The beginning of each year is when most people focus on getting control of their finances, and I am no exception. In order to reach my 2019 goal, I need to be very intentional with my finances this year. I knew I desperately needed to trim down my monthly budget. If you’re like me, you’ll want to check out Part 1 of this two-part series to learn how to do a spending analysis. Once you’ve completed your monthly spending analysis, then comes the important task of cutting out expenses! Because of my spending analysis, I was able to substantially trim down my spending! And here’s how I cut over $500 from my monthly budget!
How I Cut $500 From My Monthly Budget
Paid Off My Car: $266 savings
By the end of this month, the very minimal balance on my car will be paid off- early. Currently, my car payment is $266 of my monthly budget. My current interest rate on my car is right at 2% which is why I haven’t felt a huge rush to pay it off early, but since I’m trying to reduce my monthly living expenses, I wanted to see this expense GONE!
Using my tax refund, I’ll be able to pay off my car entirely!
Switched Cell Phone Plans: $91 savings
Having a really good cell phone plan is essential to my job, so I need unlimited everything & a smart phone. I’ve had the same cell phone plan for over 10 years! My monthly cell phone bill is $166 which is so ridiculous to me! By switching to my parent’s family plan, I’m able to still have unlimited data, texting, and minutes…and only spend $75/month! This switch saves me $91/month which adds up to over $1,000 annual savings!
Switched Health Insurance Plans: $210 savings
If you’re self-employed, you know the woes of health insurance premiums. For the last three years, my premiums have gone up. I calculated what I spent in premiums in 2018 versus what benefits I actually used. I was spending more in monthly premiums than in the actual health benefits! My health insurance options are quite limited, but several people recommended a medi-share program. I chose the elite medi-share plan, and I’m still saving $210 each month on health insurance!
Tips For Cutting Monthly Expenses
- If you haven’t already, you must cut the cable cord. It’s one of the best decisions I made. Back when I had cable, I was spending over $100/month on cable! That seems so ridiculous to me! Switching was easy, & I haven’t missed cable!
- Check with your cell phone carrier to see what specials they have that could deliver the same service but save you money. They frequently have deals that could save you money. It’s also a good idea to check with other carriers.
- In addition to the above savings, I was able to cut my Internet bill in half. I was spending close to $70/month on Internet. I switched to a slower speed, and I’m now paying half that! Since it’s just me, I have not noticed the reduced speed, & my streaming & Internet usage hasn’t been affected!
- Sign-up for Ebates (affiliate link). With each purchase you make online, you get paid! I get a check every quarter from things I’ve bought online (Ebay, Home Depot, Wayfair, etc). Signing up gets you an automatic $10!
Knowing your largest monthly expenses will help you to identify the areas that need to be trimmed down! Cell phone eating up a large percentage of your budget? Switch plans! Eating out dominating your monthly budget? Challenge yourself to not eat out for an entire month & compare your monthly spending analysis. Saving money doesn’t have to be boring- find an accountability partner, create a competition with your spouse, and seek out creative ways to save money. The key to financial freedom is to dictate your finances not to have your finances dictate you! With a little creativity, you’ll see how easy it is to cut over $500 from your monthly budget!