1. Make Better Use of the Money You Have
The first thing you should do when you’re trying to save money fast is to create a budget, said Ryan J. Weiser, CFP, ChFC, CDFA and president and chief compliance officer of Weiser Financial Planning LLC. “People often have a surprising amount of leakage with their spending habits, and don’t truly realize where it’s all going until they start tracking it.”
After creating a budget, prioritize your expenses and determine what’s most important. “Do you really need the newest iPhone when it’s released?” said Weiser.
Aim to cut out all spending that isn’t absolutely necessary. “Some expenses are mandatory, but many are not,” said David Thomas, founder and CEO of Equitas Capital Advisors, LLC. “Dining out is not. Starbucks is not. Saving $4 per day that would have gone to buying a latte is $120 per month right there.”
Instead of spending money on a trip to the movies or amusement park admission, consider having a game night at home. “Free home family entertainment can be a wonderful thing to reduce spending and bring a family together,” said Thomas.
Related: How to Stop Spending Money
2. Make More Money
“To generate the most money to put into savings, I suggest going through the house and selling all non-essential items on eBay or Craigslist, particularly if there are collectibles, precious metals, etc.,” said Raymond Seakan, founder and chief investment officer of Performance Investment Management. “This can generate a substantial amount of cash.”
You can sell used clothing online on thredUP, Letgo or Plato’s Closet; books on Amazon; computers or cell phones on Gazelle; and unused gift cards on CardCash or Cardpool, said Joseph Inskeep, CFP, financial advisor at Advanced Wealth Strategies Group.
Another way to increase the amount of cash flowing into your bank account is to work more hours if you work at a job that offers overtime pay, or consider taking on a weekend job or side gig to boost your income.
3. Keep More of Your Money in Your Wallet or Savings Account
One money-saving tip is to set up an automatic savings plan with direct deposits into your bank and investment accounts. “Don’t fall into the trap of spending first with the intention to save what’s left, which is usually little to none,” said Weiser.
You can also shop around for better deals on necessary expenses. “Periodically, you should get fresh proposals for all your essential services, such as telephone, internet, utilities, entertainment streaming, online services, home and auto insurance,” said David Barnett, ChFC, FLMI and owner/principal of Grand Arbor Advisors. “Often you can save hundreds of dollars simply by tapping into the most current deals, incentives and service structures. The money saved from your monthly budget can be redirected to savings; for quick savings impact, deals that give you the first month or months free or at a reduced promotional rate are especially helpful.”
You might also be able to keep more of your paycheck in your pocket if you change your tax withholding. “The best way to boost your take-home pay is to adjust your taxes,” said Debbi King, personal finance expert, life coach and owner of The ABC’s of Personal Finance. “Most of us are getting big refunds every year because we are having too much taken out each payday.”
Read: 11 Effective Ways to Trick Yourself Into Saving Money
A Final Word on How to Save Money Fast
Saving $1,000 in a month is doable if you make a few key changes:
- Create a budget
- Cut out unnecessary spending
- Sell nonessential items in your home
- Work overtime or get a side job
- Set up automatic payments to your savings
- Renegotiate with or shop around for providers of essential services
- Change your tax withholding