One of the questions that I hear so often on social media relates to the fact that someone wants to start prepping but doesn’t have any money.
Usually, the advice is to begin by learning skills, and it is excellent advice.
However, it never addresses the question of how to actually come up with the money to begin a supply of food, water and other items that could be useful.
I will be sharing with you some techniques. These techniques work.
I have used them to go from pay check to pay check to being able to live debt free and make a nice emergency fund.
I have gone from not being able to go to the movies to being able to travel around the world to many of my dream Destinations.
In this article, I am going to give you a lot of tips on how to manage your personal finances to make the absolute best use of the financial resources that you have.
I will teach you how to live within your means and develop strategies that will aid you regardless of where you lay on the income spectrum.
Saving money is easy. 1k is saving $20/week, 5k is 100 a week, 10k is 200 a week. The question isn’t how you save it but where do you find it. Here are strategies to find that extra money.
Step One -Discover what you spend money on.
Make a spending diary
– for just a couple of weeks to a month write down everything that you spend money on every day. Having it on your bank statement won’t work.
You need to write it down and specify each item at the end of the day.
This will show you what you really spend your money on.
It might be that you find out that you are paying 20 dollars every two weeks on nasty gas station coffee. Or something else equally silly.
When you look at a debit on a credit card or bank statement, it doesn’t break down what each item is.
By doing this, you will be able to identify patterns in your own behavior and how much you are spending on these patterns.
Look at your bank statement
– It could be that you have signed up for something and just completely forgotten about it.
Every month this one thing is being taken out of your account.
By discovering this monthly payout, you can decide if it is worth having or if it is just a money drain.
Looking at your bank statement will also help to figure out what bills take the most out of your income.
You will know precisely what is being spent on what.
It will also help you to find out if you are being charged by your bank for certain transactions. Hidden fees and taxes add up.
Locate them and find out if you can somehow reduce them. Either through negotiating with the company or by canceling subscriptions.
Look at credit card statements
– It may be that your credit card is costing you a lot of money in fees.
If you are carrying too high of a balance or making payments late, then you know that there is a tremendous amount of money in interest and late fees.
You probably already know this, but by taking a good look at them, you will manage to discover which are the biggest drains and make your strategy to eliminate it accordingly.
Step Two – Make a Plan.
Identify your priorities. Almost every personal budget revolves around three significant expenses.
Food Shelter and Transportation. After these are taken care of factor in debt payments, decide how you will prioritize savings, household expenses, and entertainment.
Decide what it is that you are trying to achieve.
Are you trying to lower your overall debt? Are you trying to save for a significant purchase?
Are you at the point where you can work on having a healthy emergency fund pad?
By clarifying your priorities, it gives a concrete goal to work towards.
– try to think of scenarios that have the potential for happening and address them.
Do you need new tires on your car now but can’t afford them? Then think of different scenarios.
Should you get Triple-A in case you need a tow?
Should you buy one tire at a time?
Can you afford to risk the loss of income should you become stranded?
Can you rideshare until you have enough to buy the new tires for a little help with gas?
How would you address someone becoming ill in your household? What would you do if you became injured and unable to work?
Brainstorm as much as possible and research different methods to take care of problems. Try to speak with someone that may know more than you.
Encourage family interaction
– encouraging a discussion with your family allows everyone to feel like part of the team.
This groupthink will also allow you to see holes in your planning or become aware of other opportunities.
It also encourages everyone to make a concerted effort to achieve whatever goal it is being discussed.
You will find out if someone has a different priority than you as well. Don’t get angry, but consider what and why it is that this person thinks this way.
Step three – Identify Waste and Terminate It
Like I discussed before, subscriptions that are no longer needed, hidden fees and charges are wastes of money that are easy to identify.
But other wastes of money can be eliminated to free up extra money to put towards whatever goal you might have.
Decide if there is an opportunity to lower or eliminate any kind of waste that you might have.
Don’t become discouraged if you are unable to eliminate all of the waste all at once.
It is a process that may take some time.
You didn’t accumulate debt and wasteful habits in a day, week or month. What makes you think that you will be able to get rid of them quickly?
