April 24, 2014

Save Your Way to a New Wardrobe

 Please welcome to the blog Morgan. She's going to help you learn how to save money for big wish-list items!

Spring is finally here, and it’s without a doubt one of my favorite times of the year for fashion. It always a mood lifter to refresh your wardrobe, add in some short sleeves and bright colors. But it doesn’t help when you set your sights on that perfect pair of sandals, but the price is sort of (ok, way out) of your budget. Don’t feel you need to give up on an item just because the price isn’t right. In most cases, a cheaper but similar option rarely takes away the longing for the real thing. Recently, I’ve learned a few tricks that have helped me save money for luxury purchases. Saving can actually be a fun challenge and the best part is the reward at the end. Easy money-saving methods like these can take that designer handbag from the shelf to the crook of your arm before you know it.

Why pay at all?
Whenever possible, make use of free goods and services. The money you save will quickly add up. For example, in lieu of buying a new book or movie, visit your local library and borrow entertainment for free. Instead of paying for gas, try walking or biking whenever possible. Your wallet and your waistline will certainly thank you. There are actually quite a few free things you may not be aware of. I found this useful and surprising list of free stuff that really helped me save money. With so many items available for free, you’ll be able to put valuable money aside for your latest treasure. 

Cut down on the cost of groceries
It’s amazing how much money I spend on groceries and other necessity items per month. I’ve learned that taking a little time for bargain-hunting saves a ton of money. While clipping coupons is useful, it can be extremely time consuming and hard to keep track of what coupons you have. Shopular is a great app that delivers coupons right to your phone, tracks how long they are usable, and even alerts you of sales when you are near one of the participating stores! For even more savings, I’ve made use of purchasing gift cards at a discount where you can buy them lower and then use their full value. By combining these frugal techniques, your savings will pile up!

Work on the side
Cutting down on costs is always helpful, but sometimes adding extra income will do the trick. If your regular paycheck doesn’t cut it for designer duds, consider taking on some side work. You can use nights and weekends to do services around your neighborhood, such as mowing lawns, shoveling snow, or other helpful tasks. I’m a huge dog lover, so I’ve made extra cash in the past by walking and caring for dogs on the weekends. I have a lot of fun dog sitting my new furry friends and earn money at the same time. Advertising my services is made simple online, and I’ve found a lot of new clients. You’d be surprised how easy it is to earn money in your off-time. Just be creative!

Make a plan
The best way to ensure you’ll save money is to make a clear plan for your savings. Make a pact with yourself such as to not spend any five-dollar bills and instead put them aside in a jar. This wacky idea can end up saving you hundreds of dollars in a year with little to no effort. Also, an excel spreadsheet will help streamline your savings, as well as track spending and progress toward your goal. This way, you’ll stay on track without any guesswork.

     These thrifty tips will help you reach your luxury purchase goal, without any guilt from over-spending. The challenge of saving money can be thrilling, so don’t feel weighed down by the prospect of extra frugality. In the end, you may find yourself subliminally bargain-hunting from here on out!

Morgan is a fashion-lover, part-time blogger, philanthropist, and wanna-be extreme couponer. She loves to share great fashion finds and the occasional entertaining ramble on her blog at http://www.graygabbana.com/ !

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