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6 More ways to stop overspending and save money

Last summer, I wrote a post titled, “Stop lying, 5 ways to stop overspending.” It has been one of my most popular posts. So I’ve decided to revisit the topic and expand the list.

Big SpenderSo here are 6 more suggestions to help stop you from overspending from some of the top financial planning bloggers on the web.

#1 Get rid of disposable money

Financial Samurai say, “The very best way to stop overspending is to “go broke” by always flushing absolutely all disposable income after expenses out of your checking account and into a different bank.  The money must be flushed out in the first several days once the money is deposited, preferably automatically.  Clearly you must figure out your expenses beforehand.  Once you do, and go broke every paycheck, you’ll be controlling your spending and saving in no time!”

#2 Challenge yourself to reduce spending in specific areas

Sit down with your spouse and list the top three categories where you overspend. Then create a list of ideas on how you can reduce spending. For example, if you find yourself dining out too often, then create a list of inexpensive or free date night activities (e.g. picnic at the park and a free museum). Over the next month, work on changing your habits in those three areas. The next month, rinse and repeat.

#3 Surround yourself with frugal-minded people

Phil at PTMoney.com suggests, “Surround yourself with frugal-minded people. It’s easy to avoid having to keep up with the Joneses if you aren’t spending your time with them. Hang out with people who inspire you to be efficient with your money, and who know you don’t need to spend a ton to have a good time. It also doesn’t hurt to have a thrifty spouse. I’m lucky in that my wife is much cheaper than I am. She motivates me to spend less. My advice to the single people out there is to look for a spouse who knows how to spend wisely.”

#4 Go to bed already and stop buying stuff

Besides getting more sleep, you’ll avoid wasting electricity watching TV and you’ll avoid falling into infomercial traps. I sometimes can’t believe what they are selling on TV, but someone is buying. I can’t count how many times I’ve never called and ordered Ronco knives. Fortunately, I always realize at the last second that the knives I have work just fine.

#5 Two words: Duct tape

Len Penzo just posted a list of 4 Ways duct tape can fix your Personal Finances. Here’s an excerpt to make you salivate, “Believe it or not for the past ten years Duck Brand duct tape has held an annual contest known as Stuck at the Prom where they give away college scholarships to high school prom couples who are judged to have created the best prom attire made entirely of duct tape.  I’m not kidding.”

#6 Put a picture in your wallet over your debit or credit card

I sold security systems the summer before I married my sweetheart. To help push everyone through the last two months of the summer, we all listed how much we wanted to earn by the end of the summer and what we wanted to do or buy with that money. The next day, our manager’s wife had printed out our names, how much we wanted to earn, and a picture of our reward. We saw those images everyday before we began knocking doors.

Try putting a picture of what you are saving for in your wallet so each time you go to spend money, you have an image staring you in the face as a reminder to put your wallet or purse away and go home.

Conclusion: Try something

Each of the suggestions above has the potential to help you stop overspending. But none of them will work unless you try something. Don’t worry about getting it all right immediately. So pick a method from above and go at it with all the energy you can muster.

Also, let others know what has or hasn’t worked for you in the comments below. Thanks!

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  • Len Penzo

    Nice! You can always preempt the temptation to overspend by ensuring you never get a chance to spend the money in the first place. Maximize your automatic 401(k) and other paycheck deductions like a flexible health spending account.

    If you don't have ready access to it, you can't spend it! :-)

    (I bet you already covered that in your first installment!)

    Best,

    Len
    Len Penzo dot Com

  • http://www.rabbitfunds.com/ Adam Williams

    I completely agree. We are actually making some changes in the banks we use in part to help automate our savings/investments. “Hiding” the money or placing it in retirement and savings accounts as fast as we can is a huge help for us.

  • http://www.financialsamurai.com Financial Samurai

    Tis what I mention regarding “going broke” to win big! No money, no ability to squander!

    Thanks for hosting Adam!

  • http://www.rabbitfunds.com/ Adam Williams

    I like your phrase “going broke” as it catches your attention but actually achieves just the opposite effect. Your welcome and thanks for contributing!

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  • http://www.pfsdebtrelief.com Steogab

    im a huge believer in the little things add up to a lot mentality. I used to spend a couple of dollars a day on coffee, lunch, whatever. Now that im a bit wiser, i can see just how much money i was wasting before. To help me with this, i actually used a tip i saw on one of these PF blogs. Whenever i have any $1 or 5$ bills in my wallet, i take them out and place them in a box that i empty into my savings account each month. I personally am much more likely to spend money with $1 and 5$ than i am with a crisp clean $20 bill. It has worked so far!

  • http://www.rabbitfunds.com/ Adam Williams

    I like that suggestion. It's so easy to spend small amounts, which is why I also avoid carrying cash like that. It finds a way to get spent all too fast.

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