Work toward it and keep it in mind. Eventually, you will create an opportunity.
There are many things that enormous wastes of money. Listed below are some of the biggest culprits.
You must decide if having these things are worth your overall financial happiness.
Ten Huge Money Wastes
There are certain things that just seem to soak up extra money.
You have to decide if they are really more important to you than being able to live a little more freely.
Below are some of the most important ones.
Whether it is fast food or going to a sit-down restaurant eating out is expensive and wastes money.
I’m not saying you should never eat out. What I’m saying is that you need to eliminate it except for rare circumstances.
A lot of people argue that buying healthy foods is expensive, more expensive than fast food. I will tell you that this is a myth.
Let’s compare. A Mcdonald’s Quarter Pounder meal will cost in the area of around 7 dollars.
A nice homemade stew will require approximately 15 dollars to cook. At a glance, the Mcdonald’s meal is cheaper.
But think, that meal will only feed one person one time. That stew will feed multiple people for a couple of meals.
Not to mention that the fast food meal is even worse health wise.
Calorically the fast food meal is denser. But nutritional value is much lower.
Eating empty calories isn’t a good thing; otherwise we all might as well live off of candy bars.
The other part is that you could spend your money on a meal that just isn’t that good.
My wife has become adept at cooking a steak.
So good that I no longer care for restaurant steaks, they just aren’t even close to being as good.
The last time I went to a steak house, it was just a dismal letdown.
That steak meal costs me 12 dollars at home but costs 50-60 at this steak house.
So learning to cook a feast to the best of your abilities will definitely pay off dividends in the future.
One other way to cut down on meals and also to have something to do on the weekend is to rotate dinner with friends.
Make a deal to switch cooking meals at each other’s houses on weekends.
Not only will this save you money because you are cooking for multiple people with one meal but you also get to have (hopefully) an enjoyable time with friends in the process.
It gives you something that might be free as opposed to doing something that will cost you money to do.
Going to a club, eating at a restaurant or going out for a movie all cost money.
You might just find that you have a way better time cooking a meal, watching a movie at your or their place instead.
Television, whether it is cable or satellite, costs a tremendous amount of money.
I’ve heard cases of people paying over a hundred dollars a month on television. This is a little crazy.
Especially now that we have such a vast variety of bargain television options such as Hulu and Netflix.
Each of these costing around 16 dollars a month. Youtube has a subscription television plan.
There are a lot of different options.
Now, this isn’t what I was talking about in the original blurb of this article.
There are other ways to save a thousand dollars, but this is one method.
Can you wait to see that new episode for a year? If so, you have literally already saved your 1000 dollars that I have promised you.
– There is this funny thing about designer clothes that most people don’t realize.
It’s that people who have money can spot a person without money based on what they are wearing.
A lot of rich people just won’t wear high-end clothing. They don’t have to.
They don’t feel this need because they don’t need to impress anyone. They already have the wealth to do what they want.
I worked security for a man whose summer mansion had a Toyota Camry parked outside.
Was there a Bentley in the garage? Yes, but the daily driver was a Camry.
This family had wealth and the ability to buy whatever they wanted but didn’t feel the need to display their wealth to show off.
People think that having expensive clothing shows your status and it can in the appropriate circumstances.
Having a Prada bag only says that you (maybe) foolishly spent a lot of money on a purse or that it is fake.
A wealthy person who buys designer clothing will have a Prada purse, but they will also have a Louise Vouton Scarf, a pair of Calvin Klein Jeans, a something from Gavinchi, etc. etc.
So unless you bought that at the consignment shop or Chinese knock-off flea market, chances are you just wasted your money.
Money that could have been spent on something more important.
Don’t buy designer clothing.
New cars/Luxury Cars
– I lived in a town. In this town, there was a place where a lot of very low-income people lived.
A few of the houses were literally sided with nothing more than plywood.
The odd thing was that parked in the driveway of this plywood home was a current year Cadillac Sedan.
Now, I’m not going to tell anyone how they should live.
But personally, I think that this is a colossal waste of money to have a 30k car when you don’t have a home with brick, vinyl siding or something that won’t literally rot away in a few years.
