By: Chonce Maddox at Chime
Do you find it hard to save money?
If so, you’re not alone. Saving money requires a commitment in order to make it a habit. Even then, you run the risk of falling off track when life happens and unexpected expenses hit.
So, what can you do to make saving money easier? For starters, you may want to consider the 30 day savings rule, a popular method to help you set aside more money. Here’s how it works: Instead of making an unplanned impulse purchase, you instead shelf that potential purchase for 30 days and deposit the money into your savings account instead. If you still want to buy that item after the 30 day period is up, go for it. Otherwise, the money stays in your savings account. This, in turn, will help you boost your savings over time.
But even before implementing the 30 day savings rule, it’s important to understand the 30 day impulse spending rule. Read on to learn more.
What is the 30 Day Impulse Spending Rule?
We all get tempted by impulse purchases. Perhaps you walk into a store and see something you’d like to buy. Or, maybe you come across an intriguing ad for a new product or service you want to try out.
If you find yourself thinking about spending money based on your emotions rather than what’s in your budget, this can easily turn into an impulse purchase.
Impulse purchases can easily throw off your budget or even cause you to accumulate more debt if you spend too much. Here’s where the 30 day impulse spending rule comes in handy.
To avoid an impulse purchase, tell yourself you’re going to think about it for 30 days. Take a piece of paper and write down the name of the item, service, etc., where you found it, and how much it costs. Put this note on your fridge or somewhere prominent in your home. Commit to thinking about the purchase for the next 30 days. Consider if it’s a true need or want.
If you still feel like you want to buy it at the end of 30 days, move forward with the purchase. If you’ve forgotten about the item or realized it really wasn’t that important, you’ll have saved that money.
How the 30 Day Savings Rule Ties In
While you’re thinking about your impulse purchase for the 30 day period, start placing money into a savings account. This is money that you would have spent on the purchase.
If you decide to make the purchase, you can take the money out to do so. But, that money will come out of your savings account – meaning it will no longer be there to use toward another savings goal. This rule provides an easy opportunity for you to save consistently and enjoy the benefits of saving money. It also helps motivate you to increase your savings. Why? Because when you work hard to set aside some money, it can be difficult to touch it for a purchase that isn’t a true necessity.
When you consider all your other savings and financial goals, the money you set aside over 30 days can provide you with a sense of security to cover future emergencies or help you pay for that summer vacation.
Make it a Challenge
Saving money is not easy for everyone. This is why this is the perfect challenge. Thirty days is an ideal time frame to challenge yourself to save as much money as you can.
Here are a few 30 day savings challenges you may want to consider in addition to the 30 day savings rule.
Save Spare Change
If you want to increase your savings, consider saving as often as you spend money. Every time you make a purchase, set aside a small amount of money to save. Saving your spare change may not sound like much, but it can certainly add up over time. The best part is that you can make this savings challenge automatic with Chime’s round up feature.
Chime members, for example, are able to round up transactions to the nearest dollar and transfer that money to savings – without even thinking about it.
No Dining Out Challenge
How much do you spend on dining out each day? Do you take your lunch to work, go to happy hour a few times per week, or dine out with family every Friday?
All these purchases add up and you’d be surprised to see how much you spend on restaurants in just 30 days. If you spend seven dollar per day on average on work lunches and coffee in the morning, that’s easily $140 per month. This doesn’t include weekend meals, takeout runs, and dinners with friends or family.
So, commit to eating at home for 30 days straight and see how much you can save. Plan your meals carefully, get creative with snacks, and prep everything weekly.
Project how much you’ll save and set up an automatic savings transfer for that money. Chime members can even save 10% of their paycheck each time they get paid.
Save $500 in 30 Days
Saving $500 in 30 days can be the perfect jumpstart to a cash cushion that will protect you financially and enable you to do more with your money in the future. The key to success is breaking down that $500 goal and setting a weekly or daily savings amount.
For instance, you can save just $17 or $18 per day or $125 per week to meet your $500 savings goal.
You can also look at your budget and see if there are any expenses you can temporarily cut to free up more money to save. Another idea: Check out short-term gigs or side hustles to help you come up with the money. Maybe you can walk dogs, sell some items from your home, drive for Uber, or work a part-time job.
30 Days is a Great Starting Point
If you can commit to saving more money for 30 days, this is a great first step. It will allow you to gain the discipline you need to save money consistently for months or even years.
Are you ready to give the 30 day savings rule a try?
Check out Zebit’s partner, Chime, for better, no-fee banking.