Do you struggle from week to week trying to make ends meet? Are you consistently going without things that you really wish you could afford? Well I have some possible and practical solutions to your dilemma:
1. TIPS TO HELP YOUR BUDGET STRETCH FURTHER.
There are many ideas that you could adopt to help your hard earned dollars buy more than you could before (or so it seems!)
? Do you take your lunch to work? You could save between $15 -$25 per week, if you packed it yourself. You'd have to make it interesting so you weren't tempted to go and buy something else.
? Make your lunchbox food, and that of your children, rather than buying stuff. It is so much cheaper and often tastier! Start making cakes, biscuits and slices etc. If you have a bread maker, make bread and home made rolls for the kids. Get them to design their own shapes, they'll love it. If you add up the costs of bought biscuits, cakes, muesli bars, etc, you'd realise this could be a huge saving, and considerably better for you. It's just a training and prioritising exercise, you can do it if you really really want to save the money.
? Do you eat out regularly, or have a coffee or supper at a caf?? Why not consider having friends over or going to their place for tea or a night out. Play games, watch a video, whatever. This would be great fun but importantly, A LOT CHEAPER. One video hire for $7 compared to all of you paying $12 each to go to the movies. A meal out could cost $70 for 2 people quite easily, and that often doesn't include drinks. You could have a great dinner party for that ? and share it around at friend's places so you all get a turn of cooking and resting as well as sharing the costs.
? Menu planning is a great way I've found to reduce my weekly shopping bill. Menu planning involves deciding at the start of the week what you'll eat EVERY night (and day) that week. Include a couple of pasta dishes or cheapies like tuna mornay or whatever. Determine what ingredients you'll need for all these meals and then only shop for those items. You'll find you wont have the waste and you wont buy 'on the spur of the moment' items. This could also save about $20 - $50 per week (depending on your family and tastes etc)
If you put your mind to it, I'm sure you could come up with heaps more ideas of HOW you could make your income go further.
2. If you have your belt pulled in as tightly as you can, and you really can't find any areas of your life that you could spend less, then perhaps you could try and increase your income. I don't mean ask your boss for a pay rise either. There are many ideas of earning extra income at home e.g. home based business ideas or running your own internet business. Both of these ideas are cheap and easy to start up, you just have to know how and where. I won't go into any detail here, you may want to chase up some of my other articles later.
Saving more money or earning more income on its own is NOT going to make you any wealthier. It's what you do with those savings or extra earnings that will set you apart from the normal and help you get ahead in life.
Based on my own experience, I have found that investing in real estate, particularly real estate with a POSITIVE CASH FLOW, is the best and most secure way to get ahead and stay ahead.
Before you think 'I can't do that, only the rich can invest in property,' then I want to tell you that 'ANYONE CAN INVEST in POSITIVE CASH FLOW property.' You just have to know how (refer to other articles of mine).
How much could we estimate you could save each week based on only those suggestions at the beginning of the article:
$15 (packing lunch)
$10 (lunchbox cooking)
$30 (going out)
$20 (menu planning-cheaper shop)
$75 (POTENTIAL SAVING)
Now, what's something productive you can do with this saving to help you really increase your wealth and get out of the 'rat race?'
SOLUTION: INVEST IN POSITIVELY CASH FLOWED PROPERTY.
The changes you've made to your budget will get you the deposit in no time, plus your extra earning (if you made some!) After that, the tenants pay off the mortgage for you (assuming it has a positive cash flow). You also have some left over money from your better budgeting which you could put towards the mortgage, or better still, save for another deposit on another property.
Before you go investing in real estate, I'd encourage you to get educated so that you really know what you're doing. If it's not done properly, it could be expensive, but if it's done correctly, then it will set you up for the rest of your life.
I hope you have found this article thought provoking and encouraging. You can change your current circumstances if YOU CHOOSE to. I hope this has given you some positive ideas as to HOW.
Mandy Nield is a recognised authority on the subject of investing. Whether you are a fully experienced master craftsman or a raw apprentice, you will learn exciting and achievable ways to improve your saving and invest profitably in real estate, to secure a financial future.