That being said, I know a lot of people that spend money on vehicles that it just doesn’t make sense to own.
You live in an apartment but pay for a brand new BMW.
(I know a lot of guys who do this to get girls. If I was a girl I would ask for the credit score.)
Not only is the luxury car expensive but the maintenance on the vehicle is what really is the expense of owning luxury cars.
Another thing to consider is the fact that a new car will lose a massive amount of its value the instant it drives off the lot.
It may just make sense to purchase a well maintained used vehicle with low mileage rather than a new car.
If you do feel the need to buy a new car make sure that it is in your price range of what you can legitimately afford to pay for and maintain.
Buy a car that is manufactured in your country. Parts for foreign cars can be much more expensive as well as the vehicle themselves.
– Bottled water is literally a rip-off, especially for anyone wanting to be a prepper.
In nearly all cases, they are literally tap water that has been processed in industrial reverse osmosis system with mineral re-added.
Learning to purify your own water is not only a basic skill set of Preppers, but it also saves you money.
It is a skill that everyone should have, because not all municipal water systems are pure.
We all know what happened in Flint Michigan U.S.A. But other sites are not as extreme or well known.
Some places are actively covered up due to the amount of money made by companies that utilize Fracking to harvest natural resources.
There they say that nothing is wrong with the process, but then the horse’s hair starts to fall out as they die from cancer all of a sudden.
I have found this website that allows you to check an independent study of your local water based on your zip code.
If you don’t see any information on your zip code, it means that your water meets federal guidelines for water purity.
Instead, buy a container and buy some method of home water purification.
Look at this little begger! He makes me sick!!
– I know that every woman dreams of being a princess on her wedding day.
At the same time, it just doesn’t make sense to spend thousands of dollars when you could use that to annihilate your debt or put a down payment on your home instead.
My wife and I did, and we are happier than if we had spent thousands on a single day of our lives.
Maybe it’s just me though, I personally have better things to do than to spend a day going to someone else’s wedding.
Especially, when I think about how they have just created a massive stress circus for themselves.
A useless degree
– I’m definitely not saying that an education isn’t valuable. I have a heartfelt belief that educating yourself and having some proof that you have learned the basics of a field of study is essential to success.
However, when you spend 50k-100k on a degree in Ancient Egyptian Lesbian Philosophy, you have just wasted your money.
There is a simple rule to finding a degree. If you have to spend money on college, take a course of study that has a good job forecast.
Find out what fields are lacking in manpower and qualified personnel. Find a degree that correlates to that field and your own personal interests.
Don’t shy away from blue collar or Vocational programs. I know one person with a Master’s Degree making 15 Dollars an hour working at a call center.
I know an electrician that make 75k+ a year with a few certificates and a couple years of experience.
Just because you enjoy writing, history or some subject doesn’t mean that you should seek a degree in that field. Writing will soon be automated.
History is like Football, the only thing that you can do after getting a degree in it is to teach others, etc.
Find one that will make you money. Also, you must be willing to retrain if the time ever comes when that field is saturated with people.
– Ladies, we men don’t need to make up. It’s nice sometimes, and sometimes it makes you look like you just got off work at Ringling Brothers.
A real man will want you no matter how much makeup you have on unless you are ugly.
In that case, use as much as you want. It won’t help unless you are a master of disguise, even then only until it wears off.
So find out what works for you and buy it. You don’t need to have a footlocker full of cosmetics unless you are some kind of Hollywood Special Effects Technician…. Or Ugly.
– Once upon a time vitamins were all the rage. In the 80s, Hulk Hogan told us that we would grow up big and strong like him if only we would eat Flinstone Vitamins.
Then we found out that vitamins are not only somewhat useless if you have a healthy diet, but can also be deadly.
How is this? Some vitamins are manufactured using questionable techniques.
Using fillers and additives that have a use in the petroleum industry. Not necessarily something that you want inside of your body.
So just eat, and you won’t have to worry about using vitamins, or spending money on them.
Unless you are pregnant and your doctor recommends a specific type. Then, by all means, use them.
