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Is Convenience Busting Your Budget?

time-money The good people at CareerBuilder recently posted the results of a survey of workers. Forty-seven percent of the people surveyed said they “always” or “usually” live paycheck to paycheck.

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Does more money help?

One way to stop living paycheck to paycheck is to make more money. Forty-two percent said an additional $500 each month would help make ends meet.  Fourteen percent already work more than one job.

The amount of money that comes into a household does make a difference, but not as much as you might think. Twenty-one percent with salaries of $100,000 or more said they also live from payday to payday.

We’re working ourselves to death instead of thinking about the other solution to the more month than money problem. We need to look at our lifestyle. We’re so busy trying to make more money to support our lifestyle that we end up spending money we wouldn’t need to spend if we just slowed down and honestly assessed our situation.

Convenience expenses

We’re so busy that we spend more money on “convenience expenses”. We define convenience expenses as the premium we pay for goods and services because we don’t have time.

So we end up in a downward spiral – we work more to have more, but then we
spend more and we don’t have any time to figure out how to do anything differently.

One example of a convenience expense is that we eat out more than we plan to. An appointment runs long. We get stuck in a traffic jam. The boss needs to talk. The next thing you know it’s late. Now we feel we have no choice. We’ve hit that wall. We’re hungry now! We’re too tired to do anything but grab some carry-out or order delivery.

Cutting back

It may seem like a small expense, but it eats away at your budget (pun intended). If you’re feeling like we’ve described you perfectly, don’t feel like you’re alone. We’re right there with you! Here are some ways we’ve found to cut back on this convenience expense:

Always stock some food that’s easy to stick in the oven or microwave.

Then if you’re running late, you can have less expensive convenience food. Plus you’ll save the time of stopping or running out for carry-out.

Plan for leftovers

If our next week’s schedule looks busy, we’ll cook up a little extra food on the weekend so we have leftovers which can be nuked in a matter of minutes. These leftovers are also an excellent way to save money on going out for lunch. There are more productive ways to spend a lunch hour than driving back and forth.

Invest time today to save money tomorrow

By planning next week’s meals, you can find coupons for the items you want to purchase. It’s like printing money legally as we learned from Crissy Thompson, who often spends as little as $10 a week to feed her family of five.

You can also think about where you shop. They’re called “convenience stores” for a reason! We pay a price to be able to run into the store and grab something on our way home.

This is just one example of the many convenience expenses. If you’re living payday to payday or not saving as much as you would like, think about your convenience expenses and the time / money interplay.

There is a huge trade-off between time and money. If you have money,
you can save time. If you don’t have money, it’s important to really
 think about how you’re using your time and try to save money.

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You can get the tips and tools you need to be a bigg success
Subscribing to the Bigg Success Weekly! It’s conveniently e-mailed to you once a week. And it doesn’t cost you any money! But the time you spend reading it will help you make and save money! How’s that for a deal?

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Next time, we’ll discuss how to create wealth in today’s new economy. Until then, here’s to your bigg success!

 

Direct link to The Bigg Success Show audio file:
http://media.libsyn.com/media/biggsuccess/00261-111008.mp3

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You Can Be Debt Free with These 5 Steps

By Bigg Success Staff
07-03-08

Bigg Success with Money

money

It’s funny how many people loathe the thought of renting because “it’s just throwing money away”. Yet those same people think nothing of paying hundreds or thousands of dollars in interest on debt (i.e. “rent” money). Debt costs you money that could be spent elsewhere for something more important or more fun.

Too much debt can also cost you time – juggling bills, answering collection calls, and the like. But there’s still a higher price for excessive debt. It creates stress and worry. Your health may suffer as well.

So getting out of debt is a worthy goal. Here are five steps to do it:

Step 1: Stop adding to it

As long as you’re adding to your debt, you’ll never be financially free. So make a point to pay for everything you buy. If you can’t pay for it when you buy it, don’t buy it.

Step 2: Find a reserve

Now, you just have to go one step further and things can really start going your way. Spend a little bit less than you make every month. We have a great thought-starter on how to do it called 860 63 Moves to Stop Living Paycheck to Paycheck].

This little bit of money is like a tiny snowball at the top of the hill. It will start rolling down the hill and get bigger and bigger. That is, this little bit of money you’re saving each month is going to set you free from the burdens of living with a lot of debt. 

Step 3: Pick either your highest cost or your lowest balance liability

Next, look at what you owe. Pick either the debt that’s costing you the most money (i.e. the debt with the highest interest rate) or the outstanding account you have with the smallest balance.

The first one (the highest interest rate) is the best move for you financially, as long as you follow through on your plan to pay off your debt. But the second one may work better for you because it delivers the quickest psychological rewards, so you’re more likely to stick with your plan. The key thing is to pick a strategy and go for it.

Step 4: Use your reserve

Now you’re going to take that reserve from Step 2 and apply it to the account you picked in Step 3, along with your regular payment. Keep going until that account is paid off. The snowball is starting to get bigger now!

Step 5: Double down and repeat

You’ve paid off one account. Now take all the money you were paying on that account, including the reserve from Step 2, and apply it to the regular payment on another account. Keep doing this until you’ve got all your debt paid off!

 



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