It’s totally normal to associate setting goals and saving money with summer, right? OK, maybe not — but perhaps it’s not such a bad idea. There are a bunch of easy ways you can save money over the summer months. That way, by the time winter rolls back around, you’ll be in a comfortable financial spot.
To be clear: YES, you can still go on vacation and spend money this summer. Money should be fun! But you can also save money with these five simple tips.
1) Set Goals and Take Baby Steps
First, what are you saving for? Perhaps you’d like to renovate your house, or buy your first house. Or buy a new car. Whatever it is, make yourself get specific. Name that goal!
Next, find a tool to help you start saving toward your goal. Many banks offer easy savings tools that will stash away a few dollars every day at your command. In other words, out of sight, out of mind! Just plan for something in your future, set your goal, and let your bank do the rest.
There are lots of budgeting apps out there, too. Next time you’re waiting for a plane (maybe for that summer vacation?), check a few of them out. By giving yourself more visibility into how you spend, you may be able to make some minor changes that make a major difference.
2) Save on Insurance
Summer is a good time for a financial “spring cleaning,” especially after taxes are done. For example, perhaps your car or homeowners insurance premiums are a little too high for your tastes? If you increase the amount you pay out in case something happens to your house or car (your deductible), you can lower your monthly premium. It’s a good idea to have a bit of savings beforehand, to account for the unexpected. But those savings can really add up over time.
3) Cook at Home
Want to save a lot of money fast? Try cooking at home more often! Summer is perfect for cooking outdoors, too. Grilled vegetables can be frozen and eaten later in tacos, and who doesn’t love tacos?
If you’re bewildered or short on ideas, you can probably find a number of cooking classes locally. Or just do like everyone else and look up the 800M YouTube videos on how to cook a particular dish or ingredient.
4) Vacation Closer to Home (or AT Home)
If you’re traveling this summer, think about staying a bit closer to home. Traveling within 100 miles of where you live saves you airfare and gas. It also cuts down on emissions. Find an Airbnb or VRBO with a grill and — you guessed it — cook your own meals.
Vacationing in your own town is also an option. A “staycation” gives you time to check out the local historical spots you usually don’t have time for, or explore which greenways your town has to offer. All the free things! They’re yours for the taking.
Camping is another fairly inexpensive option, even if you just drive out to a spot and set up camp for a night or two. You can camp for free on Bureau of Land Management (BLM) land.
5) Cut the Cords?
For the ultimate in luxury and savings, staying at home to catch up on streaming media is an option. But ask yourself: Is that how you really want to spend your summer? And how many of those services do you really watch?
Consider cutting some of those cords. Halfway through the year, you may have an idea whether that “deal” you signed up for in November is still a good deal, given your watching habits. If it’s not, it may be a good time to ditch a couple of the streaming services you use less often.
Anyway, it’s summertime! The sun is shining, and the world beckons. Why not check out the local record shop, or get yourself out to that campground? Or try some of the free concerts and movies in your local parks? All your streaming shows aren’t going anywhere. Come fall and winter, your couch will take you back.
- Set some goals this summer for your finances. Find some easy tools to help you get there.
- Check into your financials, including home and car insurance.
- Cook at home, and vacation closer to (or at) home.
- Camping in the woods is cheap!
- Quit paying for streaming services you rarely use. Get out more!
Want to try finding some savings on your home or auto insurance? Talk to one of Covered’s expert advisors at (303) 302-9927 or drop us a line.