– Personal Trainers hate him, learn how to lose pounds and save money with this one trick!!!
How’s that for clickbait?
Let’s face it, you get that New Year’s Resolution in your head and you are just all pumped to go to the gym.
Then a month passes and something comes up and you just never go back.
That means that you end up spending 30-60 dollars a month for something that you don’t use.
Worse still, you can get just a good of a work out without a gym.
One of the biggest men I have ever met was a Navy Corpsman who worked out exclusively with Calisthenics. He was huge!
It wouldn’t have cost him anything to go to the gym, he merely considered it a waste of time to drive somewhere when he could just as efficiently work out with what he had laying around and his own body weight.
There was no lack of physical development so far as I could determine.
He ran 3 miles in 18 minutes, could do 40 pull-ups and nearly endless situps.
You don’t need a gym, you just need to work out.
Make that budget and use it
– The hard part is over, making that journal of your expenses was the hardest part. Now it’s time to take that information and put it to use.
Cut out one significant expense – a budget is all about making tiny adjustments to your spending.
Those five dollars here and 10 dollars there are adding up.
The question is, do you want to have them adding up in your emergency fund or in someone else’s wallet?
You want to try to get to the point where you have at least 100 dollars extra at the end of the month.
The easiest way to do this is to cut one significant expense.
Figure out what it is that you could comfortably live without and get rid of it if you can.
This is the first step to reclaiming your personal finances.
Budget your plan
– Adapt your budget to your ideas. Make your spending decisions based on actual income.
Don’t allow things into the budget that don’t specifically lead you towards whatever goal you have chosen.
Never consider overtime or windfalls as part of your budget.
This will force you to deal with the impact of any purchases and can help deal with expenses that weren’t part of the original budget.
Budget the special events
– Don’t forget to budget in special events such as children’s birthdays, Christmas, Thanksgiving, wedding anniversaries, property taxes and vehicle inspections.
They will come eventually.
You need to have them as part of your budget planning.
Maintain a list of goal items
– These are things that you would like to purchase if they go on an incredibly good sale.
Keep them in mind and track them monthly.
You never know when you might find an incredible deal on them, and it also helps to keep your budget in mind as well.
By having some idea of what you really want, you stay focused on them rather than random things that you don’t necessarily want but might purchase as an impulsive act.
Don’t be too strict
– A budget is a little like a diet. No one wants to be a slave to either one.
If you go into it all at once eating oatmeal for three meals a day, it probably won’t last.
An overly strict budget can destroy itself in a short period.
It can be abandoned and left for dead on the side of the road along with your hopes and dreams.
Reward yourself by getting that little thing but make sure that you have planned for it. Never let the budget control your life.
It is a tool that you control. Priorities can change. When you reach your financial goals, take a moment to relax.
What is the point of sticking to a budget if it doesn’t allow you to enjoy not worrying about money?
Have money set aside as “Petty Cash.”
– This money can be for free time and hobbies.
Vacations, hobbies, etc. This will help to keep you focused on saving.
Without something to look forward to saving can just be a chore and one that is easily disposed of.
Treat yourself don’t cheat yourself.
It will also allow you to make purchases of opportunity if you find a real bargain on them.
But make sure you budget your strictness relieving Petty Cash.
Keep a record
– Recording your budget and what you have actually spent your money on allows you to see the future and the past.
You have your road map towards your financial plans, but you also have an idea of how your budget has performed in the past month or year.
This allows you to spot trends in your spending and with this information you can take action to improve in future budgeting.
Do have some discipline
– You might find a sale for a goal item which is part of your overall plan. It’s okay to go ahead and purchase if you haven’t already spent your allotted Petty Cash money.
But don’t go overboard with it either. Don’t think that you can use next month’s Petty Cash this month. You think that you won’t spend that money next month but you will.
It is merely human nature. Until you develop the financial discipline or appropriate cushion fund I highly discourage this activity.
– Every few months take a step back and examine your budget. Compare your actual spending to what you had initially planned to spend. If you see overspending in one area, you may need to work on the budget again. Work on eliminating debt.
Analyze High and low points.
