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How to Save More


This may seem like common sense but we are common sense people. If your’e looking for ways to save a bit more money in 2014 – here are some steps that you can take

to put some extra green back in your pockets.

1. Brew your own coffee. I’m m a coffee fanatic and rarely go a few hours without replenishing my mug of joe. I can’t imagine what my coffee bill would be per month if I went to the fast food place or coffee shop – likely $5-$10 per day. At $150-$300 per month, brewing my own makes more sense.

2. Cut your TV costs. Don’t watch a lot of TV or want to make more time for other things? Simply reduce the channels you watch or scrap it altogether. This can put an extra $150 in your pocket per month.

3. Turn the lights off. This one is near and dear to me. My wife often calls me the light Nazi as I’m m constantly going through the house checking and turning off lights. Even with energy efficient bulbs, leaving lights on uses energy which raises electric bills.

4. Pay Yourself First. This is a pretty easy concept. Before you pay any other bill, put some aside for yourself. Then live off what’s left. If there’s s not a lot left for cable TV or other luxuries that’s s ok. Your cable box won’t spit out $50 bills for your retirement, given the huge amount you’ve paid into it over your lifetime.

5. Educate yourself. Take some financial planning classes, money classes, or even check out some great books at the library (free of course). You can learn a lot and put yourself in a great position. Note: Cable news money shows are
not education.

6. Take advantage of every tax deduction and credit you can.

7. Start today. The best laid plans are useless without action. Start a savings plan and stick to it. If you can make it automatic (paycheck deductions to a retirement account) even better.

8. Talk to a financial planner. This may be one of the best investments you can make. Since anyone can call themselves a financial planner, start with a CFP; and then go from there. Interview them, ask questions, and become informed.

9. Don’t be a do-it-yourselfer. Do you give yourself the flu shot? Did you build your own home? Would you act as your own attorney? Likely the answer is no for these questions. The same thinking needs to apply when you think about your finances and retirement planning. There’s s a lot to be said for point number 5, but too many folks rely on the last sentence.

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  1. […] well as their compensation structures). Last week, I was reading Sterling Raskie’s blog about “How to Save More” and number 8 struck me as one of the most important items on his list. Some things are not taught […]

    1. sraskie says:

      Thank you for the mention!

  2. Anne says:

    Hi Scraskie: ps any information on “Tax deductions and Credits” appreciated in future newsletters and articles…thanks a lot !!!(ex. a tax deduction on “home office supplies”; etc. thanks…ar

  3. Anne says:

    Yup; one can save money; esp. with those new portable “coffee and tea” makers !!!
    thanks for the tips !!! AR

  4. Anne says:

    Hi Sarskie: (I like reading your articles); this one irks me most:
    People who turn the heat on in their house when no one is home or
    people who turn the heat on in their house and then open their windows or people who have heat but do not use Storm windows/doors

  5. Anne says:

    ps concerning “lights on’; I do overuse electric lights and I am trying to reduce my bill; however: using lights has advantages; a. lights prevents slips and falls; esp. nr. staircases (this is a beef I have with the manager of our condominium) 2. lights give the illusion of “heat”: and 3. Light actually increases “good mood; however leaving a light on in a empty closet really irks me!! example: Manager of bldg. leaves 3 bright lights on in Laudromat; (this bill alone is more than all the hallway lights together!!! What a waste of money !!! thanks…AR

  6. Anne says:

    Hi Scraskie: Great article…I am with you on the coffee and tea; I figure I can buy a box of 100 tea bags (generic but good) for $3
    At 3c for each tea bag I can make ten cups of tea a day for 30c…
    If I bought my Tea at “Dunkin”; I could pay up to $30 a day !!! @

    1. sraskie says:

      Every little bit adds up!


  7. msolarimas says:

    Last year my wife and I cut back to basic cable and supplemented it with Hulu. Saves us about $60/month. I couldn’t agree more with number 8. As much as you can read and research about investing and financial planning, it’s never customized to your individual goals.

    1. sraskie says:

      It’s amazing how much those little things cutting back on can add up over the long term. Thanks for the comment, Michael!

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