February 24th 2016
You are not alone if you have a cash flow deficit. In other words, your expenses exceed your take home pay - don’t give up at this point! There are several ways to improve your cash flow, your savings, get on the path to financial wellness and achieve your goal. Working at the following steps because the end result is achieving your goal, let that be the motivation for improving your cash flow!
Eliminating or Reducing Expenses
If you have several loan and/or credit card payments
What monthly expenses are you able to eliminate immediately without much effort? You would be surprised at how much money you spend on coffee, lunches, dining out and entertainment each week. You can save a bundle of money each month by doing some of these things on your own like making your own coffee, bringing your lunch to work and making dinner each night. Rather than going out, entertain at home and have a pot-luck meal and game night. Do you have a gym membership that hasn’t been used in years? Ditch it. Take a look at each expense and determine whether you really need it or not. Weigh the importance of the expense vs. the importance of achieving your goal.
When did you last call your internet/cable provider to negotiate a better deal, or the competition to compare pricing? We get so caught up in our busy lives that we just pay the bills month after month, year after year. Now is the perfect time to do your research. Call each of your service providers (cable and internet provider, car and home insurance) to see if there is a better, lower priced package for your needs. Call the competition and see what deals are out there. Focus on your goal and apply those negotiating skills!
Negotiating better rates when it comes to utilities is often redundant. What you can do is reduce your consumption when it comes to electricity, heating and water, and this will definitely reduce your monthly expenses. Research your providers’ websites for excellent tips on how to reduce consumption and start saving money today.
Dedicate the time to this process. Take the time to analyze each expense to determine whether it can be reduced or eliminated. This process may take time, but it is key in helping you to improve your cash flow.
After you have finished reducing or eliminating your expenses, recalculate what’s left over each month (Income - expenses = savings). If this number is still negative it’s time to look at your fixed expenses and likely make some bigger changes - something we will be looking into more next week. If you have a positive number, wonderful! Now it’s time to think about a savings plan.
Written by Betty Anne Flynn