– Once you have a little data you can do a quick review to find out what works and what doesn’t.
What tactic wound up saving you money? Where did you spend money unnecessarily?
For example, I found that I am so hungry after work that I would stop at a fast food place.
I tried having a couple of bars that I liked in my car to curb my appetite.
It takes practice. Just like any skill, and Personal budgeting is a skill, it takes practice.
Doing it once and forgetting about it will not work. Practice this as you would any other ability.
Set a specific time each month to review and reevaluate.
Set up reminders
– Take a look at your budget to see how you have performed. Consider special circumstances that have occurred.
I’ve already messed up, now what? Start again, try again. Learn from your mistake of why it might not have worked last time.
Your budget will become a habit. Budgets are habits.
How to make saving money super easy
– Let’s say that you stop eating out or any of the other recommendations.
Now that you know that you have liberated approximately 10 or more dollars a week according to your budget journal, set an automated payment into your savings account.
This way you don’t even miss that money. It will just show up as kind of a pleasant surprise.
Once in a while take a look at how much has been saved. Preferably whenever you do your budget again as it will give you that extra little bit of motivation to find savings.
The same could be done for a pay raise.
That extra dollar sounds good but usually doesn’t end up being a lot at the end of the week after taxes.
So I opt to go ahead and store it in the form of a contribution to 401k. It makes saving that little bit easier.
Not only that but if your employer has a matching contribution, you end up with an even more significant raise.
Combine that with the compounded interest, and it really doesn’t make sense to take that small bump in your check every week or couple of weeks.
You are just throwing money away and missing a great opportunity.
Besides, prepping is preparing for all contingencies and what if the Apocalypse never comes in your lifetime? At least you will have a nice nest egg to fall back on.
Coupons and Stacking
– Most people think of extreme couponing as accumulating. Or using multiple coupons to save. It is this and a little bit more.
I will give you an example. Recently there was a 20 percent off sale at a local department store.
We went to this sale and shopped some clearance items and some Bogo (Buy one get one) deals.
They allowed us to use a 15 percent off coupon for our purchase.
Combine that with the 10 percent that we got off for opening a store card and the 10 dollars per 100 dollars spent.
Oddly it counted toward total before discounts, be sure that it does. Or at least the cashier made a mistake.
Basically, we ended up purchasing 500 dollars worth of clothing for 275 dollars.
We received another 60 dollars in store vouchers for future purchases.
We later went after receiving a 20 percent off coupon as part of the store mailing list advertising.
We bought some shoes for 100 dollars on a buy one get one. Used our 20 percent off making it 80dollars.
Then used our 60 dollar voucher to buy four pairs of shoes for spending 20 dollars out of pocket.
We spent a little under 300 but what did we get? 6 pairs of jeans, 12 shirts long and short sleeve, a jacket and four pairs of shoes.
All outstanding quality and brand name.
(And by we, I mean she. She really did all the work, I’m just swooping in like a corporate America shark and claiming all the glory.)
This works with food coupons as well.
How do you do it?
You read the fine print on advertising and one the company website to figure out how exactly you can combine offers in the best way possible.
You look for the Bogo deals and clearance items.
Often, there are restrictions such as clearance items not being included or something else.
It works the same for food items. Often a store will have a sale as a “loss leader” to get you into the store.
These items are great to stock up on if they are something that you will use.
– You could learn extreme couponing, but more stores are becoming wise to it.
Also, you end up with a bunch of junk that you don’t really use just to make the sale work.
But usually it is free anyway, so you can give it away or sell it.
I won’t get into detail here because there is plenty of information online on how to do it.
However, extreme couponing takes a massive amount of time so be sure that it is worth the time investment to you.
Some grocery stores allow you to use double coupons. As of this writing, these are County Mart, Bi-Lo, Dierbergs, Foodland, Buehler’s Fresh Foods, Bashas, Brookshire Brothers, Acme and Apple Market.
Each has its own section of the Country.
Check first with the store to make sure that their policy hasn’t changed or that it isn’t dependent on a particular day.
Save on Meals.
Meal plan with overlapping ingredients.
– Try to figure out some meals that have ingredients that can be used for different meals.
