Going from zero to $2000 in your savings account in just eight short months seems like a daunting task. If it were that easy to do, you would have done it already, right?
But having a little financial security in case something happens is worth a little sacrifice for a short period of time. Remember, it’s not even a whole year! For the peace of mind you’ll get from it, the sacrifices will be well worth it.
So how do you actually do it? Let’s start by breaking the numbers down a little. $2000 in 8 months is $250 a month, $62.50 a week, or $8.33 a day if the month has 30 days. These are numbers you’re probably a little more comfortable working with.
Let’s talk about $250 a month. Where can you make a few cuts in your monthly budget for just 8 short months to come up with an extra $250? Canceling your premium cable package, putting a hold on monthly subscription boxes, reducing your cell’s data plan, and cancelling your gym membership to workout at home will probably get you to $250. Take a good hard look at your budget and find places you can cut back without sacrificing anything you actually need, like medications and rent or mortgage. Remember, it’s not forever, just a few months and the results will make it worthwhile.
How about $62.50 a week? What kind of cuts can you make for that? Use public transportation or carpool a day or two instead of paying for daily parking, skip your morning stop for an expensive coffee drink, say “no thanks” to going to Friday night happy hour and invite your friends over for a potluck instead. These little changes can easily add up to $62.50 a week.
Now let’s break it down even further to $8.33 a day. Again, skipping the coffee house and making your favorite coffee drink at home will probably get you to this goal. Pack your lunch with last night’s leftovers instead of eating out. Buy one less thing at the grocery store. Look for budget recipes that make large quantities so you have a few meals for less.
You can also set yourself up for success with a different kind of saving. Do you use coupons or a reward card when you grocery shop? If not, it’s time to start. After your shopping trip, take a look at your receipt and see how much your discounts saved you then take that amount and round it up to the next nearest $5 or $10. For instance, if you saved $7.27, round up to $10 and add this to your savings account. If you do this just once a week, it will lower the weekly amount you need to save.
What happens if you’ve looked at all your saving options, reviewed your budget, and cut your expenses as much as possible but still can’t make it to $250 a month? Then it may be time to look for ways to earn a little extra. Are you creative? If so, you can start an Etsy shop. Do you have a special skill set or knowledge? How about online tutoring or create an online class to sell on Udemy? Do you have a great personality? Start a blog or YouTube channel and monetize it. All of these options will help you make extra money and won’t cost you very much free time.
The task of saving $2000 in 8 months may seem difficult, but just like setting a weight loss goal, if you stick with it and find a way that works for you, you’ll easily be able to reach your goal.