that one can drastically cut their insurance costs is to negotiate with their provider.
The insurance industry is very competitive and quite possibly your current insurance company might be able to reduce your premiums.
Another option is to shop around for another insurance company that will still meet your insurance needs but at a reduced cost.
Other related financial questions you might want answers to:
- How Much Money Should I Spend on a Car?
- How Many Bank Accounts Should I Have?
- How Much Money Should I Spend on Groceries?
5. Flatten the Tires
By flattening the tire, it is recommended that a real radical and drastic way to cut expenses from one’s household budget is to get rid of their vehicle.
When you think about all the costs associated with driving a vehicle and maintenance, the expenses quickly accumulate.
For example, there are car payments, oil changes, wear and tear on the engine, insurance required to drive, registration fees, yearly registration fees, etc.
Therefore, if the consumer is really brave and daring. They can flatten the tires of their vehicle by selling their automobile or truck.
This could be a temporary option or one that could be fully embraced for a longer period.
6. Cut the Cards
By cutting the cards, it is meant the credit cards.
One of the greatest expenses incurred by an individual or family is reflected in their household budget through accumulated interest costs affiliated with carrying a balance on credit cards.
Cutting the credit cards can be a drastic measure to take in the household. This cutting of the cards can be figuratively taken or literally.
The idea is to put the cards on “ice” and not utilize them in the purchase of items for yourself or the household.
It is highly recommended that the individual use cash for household purchases.
Therefore, the balances, if any, on the credit cards will decrease and in proportion so will the interest costs associated with carrying a balance.
Also See: Easy Ways to Lower Your Housing Costs.
7. Cut Your Mortgage
A substantial way of decreasing one’s expense is by renegotiating any mortgages that are held.
Specifically, mortgage rates are at a significant low and the individual should try to refinance their mortgage and try to lock in a lower mortgage interest rate.
The two variables that will decide this will be if the mortgage rate that you are offered should be less than the one that you are currently realizing and whether it is beneficial to refinance dependent upon how long you plan on staying in your current residence.
8. Cut the Cellular
Probably a close second to American’s love for their automobile is their love for their cellular phones.
It is important to remember that this business is very competitive and so phone services wish to keep you as a customer.
It is important to work with your carrier to see if you can renegotiate any rates.
Also, you may be able to opt-out of your plan and get on a family plan with a family member.
You could pay them a modest fee each month and this would be a win-win for both the individual paying the cell phone service, as well as the individual being added to the family plan.
9. Cut Apartment Rent
One of the harsh realities of life is that the cost of living is always increasing.
It seems like no sooner do we get a pay raise or some additional income than we are made painfully aware that various costs of service will be increasing as well.
One of those annual rate increases in apartment rents.
One of the drastic measures that an individual can take to reduce their apartment rent expense is to negotiate with the landlord and see if there is a service that you can provide instead of the extra rent or maybe even cutting your rent down significantly.
Another option of drastically reducing your portion of the rent is to take on a roommate.
One caution as it relates to taking on a roomy is when it comes to signatures on the lease. You must protect yourself from any unneeded liability.
Also See: Tips to Help You Really Live Rent-Free.
10. Cut out the Night Out
Now that the movie theaters are slowly returning to normal, an entertaining night out for a family was to take in a movie.
However, if looking to drastically cut expenses out of one’s financial budget, perhaps a closer look at this entertainment venue would be warranted?
As you may recall, you bemoaned the fact that going to a movie theater was so expensive.
It is important to remember that the cost of the tickets, plus buying food from the concession stand certainly added up to be a substantial expense for the evening and for the family to be entertained for two hours.
Therefore, perhaps it’s best to stay at home, still indulge in the various snacks and goodies, rent even a couple of movies and still come out far ahead expense-wise than what would normally happen if the family went to the movie theater.
11. Cut out the Table for Two
Americans enjoy eating and in particular eating out.
Who doesn’t enjoy that particular night of the week or the month when a couple or family would splurge and hit their favorite restaurant?
However, this eating-out expense for a couple or a larger family can deeply impact the expense line of the household budget.
For example, a full meal for two plus tips could cost anywhere from $50-$70.
It’s not that you and your partner and family don’t deserve a night out. Perhaps it would be more financially prudent to order in or prepare a nice meal at home.
Another idea would be to invite a friend or other family member to your home to prepare the meal.
That would not only be unique but fun and then you could reciprocate or return the favor.
Also See: Best Tips to Help You Get Out of Debt.
It’s time to get off of that financial merry-go-round.
The turning begins with spending and continues to revolve with bills coming due and either never enough money or just enough money to continue the process again.
You can stop the spinning and get off this never-ending carousel of dizziness.
It’s just a matter of taking a critical look at your budget and cutting out expenses that power this monthly process.
Wouldn’t it be refreshing and empowering that when the bills come due next month that you have sufficient money to pay all of your bills and not have to pick and choose which creditor gets paid?
It’s time to work towards being financially lean by slicing away at those monthly expenses.
It is time to look forward to entering the world of bill pay as confident consumers and the masters of our finances.