Often the best are stews or crock pot cooked meals.
This way you can look for bulk purchases of items and know that they won’t go to waste.
It also makes cooking for the week easier.
After an initial time investment of trying to figure out what meals to cook, you end up with a repertoire of meals to choose from.
Making deciding what to cook much more accessible and allowing you to free time up because you can then do the next thing in this article.Batch cooking
If you are using overlapping ingredients to cook and find deals on them, you can also save time.
Time is money after all.
Making a batch of cooking over the weekend allows you more free time to pursue what you want to do during the week.
You can store them in containers and quickly heat them when you get home from work.
Sparing you the time spent standing next to a stove.
You can also learn canning for certain items.
Canning once the exclusive domain of women is now being looked at seriously by many men in the prepper community.
Why? Because it allows you to store your food for several years. This is a serious prep.
– Experiment with generic store brands. Some taste like cat food and some are better than the name brand.
There is a secret in the food manufacturing industry.
It is this. That some “name brand” food items are made by the same manufacturer and packaged under a different brand.
In other words, a food processing factory will use a nearly the identical recipe for an item and then put it in a container with the markings of different manufacturers.
It is perfectly legal and not uncommon.
So that generic item may be processed in the exact same factory, under the exact same conditions and then sold at a lower price.
Learn to cook from scratch
Learning to cook from basic items will save you a considerable amount of money.
Sometimes it takes a lot more time, and sometimes it doesn’t, it just depends on what you are cooking.
Not only does it save you money, but you also guarantee that the items that you are using are fresh and healthy.
There is no question about that chicken pot pie that you have made when you have combined all the ingredients.
But who knows what someone has done or what the conditions were like in the place that made that one that comes out of a box.
Of course, in the beginning, you may end up spoiling a few things and burning others. But at least it is a skill, and you can learn from your mistakes.
Plus, it’s better to learn now when the risk isn’t so high rather than later when it could mean the difference between life and death.
Go less often to the Supermarket
Have a game plan when you go to a supermarket. They invest a lot of money in psychological marketing tactics. They want you to buy stuff.
Having an idea of what you are there for will prevent you from making unnecessary purchases. It will also save you gas and time. And Never shop while hungry.
Side Hustle/ Side Job
– You have to decide if your spare time is more valuable than your goals.
If your goals are more important than watching another show to kill an hour or two, then finding a side hustle or side job may be the way to go.
Investigate different avenues, think of what you know how to do and then try to find companies that can use those skills part-time.
Check with temp agencies or staffing agencies.
Sometimes they have small assignments that are low-level filing or data entry or something else of that nature.
Something that isn’t too stressful or difficult.
Some companies may have jobs that are offered part-time such as dog walking or cleaning services.
You might have a crafty side and be able to sell items on Etsy or at local flea markets.
Everyone has something that they can do, even if that one thing is manual labor.
So find someone or some company that is willing to pay for it.
Don’t miss work.
– It isn’t easy sometimes, but it won’t help your cause to miss work.
Not only that, if your job offers overtime opportunities, it is best to take them for a couple of reasons.
The first is that you are obviously giving yourself an instant raise. The second is that no job is ever guaranteed in today’s world.
– Sometimes asking for a raise will get you nowhere.
The company may just not be able to pay you more money. Or the company may not want to spend you more money.
It is a sad truth that sometimes the best way to increase your pay is just to find a new place to work.
This works especially if your skill set is in demand. You might be able to quickly find a new position that can increase your yearly raise thousands of dollars per year.
Just don’t quit your current job before finding that new one.
Go back to school.
– It may be that you are in a dead-end field. Perhaps you have already acquired a useless degree, or you might be just starting.
Again, find a degree or course of study that has a high demand and high future projection.
Chances are that your current job doesn’t pay much merely because the amount of skill needed to perform it just isn’t very high.
Maybe, you are lacking a specific qualification or skill that could be easily acquired from one or two classes if you already have a degree.
Go to school and acquire a skill set that will allow you to compete for more lucrative positions.
You may be surprised how a simple certificate after a few classes will allow you to open doors that were previously barred and guarded.
