10 Best Ways to Save Money

From paying down debts to making easy lifestyle changes, these simple tips can help you meet your savings goals.

We all want to save money. But, as everyone knows, it can often be difficult to do so. “Many people have sizeable goals for building up their savings, but unrealistic goals are nearly impossible to put into practice,” says Joye Hehn, Next Step Financial Education Manager at Regions Bank. “That’s why it’s important to think about realistic ways to save, break it down into smaller actionable steps, and make it a part of your ongoing budgeting and spending plans.”

Use these simple money-saving tips to generate ideas about the best ways to save money in your day-to-day life.

1. Eliminate Your Debt

If you’re trying to save money through budgeting but still carrying a large debt burden, start with your debt. Not convinced? Add up how much you spend servicing your debt each month, and you’ll quickly see. Once you’re free from paying interest on your debt, that money can easily be put into savings. A personal line of credit is just one option for consolidating debt so you can better pay it off.

2. Set Savings Goals

One of the best ways to save money is by visualizing what you are saving for. If you need motivation, set saving targets along with a timeline to make it easier to save. Want to buy a house in three years with a 20% down payment? Now you have a target and know what you will need to save each month to achieve your goal. Use Regions’ savings calculators to meet your goal!

3. Pay Yourself First

Set up an auto transfer from your checking account to your savings account each payday. Whether it’s $50 every two weeks or $500, don’t cheat yourself out of a healthy long-term savings plan.

4. Stop Smoking

No, it’s certainly not easy to quit, but if you smoke a pack and a half every day, that could amount to thousands of dollars a year that you can realize in savings if you quit. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the percentage of American adults who smoke cigarettes is now below 12%—join the club!

5. Take a Staycation

Though the term may be trendy, the thought behind it is solid: Instead of dropping several thousand on airline tickets overseas, look in your own backyard for fun vacations close to home. If you can’t drive the distance, look for cheap flights in your region.

6. Spend to Save

Let’s face it, utility costs seldom go down over time, so take charge now and weatherize your home. Call your utility company and ask for an energy audit or find a certified contractor who can give you a whole-home energy efficiency review. This will range from easy improvements like sealing windows and doors all the way to installing new insulation, siding or Energy Star high-efficiency appliances and products—and even solar panels. You could save thousands in utility costs over time.

7. Utility Savings

Lowering the thermostat on your water heater by 10°F can save you between 3% and 5% in energy costs. And installing an on-demand or tankless water heater can deliver up to 34% savings compared with a standard storage tank water heater.

8. Pack Your Lunch

An obvious money-saving tip is finding everyday savings. If buying lunch at work costs $10, but bringing lunch from home costs only $3, then over the course of a year, you can create a $1,820 emergency fund or make a significant contribution to a college plan or retirement fund.

9. Create an Interest-Bearing Account

For most of us, keeping your savings separate from your checking account helps reduce the tendency to borrow from savings from time to time. If your goals are more long-term, consider products with higher yield rates like a CD or money market account for even better savings.

10. Annualize Your Spending

Do you pay $20 a week for snacks at the vending machine at your office? That’s $1,000 you’re removing from your budget for soda and snacks each year. Suddenly, that habit adds up to a substantial sum.

As you implement these tips into your financial life, remember that where you save your money is important too. Regularly move the money you save out of your checking account into your savings account, where you’ll be less likely to touch it before you reach your goals.

Three Things to Do

  1. Learn more about creating a budget to meet your savings goals.
  2. If you want to get a jump on your savings, open a savings account online today.
  3. Need help deciding what type of bank account would be right for you? We can help you find the one that aligns with your goals.