How to Save Money in the New Year

2016 Budget PlanningA new year is upon us and that means new resolutions! Spending less and saving more is one of the most popular New Year’s resolutions around. But keeping your wallet full and learning how to save money without a plan of attack can be a challenge. Check out our favorite tips for saving big this year.

1. Set Goals

Before you kick off your plan on how to save money this year, you’ll need to set some realistic goals. Review your budget to determine where you are and where you want to be by the end of 2016. Give yourself a weekly or monthly figure and set that money aside in a savings account. At the end of the year, you could have a chunk of change that you may have spent without a precise plan! And if you need help, ask a professional. See if you can reduce or cut out your banking and 401(k) fees and learn how to utilize your HSA to the fullest, if you have one. While getting professional help isn’t free, it will certainly pay off in the long run to learn how to save money with your insurance and retirement planning.

Couple Cooking in the Kitchen2. Get Cookin’

Ditch the drive-thru and kick up your kitchen skills to save some serious dough. Pick up the weekly ads from your favorite local grocery store and scope out the best prices on all your essentials in order to plan affordable meals throughout the week. Portion everything out so you can grab and go in the mornings and skip those tempting lunches out. Keep your fridge stocked with prepped snacks and sides for healthy and affordable food options that beat eating out during the busy week. If you have a large family, opt for bulk grocery stores for the best values. If you’re cooking for a couple or snacking solo, freezing meals can be a great money-saving option, too. Whether you go into full-on chef mode or just cut out a few restaurant trips a week, you’ll get big savings in the end.

3. Go DIY

Conjure your inner crafter and save easy money all year long. Try making heartfelt handmade gifts for occasions throughout the year and skip those pricey presents. Say hello to your handy side and learn how to patch up clothing or fix things around the house rather than automatically replacing them with something shiny and new. You’ll enjoy the creative outlet, feel accomplished and save money all at the same time. Priceless.

4. Ditch Daily Habits

Breaking the bank on your morning brew? Hitting up the vending machine midday? Those costly little habits and treats can add up quickly. If caffeine is your cup of tea, why not invest in a good coffee maker and save money every day? You’ll definitely see the difference in your bank account by breaking these little daily indulgences.

Glass Jar of Change5. Change Things Up

Pennies and dimes and quarters, on my! Coins can seriously weigh down your purse or wallet. Repurpose an old jar and keep it on your counter for an easy way to store all that spare change. It’ll add up faster than you think! Cash it in and use it towards groceries, essential supplies and more. Plus, kids love counting the coins and keeping track – make it a fun family goal!

6. Ridesharing Rules

Easily save money on gas and costly wear and tear on your car by creating a carpooling system. Chat with coworkers who live in your neck of the woods to see if they’d be interested in commuting together. Ridesharing even a couple days a week can add up to quick savings. Determine your gas costs and see if it makes more fiscal sense to take other affordable public transportation options if they’re available to you. Explore your area for simple ways to save easy money with buses, bikes and trains.

7. Recycle & Reuse

Save money and be a pal to our planet by recycling and reusing! Skip those expensive disposable plastic water bottles and opt for something reusable. You’ll save money at the grocery store every week just by making one simple change! Leave those budget-blasting paper plates and plastic utensils behind as well and save money instantly.

Beach Vacation8. Vacay on a Budget

Saving money doesn’t mean you have to cut out all the fun! Head out on your family vacation or weekend getaway, but do your research in advance. Scope out sites like Groupon Getaways and LivingSocial for amazing travel deals and save big with Cash Back at Ebates. Comparison shop for discount hotels and get insider tips on the best food and drink deals at your destination. Two words: happy hour.

9. Shop Smart with Cash Back at Ebates

Why spend more if you don’t have to? When you shop through, you’ll earn Cash Back at tons of the most popular online retailers. It’s such as easy way to save big on the items you were going to buy anyway! From food and entertainment to apparel and so much more, get Cash Back at Ebates when you sign up for a free account. You can easily see your Cash Back activity and sign up for emails on all the hottest sales and specials. Now that’s easy money!

Now that you have our top tips on how to save money and get plumper pockets this year, go forth and save big. Wishing you a wonderful 2016!

Prices and Cash Back percentages are subject to change. 

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