My family lives pretty comfortably. We are not in any debt, we can buy things that interest us, and we have enough to share with charities and gifts to others. Still, I often wish we could put ourselves into an even better financial situation. After reading some inspiring blogs about personal finance, I just took the following steps to improve my financial life now.
1) I canceled my under-used consumer reports online subscription. I have used the online service many times in the past, but I use it inconsistently. And, since I was paying month to month, instead of by the year, I was being charged even more - $6 a month.
2) I downgraded my Blockbuster online subscription. We had been using one of the options that gave us the most features, but find that we don't watch near as many movies as we used to. So, downgrading to something that gets us more money in our wallet!Saving
3) My husband and I have decided to give investing a go - we've committed $50 a month towards an investment, perhaps in some kind of mutual fund/index fund. We're still in the research stages as this is a first for both of us, but it's a step in the right direction. For now, that money will just be saved until we know what we want to do with it.
4) We're increasing our savings by $25 a month. For us, this savings account is emergency/car/house fund all rolled into one.
5) We consolidate car trips, and car pool when possible. We own 2 vehicles - Jude's work truck, which guzzles gas, but we can't do without, and my '96 Saturn, which has been known to get me 42 mpg on the highway. Since the truck get less than half the miles per gallon that the car does, we save at least $3 per trip into town just by driving the Saturn instead of the truck. I have some neighbors with whom we're good friends. We make and effort to call each other and share rides when we have errands to do. Doubles as a nice way to have some adult conversation in a week filled we just mama and baby!
I bet each of you could find places you could change your financial life if you felt the need to do so. What can you change?