Getting that piece of paper doesn’t change who you are, it just tells people that you have achieved a basic level of understanding and competency in a particular area.
It may even be a Post-Apocalyptic skillset such as medical, trades, agriculture or business. Although, it can be whatever you want it to be.
Just so long as it is a skill that is wanted and needed by your local economy.
If you don’t have any money to go to school, it may actually even be better.
Some schools in some areas offer free education and books based on income. All you have to do is agree to show up. How is that for improving your circumstances.
Of course, they aren’t advertised, and it takes a lot of leg work to find them. But they are there.
I will give you an example. I once dated a woman who told me about how she had been homeless and living with her two children in her car.
She decided that she needed to change something with her life and resolved to go back to school.
She made an effort (which I can only imagine how difficult it could have been) and graduated.
She now makes over 100k a year and has a job that allows her to travel to Europe every 3 months for work.
For you 3 Europeans that are reading this, just think Ibiza I guess.
I hold this woman in high esteem, and if she did it, you could do it.
“But I’m completely broke.”
Even if you are completely broke there are things that you can do. The only thing is you have to absolutely watch how you spend money. I’ll give you a few ideas.
Go to the Library.
– Libraries are free. You can take out books and movies and don’t have to pay anything.
You can read about skills that you want to acquire or just entertain yourself.
There are also classes at some libraries that you can sit through to learn new things.
Want to learn how to start your own business? The library offers a class.
Want to learn how to take advantage of some government programs?
The library may have a class on something specific to your interest.
Plus, there is no sense in laying around feeling sorry for yourself when there is an entire world or knowledge that you can find in your local library.
– Look, people bring food or donate at their local jobs to food pantries because it makes them feel good.
It is a waste for people not to use them. Don’t get down on yourself if you find that ,maybe, you might want to consider using them in order to give yourself a little breathing room.
– Yes, school is on here twice. Why? Because it is the quickest way to increase the potential to earn an income. It also makes the kind of work you find much easier.
There are plenty of programs out there to go back to school, especially if you are broke.
Personally, I think it’s great. Because there are a lot of jobs out there that go unfilled just because there aren’t enough trained people.
So find a way to go back to school and improve your life.
– Make use of local free activities. Often there are movies at the park or free courses offered through some agency.
Go ahead and take advantage.
There could be free CPR training or something equally important.
Some places have budgeting classes that they actually give you 50 or more dollar gift cards for merely taking the course.
Use what you know
– I know a man in the Hollywood Hills who was addicted to Heroine and living on the street at one time.
He would collect cans and other recyclables to fuel his drug habit.
Eventually he was able to get off drugs and used his knowledge of the recycling industry to make a company.
His next door neighbors are Brian Austin Green and Megan Fox. This is a true story.
So use what you know, you may find that you have learned something that can be an advantage to you. You just have to learn how to make money from it.
Dos and Don’ts.
Even though you want to save money or make money, there are a few things to watch out for. Some may be obvious and others not so easily identifiable.
Don’t do anything illegal.
– It goes without saying that you probably shouldn’t do anything illegal. I won’t get into the morality of it.
Instead, I will tell you that the risk/reward is just too low in almost every instance of illegal activities.
I have known quite a few people who were otherwise intelligent people.
Except when the pressure came to acquire money they opted to do something illegal.
The strange part is that if they had just used that time and energy in the pursuit of something more legitimate they would have been in better circumstances than those that they found themselves in.
Don’t pay for the right to earn money.
– Some companies will try to make you pay a fee to sell a product or join a group.
Multi-level marketers will try to get you to join their crew and explain how you will one day be making millions off of the people in your downstream.
This is after you pay them a sizeable amount of money to set up your “business.”
The chances of this happening are very slim. Usually, the products are of low quality and often the only sales you will make will be from friends or family that buy out of pity.
Do pay off High-Interest Debt.
– We all want to look at that checking and savings account and see a nice sum of money there.
However, keeping a credit card with a high-interest level will keep you from your goals.
If you have a credit card that has a high-interest rate, it should be your top priority to pay that off first.
