Saving money in the summer isn’t impossible if you have the right game plan in place. Creating a budget, preparing for long days away from home and recording your expenses are just a few of the money saving tactics available.
The summer season can be expensive. With school out, family vacation dates booked, time off work and social gatherings, there’s no doubt that your wallet could be impacted from summer season fun. Summer activities can influence the money you save and the debt you have and unfortunately, it’s easier to lose track of expenses, especially when the sun is out.
According to a report by Nerdwallet, 4 out of 5 North Americans will vacation this summer and plan on spending an average of $3,000 for it. It’s not unusual for a person to put summer activity expenses on credit either, which isn’t necessarily a bad move, especially if you’re using a rewards credit card. However, if you don’t have enough money saved and use credit too much you might be heading into the fall with an empty wallet and not to mention a lot of stress. Here are 5 budget tips for your summer savings that could help you conserve money while still enjoying your summer.
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1. Get Your Family InvolvedJust because it’s the summertime doesn’t mean it’s time to forget about your long-term saving goals. Getting your family on-board with a seasonal summer budget will make the entire clan accountable for watching pennies. Host a family meeting or sit down with your partner to discuss any big expenses that that you’re planning on paying for this summer. Discussing and prioritizing with your family will help you better understand where you can cut back or not in your budget. Set an amount of money that you want to have saved by winter and stick to it for the sake of your credit and financial health.
2. Pack Food and Drinks
A recent article by The Globe and Mail states that 72 per cent of Canadians dine out and 71 per cent order takeout more than a few times a month, which adds up to roughly $200. This isn’t including take-out coffee either, and these numbers go up in the summer. One of the worst money suckers is spending too much on food and drinks when you’re out and about. We’re not saying that you should never treat yourself or your family, but if you’re planning a long day trip try and pack a lunch the night before. One of the best things that you can do for your wallet is organize and prepare for long hours away from home.
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3. Skip ATM Fees
ATM fees are a hot commodity in the summer, as financial institutions and banks aren’t easily accessible when you’re on a summer day adventure. Unfortunately, ATM fees can cost anywhere from $1.50 to $4.50 per withdrawal. This might not seem like a lot, but over time it can add up. If you know you’re going somewhere that might not accept debit or credit, make sure you have some cash on you to spend. Not only with this alleviate stress on a hot summer day, but you’ll be saving money in the process.
4. Record Your Expenses
Tracking your expenses can help you build a bigger savings account while achieving better spending habits. Unfortunately, not a lot of Canadians use this tactic for money saving. However, it’s a great way to see where your money goes every day. Similar to a food diary, money tracking is something that everyone can benefit from as it helps minimize the risk of overspending. Keep a pocket-sized notebook close by or use your smartphone to record your daily spending. By doing so, your money will stay organized and you will have a better handle on your financial income and outcome.
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If you’re looking for some extra cash this summer and are interested in building your credit through the process, visit Fresh Start Finance today to see how we can help!