It won’t matter what you have in the bank if your paying fees on high-interest debt.
Split your money between saving and paying off that debt.
Work towards completely paying off one debt at a time.
Do make an emergency fund.
– When you run into an emergency, the last thing you want to do is to put it on a credit card.
Having a big cushion for emergencies will come in very handy for unexpected fiscal problems.
This will also open up a lot of opportunity down the road and alleviate a tremendous amount of stress in your life.
Allowing you to make even better decisions in regards to your spending.
Don’t make your emergency hard to use.
Be careful where you store your emergency fund. You don’t want to have that cash locked into an investment account.
If you should ever need to use that money for some reason, it will take longer to withdraw it and will actually cost you money in some instances.
Better to have emergency funds in a simple savings account.
Maybe even have a couple of savings accounts if your bank doesn’t charge fees for doing so.
Don’t Neglect Insurance
– I was hit by a drunk driver who didn’t have insurance because his license had been revoked from previous incidents.
Miraculously I walked away without a scratch, but my car wasn’t as lucky.
Unfortunately, my insurance had expired by two days and didn’t pay out. It took several years to recover from this.
Don’t think that going without insurance is a way of saving money. If you can’t afford to pay for the things that insurance would cover then you can’t afford not to have it.
Make sure that you have enough coverage to handle the situation.
It is best to automate payments, so you don’t make the horrible mistake of not paying your premium on time.
Do make use of free things.
– I’m talking about going to the library and taking out books and movies. Yes, they don’t have a massive selection of, but they do have a lot of books.
Also, if there is a book you want that they don’t have at your local library, you can always request it. They will have it for you in a short time.
Make use of local free activities. Often there are movies at the park or free courses offered through some agency.
Go ahead and take advantage.
There could be free CPR training or something equally important.
Some places have budgeting classes that they actually give you 50 or more dollar gift cards for merely taking the course.
Join a meetup group. https://www.meetup.com/
Meetup has a wide selection of get-togethers and activities hosted by regular people.
Some may cost a little money, but others are entirely free. You’ll get out of the house and potentially do something fun.
You could possibly meet a new friend or contact as well. There is everything from hiking to board games to business networking groups.
Do cookouts and potlucks.
It doesn’t cost nearly as much to have friends get together and break bread with each other than it does to try to cook a meal for just yourself or go to restaurants.
Plus you get to enjoy some time with your friends as well.
Set your Give-a-Fness level to zero.
Look, we all see at our friends on Facebook, Instagram, and other social media platforms and see all the fun they or other random people are having.
We watch as our neighbors roll out in that brand new car or truck. We see the celebrities with the latest couture clothing and diamond jewels.
But you need to ignore all of that. The younger generation seems to realize how all of it is phony.
If you looked at my facebook you would only see the highlights, you don’t see the 4 am mornings and the 60+ hour work weeks.
You don’t see when I have gross stained-up sweat pants, and my hair looks like I just came out of the Homeless Shelter.
Focus on the goals that you want to achieve financially and ignore all the bullshit.
Don’t give an F about what others are doing, but have a single-minded pursuit of your own happiness.
The Kardashians will never lift a weird spoiled finger to help you. You have to help yourself.
And the sad truth is once you have helped yourself that is when other people support you the most. When you are down and out you really find out who your friends are.
Sometimes you even drive them away by asking for too much. Better to make your own success and opportunities.
It does take work. It does take commitment and discipline. If you don’t have that, then figure out how to get it. Better to just make your plan, commit to it and do it.
Ignore what other people are doing and what they have.
Ignore the doubters and the people that think that you aren’t good enough to do it.
Just do what you have to so you can make your life better.
There is no need to tell people what you are going to do, just do it. The only way to succeed is squeezing out that last little bit of cash to save for a rainy day.
Just keep what I like to call “The Three Fs” in mind. Find and eliminate waste, focus on your goal, and F everyone who doesn’t agree.
That’s right you damn Amish people! I curse!! Relax Bro.
Anyway, I hope this has been helpful.
If you put it together however you think you can manage to do it in your own life, I’m confident that you’ll be able to set up your emergency fund and even more.
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